How Many Types of Massage Are There?
If you want to know precisely how many types of massage there are, this is the complete list!
Our team of trained masseuses and industry professionals researched and tested 101 types of massage to compile this ultimate guide to every therapy available in 2023.
For better navigation, you can skip to specific sub-groups to quickly find the types of massage you’re looking for right from the start.
So without further ado, let’s dive in. Click one of the links below to jump to your favourite massage subgroup.
Types of Massage To Unwind and De-Stress
The Best Sensual Massage Types
Types of Massage for Fitness Fanatics
Eastern Massage Styles
Massage Tools and Gadgets
Types of Massage To Unwind and De-Stress
Hot oil massage is a type of massage therapy that involves using heated oils during the massage. The therapist applies the warmed oils to the skin using long, flowing strokes, which help to relax the muscles and provide a soothing sensation. This type of massage can be helpful for individuals who experience stress, anxiety, or muscle tension.
Always use a well-reviewed and qualified practitioner. Don’t take any chances when combing hot oil and naked skin!
Swedish massage is the world’s most popular massage involves using long, smooth strokes, kneading, and circular movements on the surface layers of muscles. This therapy is typically gentle and relaxing and can help reduce stress and tension throughout the body. Swedish massage promotes relaxation, improves circulation, and relieves muscle tension.
Effleurage is a massage technique that involves gliding strokes with the hands or fingers over the skin, usually using oil or lotion. It is one of the most basic and commonly used techniques in massage therapy, particularly in Swedish massage.
Petrissage is a technique commonly used in Swedish and other types of massage therapy. It involves kneading, rolling, and squeezing the muscles and tissues to stimulate circulation, promote relaxation, and relieve tension.
Vibration is a technique commonly used in Swedish massage and other types of massage therapy. It involves a rapid, shaking movement to create a gentle vibration applied to the muscles and tissues. It is a well-known technique in most of the massages on this list.
Another key technique in Swedish Massage. Tapotement involves rhythmic tapping, slapping, and pounding movements applied to the muscles with the hands, fingers, or a specialised tool.
Chair Massage is a type of massage done while sitting in a unique massage chair, so you can get your back, neck, and shoulders kneaded while staying clothed and comfy. The massage therapist uses squeezing, pounding, and rubbing techniques to help you relax and feel great. You can find chair massages at airports, festivals, and even in your office! It’s the perfect way to take a quick break and treat yourself to some muscle TLC.
Your lymphatic system is responsible for eliminating waste and toxins in your body, but sometimes it can get sluggish or blocked. During a lymphatic drainage massage, a trained therapist will use light strokes and rhythmic movements to manipulate the lymph nodes and encourage the fluid to flow more smoothly through your body. It can help reduce swelling, boost your immune system, and leave you feeling relaxed and refreshed.
Cranial Sacral Therapy
Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST) is a technique that involves applying light pressure to the skull, spine, and pelvis to help release tension and promote relaxation. This type of massage is based on the idea that the fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord has its own rhythm and movement. By using subtle techniques to balance the flow of this fluid, a trained therapist can help reduce pain, improve mobility, and promote a sense of calm and well-being. It’s often used to treat migraines, neck and back pain, and stress-related disorders.
Bioenergetics is a therapy that helps individuals connect with their bodies to promote emotional healing and personal growth. It is based on the idea that emotional and physical health are interconnected and that individuals can achieve greater well-being by releasing muscular tension and expressing emotions through movement and breathing. Bioenergetics therapy often involves a combination of discussion, physical exercises, and bodywork techniques.
Reflexology massage focuses on applying pressure to specific points on the feet, the hands, and sometimes the ears. Points in these areas correspond to different parts of the body. Reflexology massage is based on the theory that these reflex points are connected to various organs and systems in the body. Stimulating them can help to improve the function of those organs and systems. Here is a handy chart to help you locate all of the pressure points and their corresponding body parts.
Breema massage is a type of bodywork that emphasises the connection between the body, mind, and emotions. It combines gentle stretches, rhythmic movements, and holding techniques to help individuals release tension and increase vitality.
Breema is often practised with the giver and receiver seated or kneeling, creating a sense of mutual participation and support. The practice of Breema also includes principles of mindfulness and self-awareness. This helps individuals to cultivate a more profound sense of presence and well-being.
