How To Do Aromatherapy Massage

Aromatherapy Massage for Beginners

Aromatherapy uses massage to spread oils around the body and aid absorption into skin, superficial tissues and muscles. Massage warms the body and relaxes muscles, enhancing the effects of essential oils.

A basic massage sequence includes the following four movements. These are used for full-body massage or for specific areas of the body such as arms or legs.

Effleurage – The Warm-Up Act

Usually used to open and close a massage sequence, effleurage is a stroking movement of the hand that covers wide areas of the body. The pressure may vary from light to deep, but it is constant. For the person who is giving the massage, it serves the purpose of making first contact and establishing a rhythm. For the recipient, it warms the skin and promotes the flow of blood and lymph fluid, warming tissues in readiness for deeper moves. Superficial effleurage promotes relaxation of contracted muscle tissues. Deep effleurage produces mechanical and reflex reactions in the muscles.

Petrissage – Creating Friction

Petrissage is also known as friction and it creates a deep static pressure to relax tense muscles. Using the whole palm of the hand, or the thumb and fingers, petrissage works in circular movements to remove knots in muscles and encourage toxins to flow out of tissues. In aromamassage, this encourages the flow of lymph fluid and so is useful in lymphatic drainage. Petrissage typically follows effleurage or kneading movements in a massage sequence.

Kneading Those Knots Away

Kneading is a massage movement similar to kneading bread. The hands work over fleshy areas of the body to encourage the flow of blood and work at the deep roots of tension in the muscles. You can use your whole hands or just your thumb and/or fingers to knead. Some schools of thought speculate that kneading may be a better method than deep effleurage to aid the absorption of an aromatherapy blend into the skin and tissues, helping to decongest and relax muscles. It typically follows effleurage in a massage sequence and can be used to accompany petrissage.

Drain, Drain, Drain Away

Draining movements use the palms, thumbs and fingers to encourage blood and lymph to flow in the desired direction. The technique can include shuffling or vibrating the fingers along the body. It is used at the end of massage sequences, after the body tissues have been relaxed and decongested, to drain toxins towards lymph nodes.

Full-body Massage

A full-body massage usually follows the sequence: back, back of legs, front of legs, stomach (optional), arms, chest and face. At each part of the body you would perform effleurage (to warm up that area and spread the oils), petrissage/kneading and draining. Cover up each area of the body with a towel after you have massaged it, to allow maximum absorption of essential oils. Be sure to massage on a hard surface (i.e. not the bed) for full effectiveness of your massage moves.

Dilutions And Blending

A blend of 30 ml carrier oil and 18 drops essential oils (a choice of three to four oils) creates a 3% dilution – a safe percentage for most adults. For pregnant women reduce to a 1% dilution and for the elderly, children or those with sensitive skins reduce to 3%. The oils you choose depend on the conditions you wish to treat.

Contraindications To Aromamassage

If you have any of the following conditions, seek professional medical advice before having an aromatherapy massage: pregnancy, heart disease, circulatory problems, high or low blood pressure, varicose veins, pacemaker, haemophilia, taking anti-coagulants, cancer, recent operations or injuries, severe skin complaints, epilepsy, asthma, allergies (including nut), diabetes or thyroid problems.

The Amazing Health Benefits of Reflexology and How it Works

The Amazing Health Benefits of Reflexology and How it WorksReflexology is a type of bodywork modality in the field of massage therapy. It is an entirely natural and an effective alternative to Western Medicine and its origins go back to ancient Egypt and China. Accredited for helping with physical and psychological ailments, in many ways, reflexology is similar to the ancient Eastern art of Acupressure/Acupuncture.

Through this type of bodywork, the Chi—or the life force energy (widely recognized in Eastern cultures)—is sent directly to the malfunctioning and all surrounding areas. This expedites the body’s own natural healing processes. This works by using applied pressure in certain techniques on specific energy points along the body. These points are energy centers—the locations of maximum energy intake and/or output throughout our bodies. Thus, stimulating these energy centers is said to be very effective in aiding the healing process.

There are reflex points locations all throughout the head, face, ears, hands, feet and body. The idea is—every major area has a reflex point that can be stimulated to help illnesses in that area. The left and right hemispheres of the body correspond directly with the glands, organs and muscles located on those sides. For example, the reflex points for heart ailments would be located on the left hand and left foot while the reflex points for liver and gall bladder ailments would be located on the right hand and right foot.

healing benefits of reflexology

A few examples of the ailments that can be helped through Reflexology bodywork are:

  • Stress
  • Sinus problems
  • Migraines
  • Arthritis
  • Aches in the head, neck and/or body
  • Injuries
  • Digestive problems
  • Poor Blood Circulation
  • Insomnia
  • Menstrual cramps
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Acne and skin problems

relaxation benefits of reflexology

Sounds pretty fabulous, right? If you’ll have several sessions of Reflexology massage you’ll certainly find it to be extremely therapeutic: it’s just an all-around great way to relax and let the stress flow out of your body. Results from this type of bodywork are often noticeable after the very first session. And since it’s all natural and has no side effects, it’s definitely worth a shot. So next time you’re going to the local spa, treat yourself to a relaxing Reflexology session and experience it for yourself!

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