For thousands of years, massage has been a crucial component of Chinese medicine. According to one of the most frequently referenced studies, massage can boost serotonin and dopamine by about the same amount (30% and 28%, respectively), while reducing cortisol (the stress molecule), on average, by 31%.
With archives dating back to the second century BCE, Chinese massage techniques attempt to improve overall health by relaxing the passage of energy, or “Qi,” around the body, in contrast to deep tissue or sports massage, which concentrate on releasing tight muscular knots by concentrating blood flow to the area.
Qi—The Concept Behind Chinese Massage
Qi (or ch’i) refers to the “life force” or “energy flow” that exists throughout every living thing. It is literally translated as “breath” or “air.”
It is a comprehensive ideology that penetrates numerous facets of Chinese culture, including calligraphy and martial arts. Even if you don’t belong to Eastern ideologies, you may be able to appreciate this notion as the need to establish balance and calmness in your day-to-day activities.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, the body has its own innate qi patterns that flow through meridians. It is believed that many illnesses’ symptoms are brought on by imbalances and blockages in these pathways as well as by qi deficiency in certain organs.
Through a number of methods, including diet, exercise, acupuncture, and body massage, imbalances can be gradually addressed.
The therapist may make a variety of modifications during a traditional Chinese massage to stimulate the meridians. This movement is essential because it reduces stress and muscle strain.
The two work together to enhance the client’s general health by energizing the meridians. The TCM also supports the body’s immune system and detoxification processes. Increased overall healthiness is the result of this therapeutic approach.
Chinese Massage Techniques
Chinese massage can be divided into two categories.
- Tui Na (pronounced “twee na”) combines kneading, chopping, and stretching motions to ease tight areas and blockages in the body’s muscular system. It is similar to deep tissue massage in several ways.
- Zhi Ya (pronounced “zee yah”) uses pushing and pinching methods on the skin’s surface, similar to acupressure, reflexology, and qigong.
The goal of both types of traditional Chinese massage is to restore balance and jump-start the body’s natural healing process by releasing both physical and energetic tension.
Somerset body massage therapist use compression with Chinese massage. Direct pressure is applied to a patient by pushing and twisting actions known as compression. This pressure can release knots in the muscles and ease stiffness. Additionally, compression enhances blood circulation.
Friction uses a method similar to other types of massage. In order to realign muscles and loosen knots or tension, it requires rubbing or gliding motions. To warm up the muscles, massage therapists may apply heat by massaging the area in circular strokes.
To exert force, a therapist may rock, shake, or vibrate a region. This relieves stress, enhances digestion, and clears stagnation, allowing the Qi to flow properly once more.
Pinching and grasping
The soft tissue will be the center of the therapist’s attention as they knead, pinch, and twist the area. This releases stress and promotes Qi flow via the meridians when applied to areas like the upper shoulders, for example.
What about acupuncture?
Naturally, acupuncture plays a significant role in Somerset body massage, which is why the two are frequently combined. Additionally, you could have a mix of these two along with other TCM modalities, depending on your practitioner’s diagnosis and advice.
However, they can be utilized separately. So, if your practitioner thinks you could benefit from the concepts of tui na but do not want to attempt acupuncture (“Maybe someone is afraid of needles,” explains Hsu), then Tui na might be for you.
Joint manipulation, which focuses on the axis of body components like the shoulders and hips, entails tugging and turning motions to expand joint range. Additionally, it encourages flexibility in the limbs and spine.
Benefits for Your Soul, Mind and Body
This massage combines a number of advantages by combining several techniques and procedures, many of which are shared by all techniques:
- Focuses particularly on the use of Chinese massage techniques to restore the balance of the meridians that contribute to the free flow of energy in the body
- Boosts resistance, especially when combined with ayurvedic massage techniques that remove toxins from the body
- Enhances blood flow and cell oxygenation
- Has a psychological and emotional impact that boosts self-esteem
- Releases dopamine and serotonin, which elevates mood
- Stretch the muscles and use techniques that encourage muscular relaxation
- Alleviates depression by precisely applying pressure to Qi trigger points, having effects on the body and mind
- Enhances the quality of sleep
- Aids in the prevention of asthma by reducing the contractions of the respiratory tract’s unconscious muscles
But Wait, Here Are Some Precautions to Know
There are a few things you should think about and do before obtaining a Chinese massage.
Make sure you don’t have any injuries or underlying medical conditions that would make massage dangerous. People who have specific skin disorders or fractures, for instance, might not be good candidates for massage therapy.
Additionally, before getting a massage, people who are expecting or have high blood pressure should speak with their doctor. Finding a trained and trustworthy practitioner who has received the appropriate instruction and certification in Chinese massage is also crucial. By doing so, the possibility of harm or other issues may be reduced.
In order to feel safe and comfortable throughout the massage, one should also discuss any worries or queries with the therapist before the treatment. People can experience the numerous advantages of Chinese massage safely and effectively by following these guidelines.
Summing It Up
Chinese massage may appear extreme, yet it offers good overall health and well-being, stress reduction, pain and stiffness relief, better flexibility and function, and improved circulation.
Chinese therapeutic massage practices have always offered significant health advantages, and contemporary science is increasingly acknowledging their effectiveness. It is worthwhile to learn more about Chinese massage and incorporate it into your daily health and wellness routine.
Book a consultation today for Somerset body massage here.