Polarity therapy is a holistic approach to wellness that aims to balance the body’s energy flow. It combines bodywork, counselling, and diet to promote overall well-being. This type of therapy is based on the belief that blockages in the energy flow can lead to physical, emotional, and mental problems. The practitioner uses touch, pressure, and gentle rocking to help release these blockages and restore body energy balance. It’s an excellent option for anyone seeking a more natural approach to healing and relaxation.
An aromatherapy massage is a type of therapy that incorporates essential oils to enhance the therapeutic benefits of the practice. Essential oils are highly concentrated plant extracts known to have various healing properties. During an aromatherapy massage, the therapist selects essential oils depending on the desired outcome for the client. Combining soothing massage and aromatic oils can help relax the mind and body, relieve stress and tension, and promote overall well-being.
Prenatal massage is a type of massage therapy specifically designed for pregnant individuals. It involves gentle pressure and safe techniques for both the pregnant and their developing fetus.
Prenatal massage can help alleviate common discomforts of pregnancy, such as back pain, pelvic girdle pain, swelling, and stress. It can also help promote relaxation and prepare the body for labour and delivery. It is essential to receive a prenatal massage from a trained therapist who understands pregnancy’s specific needs and considerations.
Postnatal massage is a therapy designed for individuals who have recently given birth. It typically involves gentle massage techniques that can help the body recover from the physical stresses of pregnancy and childbirth.
Postnatal massage can help alleviate muscle tension, promote relaxation, and improve circulation. It can also help with the emotional adjustment to new parenthood.
Infant massage is a gentle touch therapy that uses soft, rhythmic strokes to massage a baby’s body. It can be an excellent way for parents to bond with their baby and provide numerous physical and emotional benefits for the baby.
Some benefits of infant massage include promoting relaxation, improving sleep patterns, relieving digestive discomfort, and enhancing parent-child attachment. It is recommended to learn infant massage techniques from a qualified instructor.
Heart connections in massage or physical therapy involve being fully present with the client, listening to their needs, and responding with compassion and care. The therapist can help the client feel seen, heard, and supported through this connection. This can be a powerful tool in promoting healing and well-being.
Lomi Lomi massage is a traditional Hawaiian massage that uses long, flowing strokes and gentle stretching to promote relaxation and release tension in the body. It’s sometimes called the “loving hands” massage because it’s a nurturing and healing touch. If you want a unique and relaxing massage experience, try Lomi Lomi!
During a Healing Touch session, the practitioner will use techniques, such as light touch or hovering their hands over the body, to detect and correct any imbalances in the energy field. The goal is to promote relaxation, reduce stress, and support the body’s natural healing processes.
Palliative care is a treatment for people suffering from terminal or life-limiting conditions. The massage often addresses physical symptoms such as pain, muscle tension, and fatigue. It also deals with emotional and psychological symptoms such as anxiety, depression, and stress. It is intended to provide comfort and support and enhance overall well-being during a challenging time.
Hand Massage involves rubbing, pressing, and kneading the muscles and joints of the hand and wrist to reduce tension and promote relaxation. This can help to improve circulation, reduce pain, and increase flexibility. It is often used with other massage techniques or as a standalone treatment for arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and repetitive strain injuries. It is particularly beneficial for musicians, typists and anyone who uses their fingers and hands all day. Check out this handy(!) chart to help you find all the nodes and corresponding body parts:
If you’re feeling stressed, tired, or need some TLC, a foot massage might be just what the doctor ordered. So kick off those shoes, put your feet up, and let someone else care for you for a change. Your feet (and your whole body) will thank you for it!
The Best Types of Sensual Massage
Tantric massage is a type of massage therapy that originated in ancient Hindu and Buddhist traditions. However, the Neo-Tantra of the 1970s in Berlin is most commonly practised. It involves a slow and sensual approach to massage to promote relaxation, emotional healing, and spiritual awareness.
The massage may involve gentle touch and breathing exercises and may be performed with the individual either clothed or unclothed. Tantric massage connects the mind, body, and spirit. It can be helpful for individuals who want to explore their sensuality and deepen their emotional and spiritual connections.
