man standing near bathtub to do stress relief massages

Best Stress Relief Massages for Relaxation and to Release Tension

Stress relief massages are one of the oldest natural therapies. The anti-stress massage uses movements that can calm the nerves and relax the muscles. It is often used in combination with aromatherapy to provide a person with maximum therapeutic benefits.

In the stress relaxation massage, the masseur uses a lotion or an oil to lubricate the hands so that they slide gently on the skin. Being in a comfortable and peaceful environment contributes to the effectiveness of the anti-stress massage and the expertise of the masseur.

While professional spas and massages are very popular today, anti-stress massages can be easily done at home. You can massage your arms, legs, and shoulders, but it is usually best to ask your partner, a friend, or a family member to give you a massage.

Feeling physically stressed out is often the result of tense or tired muscles. In case of stress, the blood circulation is reduced; this prevents oxygen and nutrients from being distributed to the brain and the whole body. To relax muscles and increase blood circulation, you can get a massage as a stress relief treatment. The use of massage as an anti-stress treatment helps release toxins from the body and releases tension.

Benefits of Stress Relief Massages

Stress Relief massage therapy is a treatment approach that is growing in demand and popularity. This approach was once considered an alternative or marginal approach but is becoming much more commonplace. Soft tissues of the body include muscles, tendons, connective tissues, etc. If a person is tense and in need of relaxation, or if they have been injured and have significant muscle and / or nerve damage that affects their body, stress massage therapy may be worth exploring. Here are some benefits of massage therapy.

  • It is relaxing - When the body is stretched and stressed, it produces unhealthy levels of the well-known stress hormone, cortisol, which can contribute to weight gain, insomnia, digestive problems, and headaches. It has been shown that massage therapy decreases cortisol levels in the body. This allows the body to enter recovery mode. In addition, this form of therapy also triggers lasting feelings of relaxation, mood enhancement, and reduced stress levels.
Women in spa relaxing

Photo by Ishan @seefromthesky on Unsplash

  • It reduces stress - Massage therapy can not only help relieve stress, but regular massage sessions over an extended period can boost energy levels, reduce pain, and stimulate individuals physically and emotionally.
  •  It can help lower blood pressure - Regular massage therapy sessions have helped lower blood pressure levels. In fact, some long-term studies have shown that a consistent massage program can reduce both systolic (higher number) and diastolic (lower) blood pressure. In addition, it can also reduce cortisol levels in the body.
  • In addition, regular massage sessions can also reduce the sources of anxiety, hostility, releases tension, and depression. In turn, lower blood pressure levels can also reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke and / or kidney failure, as well as many other health problems.
  •  It promotes muscle relaxation - The goal of massage therapy is to target the source of body pain by eliminating tense muscles, increasing flexibility and providing relaxation. The massage also promotes circulation in the affected or injured muscles, which increases the nutrients and oxygen in the damaged tissues. In turn, this increased activity on the affected sites reduces stiffness and edema (swelling) of muscles and joints, while increasing flexibility to help reduce pain.

In addition, this form of therapy also releases endorphins (pain hormones), which increase the levels of dopamine and serotonin in the body. These hormones help the body in many ways, both physically and emotionally. In this case, they promote healing, pain management and feeling of euphoria, while helping to calm the nerves.

4 Massage Techniques to Relieve Stress

There are several very effective massage techniques that can be used as an anti-stress therapy. These are:

1. Deep Tissue Massage

Oxygen and nutrients are blocked when muscles are stressed. This causes inflammation of the muscles due to the accumulation of toxins in the tissues. A real good massage targets the cause of this disease because this massage focuses on the muscles and tissues that surround them so that the blood circulates properly. This stress therapy will help release harmful toxins to the body.

2. Swedish Massage

This anti-stress therapy is the main massage technique taught in schools. The Swedish massage technique uses gentle strokes on delicate bony body structures such as the face, hands, and feet. Tougher and harder strikes are applied on very muscular areas such as the neck and shoulders.

Shiatsu Massage stress relief massage

3. Shiatsu Massage

Shiatsu massage is a form of acupressure. This technique uses pressure while applying long strokes on the body's energy fields. According to those who practice this ancient form of stress treatment, strokes are just as important as the opening of pressure joints.

This technique uses manipulation, rotation and stretching of the joints to heal the body and mind. Shiatsu massage can also be done when you are soaked in hot water. The hot water helps the muscles to relax.

Stress Relief Massage-Acupressure

4. Acupressure

Acupressure has its roots and origin from the ancient Chinese Medical practices. Studies have shown that it can help manage and treat various problems, such as stress, fatigue, nausea, and headaches. Acupressure is also a popular massage technique commonly used in the treatment of stress. Like acupuncture, this technique uses points found in the meridians of the body to relieve pain.

Acupuncture uses needles while acupressure, as its name suggests, uses pressure using fingers, thumbs, and elbows. A very weak electric current is sometimes used as well. This technique relaxes tension in the muscles by applying a certain amount of force, then releasing it to return the blood to the tissues. Acupressure also releases energies on these points that promote good health.

