Soft Touch Bodywork (5 Benefits!)
Soft touch bodywork, a delicate derivative of tantric massage, has long existed in therapeutic techniques. Yet, many remain unaware of its profound impacts, often dismissing it based on prevailing misconceptions that more invasive forms of massage must produce greater physical results.
In today’s blog, I want to provide some science-backed research on the benefits of soft-touch bodywork. Deep tissue, sports massage and cupping all have their place, but sometimes it’s better to take it easy. Feel soft hands flowing gently over your skin, allowing stress to slip away effortlessly.
So without further ado, let’s delve deep into the five benefits of Soft Touch Massage that extend beyond mere relaxation.
Enjoy! Maya xxx
1. Enhanced Emotional Wellbeing
Imagine a session where the subtle strokes of hands induce a profound emotional calm. This isn’t magic but pure science. Let’s look at some research and see how physical touch affects the chemical makeup of our bodies and our emotional well-being:
Connection to Oxytocin Production
Like that practised in soft touch bodywork, soft touch stimulates the release of oxytocin – often dubbed the ‘love hormone’. This hormone, pivotal to bonding and social interactions, helps foster trust, reduces fear, and increases empathy. The gentle touch can fill our system with this heartwarming hormone.
Reduction of Cortisol Levels
On the flip side of oxytocin’s euphoria is cortisol, the notorious stress hormone. Prolonged periods of stress can lead to an overproduction of cortisol, causing detrimental health impacts.
“Average cortisol level was found to increase approximately 9 times in stressful periods compared with that in relaxed periods.” National Library of Medicine
With its gentle techniques, soft touch bodywork has been observed to lower cortisol levels, creating a serene state of mind.
2. Improvement in Physical Pain Management
Anyone who has experienced soft touch bodywork will laud its efficacy in pain alleviation. But what’s the underlying mechanism?
Neurological Mechanisms at Play
The ‘Gate Control Theory of Pain‘ posits that non-painful input, like soft touch, can close the nerve “gates” to painful input, preventing pain sensations from travelling to the central nervous system. This means that the soothing strokes of soft-touch bodywork can block out the pain. Another excellent example of pain prevention via this method is using a TENS machine which uses electrical nerve stimulation to prevent pain signals from being sent to the brain.
Increased Blood Circulation
There’s more than just neurological magic at play. Soft touch enhances blood circulation. With improved circulation comes the enhanced delivery of oxygen and essential nutrients to tissues, coupled with the efficient removal of metabolic waste. This not only relieves pain but also promotes cellular health. Increased blood circulation is the primary physical benefit of almost all forms of massage, and soft touch is no exception.
3. Reconnect With Your Own Body
Soft touch bodywork is an invitation to reconnect – not just with a partner, but with one’s own self.
Amid the daily hustle, we often lose touch with our own bodily cues. Soft touch therapy brings one’s attention back to subtle physical sensations, fostering heightened body awareness and intuition.
Reconnection with Oneself
For those who’ve faced trauma, dissociation – a feeling of being disconnected from oneself – can be a haunting reality. With its grounding techniques, soft touch bodywork offers a safe space to reconcile with one’s physical being. Body confidence comes easily with regular sessions. Put yourself in the hands of a professional, and you’ll be surprised how ‘normal’ being undressed in the company of another person can become.
Non-judgemental, professional environments can significantly benefit one’s body confidence and self-esteem.
4. Soft Touch Bodywork Can Strengthen Your Immune System
If told that a massage could boost immunity, many would be sceptical. However, soft touch bodywork’s influence on our body’s defence system is truly intriguing.
Lymphatic System Stimulation
The lymphatic system acts as our internal security guard, detecting and fighting off invaders. With their gentle strokes, soft touch techniques stimulate the lymphatic flow, boosting the body’s natural detoxification and defence processes.
Soft Touch and White Blood Cells
Emerging studies indicate that soft-touch bodywork can elevate the activity and production of white blood cells – our body’s tiny soldiers. This accelerates illness recovery and fortifies the body’s preventive measures against them.
5. Enhanced Intimacy and Relationship Bonding
Touch, in relationships, speaks a silent language, one that soft touch bodywork is fluent in.
Relationships thrive on understanding, and touch is an eloquent communicator. Soft touch offers couples a platform to express, comfort, and connect without uttering a word, strengthening their bond.
The Role of Vulnerability
Soft touch bodywork is a dance of trust and mutual respect. As individuals open up to the experience, they inadvertently open up to their partners, paving the way for deeper emotional connections.
The Benefits of Soft Touch Bodywork – My Conclusion
The tapestry of all bodywork forms is woven with myriad benefits, some apparent and others delightfully surprising. From enhancing emotional resilience to fostering physical well-being, this art holds a promise for all. Whether exploring it for self-care or strengthening bonds, soft touch bodywork is a journey worth embarking upon.
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