Nuru massage is a type of erotic massage that originated in Japan. It involves using a particular type of gel made from seaweed applied to the skin, making it slippery and allowing for a more sensual experience.
During the massage, the therapist uses their body to slide and glide over the individual receiving the massage, creating a feeling of intimacy and closeness. Nuru massage is typically performed naked and can be a way to explore sensuality and deepen intimate connections.
Aqua Massage is performed in the bath or shower as a therapy in its own right or as a pre-curser to tantric or erotic massage. It is a fantastic way to build chemistry and connection with your masseuse.
Yoni massage is a type of erotic massage primarily focused on the vulva and vagina of an individual with a yoni (a Sanskrit term for female genitalia). It involves gentle touch and pressure on and around the yoni to promote relaxation, pleasure, and a deeper connection to one’s sexuality. A trained practitioner typically performs yoni massage with the individual unclothed in a comfortable, safe environment.
Lingam massage is a fancy name for an erotic massage of the penis. The male equivalent of the Yoni Massage mentioned above. The idea is to use soft touches and pressure to help the person feel more relaxed and in touch with their sexual side. Lingham massage can help with erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation and body confidence.
Soapy Massage is similar to Aqua Massage but performed solely in the bath and with liberal use of bubbles and soapy to create a slippery, fun and sexy massage.
Another name for Aqua Massage but with more of the ritualistic elements of Tantric Massage mixed in. A sublime way to relax and connect with your masseuse.
A couples massage is a tantalising way to bond and connect with your partner. You and your lover will enjoy side-by-side massages from skilled therapists in a dimly lit room, surrounded by soothing music and fragrant candles. Imagine being caressed by the same tranquil touch as you unwind in each other’s company, indulging in the sensuality together. It’s an intimate and rejuvenating experience that will bring you closer.
Four Hands Massage
Four Hands Massage utilises the talents of two masseuses to caress your cares away. This therapy can be sensual or purely therapeutic, but the combination of two talented masseuses taking care of you is always a truly indulgent experience.
Prostate massage is a practice that involves massaging the prostate gland, which is a small gland located between the bladder and the penis in men. There are claims that prostate massage can provide several potential benefits, such as:
- Improved prostate health: Prostate massage can help improve blood flow to the prostate gland, which may help reduce inflammation and promote overall prostate health.
- Enhanced sexual pleasure: Prostate massage can stimulate the prostate gland, producing pleasurable sensations and enhancing sexual pleasure.
- Pain relief: Prostate massage can help relieve pain and discomfort associated with certain prostate conditions, such as prostatitis.
Improved urinary function: Prostate massage may help improve urinary function by reducing the symptoms of an enlarged prostate gland, such as frequent urination and difficulty urinating.
Quite simply, a naked massage for those who love to cast off their inhibitions and clothing. The masseuse will also be naked, so you can revel in the glory of the human form whilst enjoying a relaxing massage.
Also known as B2B Massage, this is generally a sensual therapy involving the same body glides and rubs you will find in Tantric and Nuru Massage. B2B massage can be found worldwide and can help with issues such as body confidence, sexual dysfunction and stress.
Happy Ending Massage
An outdated term that refers to the client receiving an orgasm at the end of the massage.
Massage Parlours are establishments where you can turn up without booking and receive a variety of massages. Always ensure the provider is a reputable and legal business, as parlours can often represent the seedy end of the massage world.
Gay Massage is sensual or therapeutic massage from one gay man to another. Very popular in cities like London and Manchester, which have thriving LGBTQ communities.
As above but for women! Lesbian massage is often known as Women’s Massage. As with Gay Massage above, not everyone who wants to experience a same-sex massage identifies as gay or lesbian.
Tantric yoga is a type of yoga that originated in ancient India and is focused on the connection between the mind, body, and spirit. It involves various physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation practices. The are designed to help practitioners achieve higher consciousness and spiritual awareness.
Tantra yoga can also involve using mantras, visualisations, and other techniques to help practitioners connect with their inner selves and the universe. Some people also use tantric yoga to enhance their sexual experiences. This is only one aspect of the practice and is not the primary focus.
