fingertips for the client
By Laurie ChanCe Smith
Note to massage therapists: each issue of Massage & Bodywork coNtaiNs the columN “fiNgertips for the clieNt,” which is
targeted to clieNts. this columN is available oNliNe at www.massageaNdbodywork.com as a priNtable file. priNt the faciNg
page, attach your busiNess card, aNd seNd it home with clieNts, courtesy of associated bodywork & massage professioNals.
36 massage & bodywork january/february 2009
Massage: Your KeY to HealtH
The notion of healing has always The positive physiological and
fascinated humans. And the healing psychological effects of massage
power of touch, for both body and were demonstrated in a recent study
mind, has been recognized for of patients undergoing care for
millennia. Ancient Egyptian artwork cancer. When given massage, study
depicts doctors utilizing a relaxing participants at the University of Texas
hand massage, and the Greek healer MD Anderson Cancer Center in
Hippocrates, often touted as the father Houston exhibited increased relaxation,
of modern medicine, suggested that better sleep, and improved immune
physicians become adept at “rubbing” function, along with relief from
their patients to increase health. Among fatigue, pain, anxiety, and nausea.
the countless ways to maintain strength In Ayurvedic Herbal Massage,
and vitality, “massage is the most basic author Gita Ramesh says regular
healing tool,” writes Kristine Kaoverii massages can “relieve stress and help
Weber, author of Healing Self Massage. to promote a long and healthy life.” In
Therapeutic touch is an instinctive the Indian healing system of ayurveda,
and eloquent form of communication massage is considered a form of whole
that has been molded into a healing art. body exercise that increases stamina
Larry Costa, author of Massage: Mind and energy, while simultaneously
“Massage and Body, writes that massage has many
“physical and mental benefits, including
delivering an inexpressible quality
of stillness and joy—a time to be
reminds ... relieving muscle soreness, increasing
flexibility, easing chronic pain, reducing
present. Massage realigns the entire
body, promotes deeper and more
tension headaches, boosting the natural breathing patterns, and helps
your body of immune system, promoting restful restore individual resources of vital
sleep, and improving concentration.” energy. The moments spent in massage
the pleasure Massage positively affects the body’s
circulatory, nervous, and immune
are an opportunity to experience
oneself as completely accepted.
of taking systems. By encouraging blood flow
through the veins, massage benefits
Regular massage is a gift to yourself.
Through the power of structured,
the entire body. The calming effects of healing touch, massage helps the
time out.” massage on the nervous system often body run smoothly, like keeping a
produce a sense of serenity and well- musical instrument in perfect tune.
Esme Floyd and Paul Wills, being. Regular massage also stimulates Massage rejuvenates the body from
authors of Body Massage the lymphatic system, which enhances the outside in, with side benefits
the function of the immune system. that include improved complexion,
From easing arthritis and asthma better posture, and a relaxed
to improving digestion, the benefits disposition on life. For additional
of massage therapy run the gamut. information about the numerous
Massage helps relieve daily stressors benefits and types of massage, visit
and eases recovery from many serious www.massagetherapy.com.
illnesses. In The Complete Book of
Relaxation Techniques, Jenny Sutcliffe Laurie Chance smith is a Texas-based
points out that massage can relieve writer and photographer who works for national
pain by stimulating the production and international markets on a plethora of
of endorphins—the body’s own topics. she can be reached at
painkillers—and, by increasing the firstname.lastname@example.org.
sensory input to the brain, thereby
blocking out the pain messages.
For more information, visit massagetherapy.com 37