If you have a muscle complaint, you’ll probably have considered massage as your first port of call. People all over the world visit masseuses regularly to keep their body in motion, whether they find themselves ailed by tension headaches, sports injuries, or they’re trying to get back on their feet after an accident – this ancient treatment can work miracles.
But, if not executed correctly, the results can be disappointing. Often the first place someone will go for this luxury is a hotel or spa. And while these common treatments are wonderful for helping you relax, they are not always undertaken by those with in-depth knowledge of the anatomy, so the effects don’t tend to last.
Whereas commonly practised treatments, such as Swedish massage, are effective at treating superficial muscle complaints, techniques like Deep Tissue treatments will reach through them and into the underlying muscles beneath, which could be the source of your pain. This kind of therapy requires advanced skill and knowledge, so is not offered by all practitioners.
If you suffer with a longstanding problem, or are in pain too acute to even consider letting someone apply pressure to your aggrieved area, you should look to a specialist in kinesiology to help cure you of your discomfort. There are a range of different approaches to massage – not just Deep Tissue or Swedish massage – and sometimes it takes an expert to find the right one.
It’s best to find an independent, registered practitioner. These can often be sought-out privately, but are well worth the investment. Besides, these practices are generally run by professionals who are interested mainly in helping reduce your pain. And although they too will have bills and a mortgage to pay, they are more concerned with treating the problem than charging you for lots of extras.
Try to find a therapist who will charge you a flat fee for the session length, i.e. 60 minutes, and who will throw in a free consultation.
You may find that your therapist wants to consult your specific problem at the beginning of each session. This isn’t because they’re being lazy or that they have forgotten what the problem it, it’s so that they can treat each session independently of the last, assessing your pain level and tolerance on that particular day.
The most well-practised therapists will understand that your pain will vary from day to day. Often a week or two may elapse between sessions, and your problem could have worsened during that time. So although you may find it frustrating to repeat yourself, you will soon start to see the benefits of approaching each session as a standalone treatment.
Practitioners will often be well-versed, not only in kinesiology, but also in physiology and orthopaedic too. They will likely have a wealth of experience working with chiropractor and surgeons to help those rehabilitating from injuries and operations.
This experience will give them a clear edge against conventional therapists, who tend to offer only one form of treatment. Experts in kinetic massage will be able to give a variety of treatments, and will work with you to decide which is right for you.
Techniques may include Sports Massage, Trigger Point Therapy, Deep Tissue or Gua Sha – a traditional Chinese medical treatment highly effective at alleviating pain. However, the most effective treatments will be tailored to your body’s specific needs, and won’t follow any specific routine.
This is yet another benefit to seeking out a private masseuse, as they won’t treat any two bodies the same. Professionals in this sector will understand the need for a unique treatment, and will be able to provide insight into what your body needs to keep up its strength.