Sensual massage combines sexy body glides and a teasing touch of erotic and tantric massage with essential oils, aromatic candles and soft music. This creates a profoundly sensual atmosphere that bridges the gap between pure eroticism and the more spiritual tantric massage.
Erotic Massage is sexy. No breathing techniques, no need for drones, meditations or rituals. This is a fully naked, sexy massage that will send you into a state of pure arousal and excitement. Gorgeous girls and guys offer erotic massage all over the world. Book yourself in today and see what you’ve been missing!
Tie and Tease
Tie & Tease massage is for men and women who want to let the masseuse take control. A very light form of BDSM, Tie & Tease uses light restraints and teasing touches. These can incorporate feathers, leather and, of course, the masseuse’s heavenly body. Allow yourself to be teased with this seriously sexy massage.
BDSM stands for Bondage, Discipline, Sadism, and Masochism. These activities involve consensual power exchange and often include physical and emotional elements of dominance and submission.
A heavier form of Tie & Tease, BDSM Massage will see you restrained, whipped and spanked. Always establish clear boundaries before the session, but the power and the pleasure are now in the hands of your masseuse. Do as you’re told, you naughty thing!
What’s your fantasy? Naughty secretary? Gym Clothes? Sexy Lingerie and high heels? Whatever it is, there is a masseuse out there who can fulfil it. Fantasy massage is all about creating a bespoke experience for each client. Let the masseuse of the concierge know what you fantasise about and allow them to create your dream scenario.
Role-play massage is a type of massage that incorporates elements of fantasy and imagination to enhance the massage experience. In this type of massage, the client and the massage therapist engage in a scenario where they imagine themselves in a different setting or situation.
This scenario can be sensual, or it can be purely fantastical. Let your imagination be your guide, and indulge in the fantasy of a role-play massage.
Sexological Bodywork is a therapeutic approach focusing on the connection between the body and sexuality. It involves various techniques and massage types designed to help individuals overcome sexual issues, improve their sexual health and well-being, and enhance their sexual experiences.
Another name for Body To Body Massage.
Dark Tantra Massage
Similar to Tie & Tease, Fantasy Massage and BDSM. A mistress or dominatrix often performs this fetish or kink-based massage type.
Foot Fetish Massage
This massage type may sound similar to a standard foot massage, but it’s quite the opposite. In this instance, you are being massaged by the masseuse’s feet. Let’s be honest it’s probably not the most effective way to work out your knots or fix your bad back, but if you have a thing about feet, this could be your idea of heaven!
Another name for Nuru or Soapy massage. Often associated with less-than-reputable establishments.
Erotic Massage terminology. GFE stands for Girlfriend Experience. This might include a dinner date combined with a sensual massage.
A bit of massage terminology referring to your therapy’s location. Incall massage is when you visit the masseuse at his or her premises or place of work.
Unsurprisingly this is the opposite of Incall Massage. An outcall massage is when the therapist comes to your home, hotel, place or work, or anywhere else you would like to enjoy the experience. Within reason!
Types of Massage for Fitness Fanatics
Deep Tissue Massage
Deep tissue massage therapy focuses on reaching deeper muscle and connective tissue layers. It involves applying firm pressure and slow strokes to help relieve chronic muscle tension and tightness. The therapist may work on the targeted areas with their fingers, knuckles, or elbows.
Deep tissue massage is often recommended for individuals who experience chronic pain or have tightness and muscle stiffness due to physical activity or stress. The pressure during this type of massage can sometimes be intense, but the therapist will work with the individual to ensure that the pressure is tolerable and within their comfort level.
Not to be confused with Traeger Grills!
Dr Milton Trager developed Trager therapy, this therapy is based on the idea that the body and mind are interconnected and that releasing tension in the body can lead to a greater sense of relaxation and well-being. The therapist uses their hands to guide the body through movements, promoting restoring and maintaining normal body functions.
Hellerwork is a type of bodywork that combines deep tissue massage, movement education, and dialogue to help individuals release tension and improve posture. It was developed by Joseph Heller in the 1970s and is based on the idea that our physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being are interconnected. Hellerwork massage aims to help individuals become more aware of their bodies and to make positive changes in their physical and emotional patterns.
