Deep Tissue Massage is possibly the most misused term in massage therapy. Most of the public, and unfortunately many massage therapists, confuse this very specific massage with a firm traditional Swedish Massage. However, there is a huge difference between the two.
Swedish Massage is very much used for relaxation purposes, whilst Deep Tissue techniques are used largely to help relieve discomfort.
So What is the Difference?
Swedish Massage uses a combination of broad strokes combined with a flowing rhythm to achieve a deep state of relaxation. Although this is a great way to deal with the stresses and strains of everyday life, it actually does very little to get rid of serious tension or pain that has developed over a period.
In comparison, Deep Tissue Massage uses very specific techniques, very similar to that of Myofascia release, in order to manipulate the muscles and connective tissues that are responsible for either maintaining or creating the problem. I personally believe that real Deep Tissue techniques should not be considered as a type of massage, as the client is very unlikely to be able to relax until the end of the session. In my opinion, Deep Tissue Massage should be considered as more a form of physical therapy due to the fact that collaboration in the form of movement is required from the client.
Should you find yourself asking for a Deep Tissue Massage at any other clinic and the therapist starts by applying lots of oil and uses broad palm strokes, you know you are not having a deep tissue but a somewhat distorted version of it.
What Happens During a Session?
Deep Tissue Massage Tunbridge Wells start each session by taking a full health history, followed by a complete analysis of your body whilst it is both moving and still. This gives us a better understanding of your needs and the therapy required to address the discomfort and or pain that you’re experiencing.
A variety of techniques are used by our team of massage therapists, including:
Active mobilisation. Deep, firm strokes are applied whilst you assist the therapist by flexing and extending your muscles. This allows you to deal with the discomfort created during the strokes in a more effective way while the tissue relaxes and opens.
Passive mobilisation. This technique is similar to active mobilisation, the only difference being that the therapist creates movement whilst you’re completely relaxed. It is a more relaxing experience for you.
Direct static pressure. The therapist applies direct firm pressure with either their thumb or elbow to specific points on a muscle in order to encourage relaxation. Slow and controlled stroking is also used (often with the elbow) in order to allow you to fully relax. A great technique used to deactivate trigger points.
Cross fibre. The therapist runs his/her fingertips, elbow or knuckles across the fibre of the muscle in order to widen the fibers that have been restricted due to tension. It is not used extensively but can be very effective when needed.
Ultimately, Deep Tissue Massage sessions are a great way to keep your body in top condition. Whether you’re are a keen athlete or you’re stuck in the office for 10 hours every day, regular sessions can be highly beneficial. Deep Tissue Massage Tunbridge Wells recommends a series of 3/5 sessions to begin with, depending on the condition your muscles are in. This should be followed by a maintenance program/session every three weeks. The benefits are great and your body will be less likely to build up tension that can cause you pain.