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Science Says it is the Healing Touch

Massage turns on genes that promote recovery and healing while keeping inflammation at bay.

A decade ago in massage school, I was taught that massage does not heal so much as it helps return people to a state of homeostasis (or internal stability) so that the body can “heal itself.”  You may have also heard that massage helps remove lactic acid from muscle tissue. But recent data reveals massage therapy impacts bodily health at a much deeper level than previously thought. In fact, massage therapy induces a healing response by influencing genetic expression.

A new study by researchers at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada looked for the physiologic basis of how massage works. Their study revealed that the lifting and kneading technique, common in Swedish and deep tissue massage, does not remove lactic acid to alleviate muslce soreness, but that it actually turns off genes associated with inflammation and turns on genes that help muscles heal. In the study, scientists removed muscle tissue from overworked quadriceps muscles, ABMP11_22comparing the thigh muscle sample that got massage with the other one that did not. The results may have you reaching for your medical dictionary, but in plain English from the research article, “Massage therapy appears to be clinically beneficial by reducing inflammation and promoting mitochondrial biogenesis.”

When you work hard and play hard, massage therapy offers sweet relief and recovery.  I am grateful to be able to offer you the healing gift of massage.

Healing from the Outside In: Thai Bodywork

What is Thai Bodywork?  Also known as Thai Yoga Massage, and coming from a long history in Thailand, it is a deep full-body treatment, performed on a padded floor mat.  No oil is used and you wear loose, comfortable clothes.  It integrates gentle stretching, rhythmic pressure, and conscious use of breath.  The practitioner uses her hands, feet, arms, and legs to move the client into yoga-like poses, while stimulating the energy lines of the body.  The combination of movements and focused awareness creates a slow flowing “dance” around the recipient’s body.psoas stretch_gray_cropped

Relaxing, balancing, and calmly re-energizing, Thai Bodywork is a wonderful means to nurture oneself.  This therapy meets every person’s limits and capabilities with a kind and healing heart.  Thai Bodywork facilitates mental and physical release of tension by dynamically utilizing one’s own body to unwind stuck areas.

Why should someone who practices yoga receive Thai Bodywork?  In many cases, the recipient can experience benefit from poses that would be difficult to achieve unassisted.  The pressure on the energy lines, while completely relaxing into a posture, creates a synergistic effect to further open and energize the body.  This opening increases joint mobility and flexibility, improves circulation and lymphatic flow, tones organs, relieves muscular and emotional tension, boosts immune function by eliciting the relaxation response, and increases resistance to injury.  Also, many recipients report improved sleep.  Thai Bodywork is an excellent adjunct to a regular yoga practice.

Because the technique respects each person’s body type and level of flexibility, Thai Bodywork is ideal for almost everyone seeking balance and health!