Sports massage is a therapy that addresses the specific needs of athletes and individuals who engage in physical activity. It helps relieve muscle tension, improve flexibility, and prevent injuries.
During a sports massage, the therapist may use deep tissue, stretching, and other techniques to target the areas of the body that are most affected by physical activity. Sports massage can be helpful both before and after exercise, as it can help athletes prepare for physical activity and recover from intense workouts more quickly.
Myofascial release focuses on the fascia, a thin layer of tissue that surrounds and supports the muscles and organs. This massage releases tension and pain through slow, sustained pressure on the affected areas. Myofascial massage is commonly used to give the underlying muscle room to stretch and recover from injury.
Trigger point massage is a therapeutic technique that focuses on identifying and treating trigger points, which are areas of muscle tension that can cause pain and discomfort in other areas of the body. The therapist applies pressure to these trigger points to release the tension and alleviate the pain, using techniques such as deep tissue massage and stretching. Trigger point massage can effectively relieve chronic pain and improve the client’s range of motion.
Ortho-Bionomy is a type of bodywork that uses gentle movements and positional release techniques to stimulate the body’s natural self-corrective abilities. Developed in the 1970s by osteopath Arthur Lincoln Pauls, Ortho-Bionomy is based on the principles of osteopathy and emphasises the importance of the body’s innate healing abilities. Ortho-Bionomy aims to release tension and pain by restoring balance to the body and promoting relaxation.
Rolfing massage, also known as Structural Integration, is a type of bodywork that focuses on realigning and balancing the body’s connective tissues, or fascia, through deep tissue manipulation and movement education. Developed by Ida Rolf in the mid-20th century, Rolfing aims to improve posture, flexibility, and overall physical functioning. The process typically involves a series of ten sessions, each focusing on different body areas.
Neuromuscular massage is the same concept as trigger point therapy or myofascial release listed above. It is a therapeutic massage that focuses on treating muscle pain and dysfunction. It involves the application of targeted pressure and manipulation to specific trigger points in the muscles, aiming to alleviate pain and discomfort, increase the range of motion, and restore optimal muscle function.
The therapist uses their hands, fingers, elbows, or other tools to pressure the affected areas. This stimulates the nervous system and releases muscle tension and knots. Neuromuscular massage is often used to treat back pain, headaches, carpal tunnel syndrome, and sports injuries.
Active Release Therapy
Active Release Therapy (ART) is a soft tissue therapy that uses manual pressure and stretching to treat various injuries and conditions. It focuses on releasing adhesions in the muscles, tendons, and ligaments, making it a popular choice for treating conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, and plantar fasciitis. ART can also help to reduce pain and improve joint mobility.
ART could be an excellent option if you’re struggling with chronic pain or a stubborn injury. Just make sure to seek out a qualified practitioner to get the best results.
Cupping involves placing cups of glass, bamboo, or silicone on the skin to create suction. The suction created by the cups helps increase blood flow, reduce inflammation, and release muscle tension. Cupping therapy can be used to treat a variety of conditions, including back pain and respiratory problems. It is often combined with other massage techniques and can leave circular marks on the skin that typically disappear within a few days.
If you’re interested in Feldenkrais training, there are two main types: Awareness Through Movement (ATM) and Functional Integration (FI). With ATM, you’ll join a group class where you’ll be given verbal instructions to follow as you perform a series of movements. If you prefer one-on-one attention, FI may be more your style. During these sessions, a trained practitioner will use touch and movement to help you discover new ways of moving and releasing tension.
The best part? Feldenkrais training is safe and suitable for people of all ages and abilities. It’s a fantastic way to improve your physical and mental well-being, and many people find it relaxing and enjoyable to connect with their bodies. So why not give it a try? Your body (and mind) will thank you!
Eastern Massage Styles
Gua sha is a traditional Chinese healing technique that involves scraping the skin with a smooth-edged instrument to stimulate circulation and promote healing. The practitioner applies pressure to the skin in long strokes, which causes redness or bruising on the treated area. Like cupping, the effects can look dramatic but will subside after a few days.
Ayurveda massage is a type of massage therapy based on the principles of Ayurveda, a traditional Indian system of medicine. In Ayurveda, the body is believed to have seven energy centres called chakras, each associated with specific physical, emotional, and spiritual characteristics.