Self-Massaging Techniques to Relieve Stress at Home

Self-massage techniques are techniques that you can use yourself at home to get rid of muscle tension and trigger points throughout your body. Many self-relief massage techniques can be performed with the fingers, hands, and elbows, while others need simple objects such as tennis balls, foam rollers or trigger point tools such as the Thera cane.

Here are some self-relief massages you can easily try at home:

Self Massage for the Face

  • Blow all over the face and forehead.
  • Use your finger tips of both hands to massage your temples.
  • Gently apply your thumbs on the eyelids from the inside corners to the outer corners.
  • Press with your thumbs just below the inner corner of the eyebrow. Release and repeat. Do these three or four times.
  • Run along your face on the jaw.
  • Pinch your entire jaw from one ear to the other.
  • End the face by repeating the first step.
Home-self-massage-woman massaging face

Self Massage for the Chest

  • Always lie down, massage from your ribs to your shoulders.
  • Gently press along your clavicle with your fingers.
  • Go between your breasts and on the sides of the rib cage.

Self Massage for the Belly

  • Pass the hand of the solar plexus behind the hand to the belly button.
  • Lower the solar plexus by tracing your rib cage to your waist with both hands.
  • With the hands reinforced 'iron' in a circle all over the abdomen with uniform pressure.
  • Squeeze each side of your hips past your waist.
  • Rub back and forth on the bottom of your abdomen.
  • Repeat the first step.

Self Massage for the Shoulders and Neck

  • Extend the massage on the upper part of your chest and around your shoulders.
  • Turn the head to one side and pull up your neck with your hand in section. Repeat several times on both sides.
  • Work between the shoulder blades to the base of the skull. Repeat several times.

Self Massage for the Legs

Sit on the floor, legs apart. Bend the right leg to the knee.

  • Effleurage several times the front, then the back of the leg.
  • Friction rubs energetically up and down all over the front and back of the leg. You will soon feel the warmth that it produces because it really stimulates your circulation.
  • Work on the knee as in the massage step by step.
  • Lower your leg and then flick your thigh.
  • Rake the thigh quickly with both hands. This increases the circulation.
  • Squeeze and release along the inner thigh and then the outer thigh.
  • Do diagonal movements as in the step-by-step massage.
  • Finish with flicking.
  • Repeat on the other leg.

Self Massage for the Hips and Buttocks

Lie on one side with your knees bent.

  • Bend your femur from hip to tailbone (seated bone), then down and around the buttock before finishing at the hip.
  • Squeeze and release the buttock to improve circulation and tone muscles.
  • Gently pinch on the buttocks.
  • Finish stroking the entire surface.
Man self massage back

Self Massage for the Back

You will have to sit upright for this one!

  • Reach hands and starting under the waist, work as far as possible.
  • Try to press your thumb on your spine if you can get your fingers pointing forward. Pressure on the lower back and the sacrum (upper buttocks) really relieves back pain.
  • You can also use a wooden back massage roller or shake your back against a rolling pin.

Self Massage for the Scalp

  • Massage your scalp as if it were a shampoo for your hair.
  • Block your fingers on your scalp and move it over your skull. These movements increase blood circulation and performed regularly will improve the condition of your hair.
  • Gently pull the locks of hair all over your head. Finish your massage by lying on your hands and breathing deeply for a minute or two. Depending on the oil you have chosen, you will feel deeply relaxed, which makes it a little sleepy or reinvigorated and energized.

Relief Massage Points for Stress Relief

There are several pressure points throughout the body that are associated with stress relief .  So, it would be beneficial to know self-relief massage points that you can incorporate daily in your anti-stress relief routine.

He Gu Relief Point

     This relief point is found between the thumb and forefinger, at the top of the muscle. Apply pressure and massage the area for five seconds. This pressure point is very effective in treating stress, headaches, neck pain, facial pain and toothaches.

Zu San Li Relief Point

     In addition to reducing stress, this relief point can also help relieve nausea and fatigue. It is found along the outside of your tibia, four fingers from the bottom of your knee pad. Use your thumb to apply pressure and massage the tip for five seconds.

Tai Chong Relief Point

Tai Chong's pressure point contributes to stress, menstrual cramps, lower back pain, and high blood pressure. To find this relief point, find the lacuna between your big toe and your second toe. From where the skin meets, mount about two fingers. Apply deep pressure to this spot and massage for five seconds.

Self Relief Massages are Simple and a Natural Way to Good Health

Self-relief massages are simple and natural way to achieve and maintain good health and well-being. It helps relieve headaches, insomnia, body aches, tension, and stress. It improves circulation, aids digestion, relaxes muscles and speeds up waste disposal. You can easily learn to self massage just try the massage techniques I recommended above. It something you can do at home at any set time.  You can use the self-massage to revitalize yourself after a busy work schedule or an outdoor trip. Use massage oil on your bare skin to reduce friction on the skin and avoid pulling hair.

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