Hot stone massage is a massage technique, which employs the use of warmed stones, and several other massage techniques to relieve pain, reduce stiffness, relax tense muscles and improve blood circulation. The stones used in hot stone massage are distinctive river rocks or any other smoothed surfaced stones, which is made of basalt. Before being used, these stones are usually pre-heated in basalt. Pre-heating the stones in basalt allows them to retain heat for long duration of time. The use of stones for massage is an ancient technique, which dates back to the Native Americans who used them to relieve muscle aches and pains.
Depending on the stone massage therapist, different techniques are used when executing the stone massage therapy. When placing the stones, there are those therapists who use the human anatomy as a guide, and there are those therapists who place the stones at regions believed to balance the mind and body energetically. The modern hot stone massage therapy is credited to one Mary Nelson who created the LaStone Therapy, a technique that combined both the hot stone technique with therapeutic massage. Hot stone massage has continued to evolve with many massage therapists and spas coming up with their versions of the hot stone massage. With that said, here is a breakdown of some of the health benefits of the hot stone massage. We contacted a hot stone massage provider and asked for a quote about the service. This is what Enta Massage came back to us with “Hot stone massage therapy incorporates the use of water treated stones being placed at specific sites of your body to promote relaxation and help open the meridians [energy pathways]. It can take away stress, induce sleep & relieve muscle pain.”
Health Benefits of the Hot Stone Massage Therapy
The heat from these stone allows the muscles to relax, thereby allowing the therapist to penetrate and manipulate your deep tissues effectively. Muscles that are overly tense can be an obstacle during the session, thus by making use of the heated stones, your body will attain the extra relaxation required in easing sore muscles and also in releasing tension.
Despite the fact that all type of massages can relieve body pain that is caused by tense muscles or stiff joints, a perfectly executed stone massage therapy can provide a much greater relief because of the rather intense nature of the massage. Since the hot stones allow the therapist to penetrate and also manipulate your deep tissues effectively, a stone massage will leave you feeling physically well than any other type of massage therapy. It is exceedingly important to inform, the massage therapist of any discomfort during the session i.e. if the stones are too hot or if you feel the pressure applied is too much.
Improved Blood Circulation
Before beginning the massage, the massage therapist will let the stones rest on the trigger points first. As the heat produced by the stone penetrates deep into your body tissues, your blood vessels will begin to open up, which in turn will result in improved blood circulation. Poor blood circulation can result in fatigue, which will not only make the muscles tense but also result in a build up of lactic acid and fluid in the muscles. Increased blood circulation will deliver more oxygen to your muscles, which in turn will ease pains and aches.
Irrespective as to whether you are trying out massage for the first time or if you are interested in something new, you should first make a point of contacting your health care provider and therapist first to establish whether this type of massage will work for you. While the majority of people may find stone massages to be intensely relaxing and beneficial, it is extremely important to determine whether it is appropriate for you, especially if you a suffering from a health condition or if you have an injury.