The massage balances these chakras using warm herbal oils and specific massage techniques targeting the different energy centres. By balancing the chakras, Ayurveda massage is believed to help promote overall health and wellness in both the body and mind.
Pranayama Breath, a yogic breathing technique, can be incorporated into the massage to enhance relaxation and promote deeper breathing. During a massage session, the therapist may encourage the client to practice Pranayama breathing by instructing them to take slow, deep breaths through the nose and out through the mouth. This type of breathing can help the client relax and enter a more meditative state, allowing them to better connect with their body and the massage experience.
Abhyanga is a form of Ayurvedic massage that uses warm, herbal oils to massage the body. The massage typically begins at the head and works down to the feet, focusing on long, flowing strokes that help calm the nervous system and promote relaxation. Specific herbal oils help balance the doshas (the three energies that govern the body and mind in Ayurveda) and nourish the skin. Abhyanga is often part of a larger Ayurvedic treatment plan to address specific health concerns or promote overall well-being.
Shiatsu massage is a Japanese form of bodywork that involves applying pressure to specific points on the body using the fingers, thumbs, and palms. The therapist uses a series of rhythmic and flowing movements to apply pressure to these points, with the goal of promoting the flow of energy throughout the body and bringing it into balance.
Shiatsu translates as ‘finger pressure’. In addition to the pressure point work, the therapist may use stretching and other techniques to release tension and promote relaxation. It is often used to help relieve stress, improve circulation, and alleviate various physical and emotional symptoms.
A Thai massage is a traditional form of bodywork that originated in Thailand. It involves stretching, acupressure, and rhythmic compression to help release tension and promote relaxation throughout the body. It is common for the therapist to walk on the back of the client to release tension. If you enjoy having your back cracked but also want a relaxing massage, a Thai massage could be for you!
Reiki is a Japanese form of alternative medicine that is based on the idea of energy healing. The word “Reiki” comes from the Japanese words “rei” meaning universal, and “ki” meaning life force energy. It is believed that this energy flows through all living things and can be harnessed to promote healing and balance in the body, mind, and spirit.
Indian Head Massage
Indian head massage, also known as Champissage, is a form of massage therapy that originated in India over 1,000 years ago. It focuses on the head, neck, and shoulders, promoting relaxation, reducing stress and tension, and improving overall well-being.
During an Indian head massage session, the recipient sits upright in a chair while the practitioner uses their hands to massage the scalp, neck, and shoulders.
Chi Nei Tsang
Chi Nei Tsang is an abdominal massage that originated in China and was later developed in Thailand. It is a holistic approach to healing that works with the body’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects.
The word “Chi” refers to the life force or energy that flows through all living things, while “Nei” means internal and “Tsang” means organs. Thus, Chi Nei Tsang means “working the internal organs with energy.”
Javanese massage is a traditional massage technique that originated in Java, Indonesia. It is a holistic approach to healing that combines deep tissue massage, acupressure, stretching, and aromatherapy techniques to promote relaxation and improve overall well-being.
Javanese massage typically begins with a gentle massage of the feet and legs, followed by a full-body massage using deep tissue techniques and stretching movements. The therapist may use their fingers, palms, elbows, and knees to apply pressure to specific points on the body. This releases tension and promotes relaxation.
Another Indonesian therapy is Balinese massage. This massage type tends to be more relaxing and therapeutic, while Javanese is more vigorous and can be quite intense, especially if the client has a lot of muscle tension or knots.
Balinese massage may also use a broader range of aromatherapy oils. In contrast, Javanese massage focuses more on pressure points to release tension and improve circulation.
Another Indonesian massage type, Sumatran massage, also incorporates energy work, believed to help balance the body’s energy system and promote healing. The therapist may use their hands to channel energy and promote the flow of vital energy throughout the body.
Tui Na (or Tuina) is a Chinese therapeutic massage used for thousands of years. It involves using hand techniques to massage and manipulate soft tissues, including muscles, tendons, and ligaments, and acupressure techniques to stimulate the body’s energy channels or meridians.
