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Massage Therapy and Body Work Have Wonderful Benefits

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by Leslie Aguillard, RN, CRRN

An hour of peace and quiet, pleasant music, healthful oils nourishing your skin and the experienced hands of a good therapist can do wonders for your outlook and your physical well being. For those of you who have not either tried massage or found a massage therapist who could actually ease your aches and pains, listen up.

A typical Swedish style massage is equivalent to a four mile walk - your circulation improves, your lymph moves toxins out so that they can be eliminated from your body, you are refreshed and relaxed. And, if you havenít exercised in a while or had a massage in a long time, you might even be a tad sore the next day, the good kind of sore from having done something physical. This can be alleviated by taking a nice hot mineral bath of salt and baking soda afterwards plus drinking a lot of water. These will help flush the toxins that cause soreness out of your body.

Some people want deep massage and donít feel like theyíve gotten a massage unless they feel it to their bones - neuromuscular massage therapy is a deep therapy specifically designed to treat pain from over exertion or injury. Others want to just be relaxed and meditative - you will need to communicate with the therapist if you feel any discomfort. If you are taking any sort of pain medication it is best that you do not take it prior to going for a massage because you would not be able to tell the therapist if some move was too deep or painful and then the next day you might feel uncomfortable as a result.

Another very subtle approach is CranioSacral therapy, an osteopathic technique which helps improve circulation and a variety of neurological functions. Having a CranioSacral session and following it with a massage is like a mini vacation and comes highly recommended.

With Reiki or CranioSacral therapy there is no need to disrobe, there is no oil applied to the skin. Even with other forms of massage, you may leave your underwear on or wear running shorts and a sports bra, for example, and still get a full body massage. Good massage therapists want you to be comfortable and your modesty is protected.

Recently the AMTA held their board of directors meeting in Denver and I was one of the Therapists present giving seated massage for the board and others attending the meeting. Seated massage is also a fully clothed bodywork, brief as in fifteen or twenty minutes, and very refreshing for the back, neck, shoulders and arms. Often you will find seated massage being offered in health food stores or other public places as an introduction to massage - if you see it you should try it. Your employer might even be willing to hire a seated massage therapist to come to your office as a periodic benefit for employees - better than cookies or pizza, if you ask me.


Leslie Aguillard, RN, CNMT has been doing massage therapy for over fifteen years and combines a variety of techniques from myofascial release, trigger points and neuromuscular routines to Swedish, neoreichian and sports massage. Leslie is also a Reiki practitioner and people who are sensitive to energy work appreciate the flow of Reiki which is always present. For more information, visit Leslie Aguillard, RN, CRRN in Prosperity.

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