Tui Na is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) principles, which view the body as a complex system of interconnected channels or meridians through which the body’s vital energy or Qi flows. It is believed that when Qi flows freely and smoothly throughout the body, a person’s health and well-being are maintained. Conversely, when Qi is blocked or stagnant, it can lead to pain, illness, and disease.
Zhi Ya (also spelt Zhiya or Zhi’ya) is a traditional Chinese massage technique focusing on acupressure and deep tissue massage to target specific points along the body’s meridians or energy channels. The term “Zhi Ya” literally means “finger pressure” in Chinese, and the technique involves applying sustained pressure to specific points on the body using the fingers, thumbs, or palms.
Moxibustion is a traditional Chinese medicine technique that involves burning dried mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) on or near specific points of the body. It is often used with acupuncture and is considered a form of acupuncture stimulation.
During moxibustion, a small cone or stick of dried mugwort is lit and held over or placed on the skin at specific acupuncture points. The heat and therapeutic properties of the mugwort are believed to stimulate the body’s Qi (vital energy) and promote healing.
Moxibustion treats various conditions, including pain, digestive disorders, menstrual disorders, infertility, and respiratory disorders. It also boosts the immune system and promotes overall health and well-being.
An Mo Massage
This is a massage that originated in China and is part of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).”An Mo” translates to “press and rub,” which describes the techniques used during the massage.
An Mo involves applying pressure and kneading techniques to specific body areas, such as the muscles, joints, and acupressure points.
Dao Liao (sometimes spelt Dao Liao Ya) is the Chinese term for Scraping. It is a traditional Chinese massage technique that involves scraping the skin with a special tool to promote healing and relieve pain. The tool used in Dao Liao is typically made of jade, buffalo horn, or other materials and is shaped like a flat, smooth disc or spoon.
While Dian Xue is primarily associated with martial arts and self-defense, it is also used in some traditional Chinese medicine to treat certain health conditions. However, using Dian Xue for therapeutic purposes is controversial, and limited scientific evidence supports its effectiveness.
It is important to note that the use of Dian Xue for self-defence or therapeutic purposes should only be attempted by trained practitioners who understand the risks and potential complications involved. Improper use of Dian Xue can cause serious injury or even death.
Xiao Er Tui Na
As Tui Na stated above, but specifically for children or infants. The term “Xiao Er” translates to “child” in Chinese, and “Tui Na” refers to the type of massage technique used.
Qi Gong Massage
Qi Gong Massage (or Qi Healing) is a therapeutic massage based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) principles and Qi Gong. This Chinese healing practice involves cultivating and manipulating Qi (vital energy).
During a Qi Healing Massage session, the therapist uses massage techniques, such as rubbing, kneading, and pressing, to stimulate specific acupressure points and meridians on the client’s body. The massage promotes the flow of Qi and blood, balancing the body’s energy and releasing physical and emotional blockages.
Herbal Thai Massage
Herbal Thai massage, also known as Thai herbal compress massage or Luk Pra Kob, is a form of massage therapy that combines traditional Thai massage techniques with hot herbal compresses.
During the session, compresses made from a blend of traditional Thai herbs, such as lemongrass, ginger, and turmeric, are applied to the body. The heat and aroma from the compresses are believed to help relax the muscles, improve circulation, and promote overall wellness.
Massage Tools and Gadgets
Percussive therapy involves using a massage gun to deliver rapid pressure pulses to your muscles. This can help to increase blood flow, reduce muscle soreness, and improve the range of motion. It’s like a deep-tissue massage that you can perform on yourself.
The Theragun is popular at the premium end of the market because of its powerful motor, quiet operation, and customisable speed settings.
Foam Rollers are popular self-massage tools that apply pressure to your muscles with a knobbly tube or cylinder. This can help to release tension and improve flexibility. Athletes and fitness enthusiasts often use Foam Roller Massage to aid recovery after workouts.
Massage balls are commonly used for self-massage or myofascial release therapy. They are designed to target specific muscle groups and knots, providing deep-tissue massage and helping to alleviate muscle tension and soreness. Here are some common uses for massage balls:
- Trigger point therapy: Massage balls can target trigger points, knots or tight spots in the muscle tissue that can cause pain and discomfort. By applying pressure to these points, massage balls can help release tension and improve the range of motion.
- Self-massage: Massage balls are also great for self-massage. You can help increase circulation and break up adhesions or scar tissue by rolling the ball over your muscles.
- Stress relief: Massage balls can help relieve stress and tension in the body. Rolling the ball over tight muscles can help promote relaxation and a sense of calm.
Compression boots, like Therabody Recovery Air Jet Boots, use air compression to massage the legs and feet. They work by applying pressure to the muscles, which can help increase blood flow and lymphatic drainage, reduce swelling, and promote muscle recovery.
Shiatsu Massage Cushion
Shiatsu massage cushions typically feature rotating nodes or rollers that mimic human fingers’ and thumbs’ pressure and movement. These nodes or rollers move up and down or in a circular motion, targeting specific body areas such as the back, neck, shoulders, and thighs.
Many shiatsu massage cushions include additional features such as heat therapy, adjustable intensity levels, and various massage programs to customise the experience. They are designed to be portable and can be used in various settings, such as at home, in the office, or the car.
Massage mats can feature different massage nodes or rollers, including shiatsu-style rollers, vibration motors, or a combination. Some massage mats include heat therapy, adjustable intensity levels, and various massage programs to customise the experience.
Modern massage chairs have various styles, from traditional recliners to high-tech designs. They can be used in various settings, such as home, office, or salon. Some massage chairs have advanced features like Bluetooth connectivity, music players, and built-in speakers. They aren’t cheap, but they offer a convenient and effective way to enjoy the benefits of massage therapy in the comfort of your home or office.
Vibrating Massage Balls
Vibrating massage balls are small, handheld massage tools designed to provide targeted relief to sore or tense muscles. They typically contain a motor that produces high-frequency vibrations, which can help to loosen tight muscles and promote relaxation. Excellent for tight feet, shoulder impingement or tight hip flexors.
A facial massager is a handheld device designed to provide massage therapy to the face, neck, and head. It can help to improve blood flow, reduce tension and stress, and promote relaxation.
The Theraface Pro is designed to be portable and rechargeable, making it easy to use on the go. It can target specific areas of the face, such as the forehead, cheeks, and jawline.
Similar to the cushions above. Excellent for a lower back massage whilst driving long distances or to relax your neck and shoulders at bedtime.
The purpose of a foot bath is to provide a relaxing and therapeutic experience for the feet. The warm water helps to soothe tired and achy feet, while the massagers and bubbles help to stimulate circulation and relieve tension. Some footpaths also come with special salts or oils that can be added to the water to enhance the benefits further.
Massage sticks, or muscle rollers, are tools for self-massage and myofascial release. They are typically long and cylindrical, made of foam, plastic, or wood. Massage sticks are designed for different body parts, including the back, legs, arms, and neck.
A scalp massager is used to massage the scalp, promoting relaxation and stimulating blood flow to the hair follicles. Scalp massagers come in different shapes and sizes. They are typically small and handheld, with soft bristles or nodes that can be used to massage the scalp.
Scalp massage has been shown to have various benefits, including reducing stress and tension, promoting hair growth, and improving scalp health.
Trigger Point Massage Cane
A Trigger point massage cane is a self-massage tool designed to help people reach and massage hard-to-reach trigger points in their muscles. It is a curved cane with knobs or balls attached, strategically placed to help users apply pressure to specific areas of their bodies.
Jade Roller and Gua Sha Set
A Jade roller and gua sha set is a skincare tool kit used to perform facial massage and promote lymphatic drainage. The set typically includes a jade roller and a gua sha tool. To learn more about Gua Sha see above.
“Pso-Rite” is a self-massage tool to relieve tension and soreness in the Psoas muscle. It is a patented massage tool designed to mimic the pressure and intensity of a deep tissue massage, allowing users to apply targeted pressure to specific body areas.
A Power Plate is a whole-body vibration platform designed to help users achieve their fitness and wellness goals. The platform uses high-frequency vibrations to stimulate the muscles, creating a reflexive contraction that can help to improve muscle strength, balance, and flexibility.
Power Plates typically consist of a large platform attached to a motor, generating vibrations. Users stand, sit, or lie on the platform and adjust the vibration frequency and amplitude to suit their needs.
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