During a deep tissue massage the deeper layers of muscle and soft tissue are manipulated by the massage therapist. The use of pressure directly on this top layer of muscle, along with massage oils, help to the therapist to reach the deeper layers of muscle.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF DEEP TISSUE MASSAGE?
The main benefits of a deep tissue massage on the body include:
Reducing lower back pain
Releasing tension around the neck and shoulders
Upper back relief
Relaxing tight muscles in the calf, leg and arms
In addition to these physical changes, some people find a deep tissue massage to be more relaxing than softer massages. This comes down to personal preference and it is worth asking your therapist what level of pressure they estimate they use. As every massage therapist is slightly different you may find a different type of massage suits you better with certain therapists than others.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU GET A DEEP TISSUE MASSAGE?
There is no set number of deep tissue massages which you can have in a certain time period. A regular person can gain benefit from this type of massage on a monthly basis. This will keep your body fresh and relaxed without over doing things.
If you are an athlete or involved in high levels of training deep tissue massages can aid recovery and help protect the athlete against injury. High level performers should discuss this with their trainers, coaches and therapists to find the right balance.
WHAT SHOULD I DO BEFORE A DEEP TISSUE MASSAGE?
Because deep tissue massages use large amounts of pressure, we would recommend having only a light meal prior to the massage if needed. The last thing you want when you are trying to relax is to feel uncomfortable while trying to digest a large meal! To gain the most benefit from your massage its best to be as relaxed as possible before starting. Now I know what you are thinking, ‘isnt the massage supposed to do the relaxing?’. Well yes, but having an already relaxed body will ensure you get the most out of the massage. To do this we recommend arriving 10 minutes before your appointment. This will enable you to clear your head and put the phone away to focus on your massage. Unclench your jaw and relax your shoulders. We hold large amounts of tension in these areas without even noticing. You will start to be more consciously relaxed and enjoy your massage all the more!
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO AFTER A DEEP TISSUE MASSAGE?
Drink plenty of water – this will help you to recover from the small tears in the muscle fibres which will occur during the massage. It will also help to get rid of any toxins which have built up in your body.
Take a shower – having a warm shower after the massage can help relax the body (and clean off any excess oils used!)
You may feel sore or stiff after the massage and even into the next couple of days depending how often you have massages. This is completely normal. Try to relax your muscles and avoid tensing up.
HOW DO YOU GIVE A DEEP TISSUE MASSAGE?
Deep tissue massages are one of the harder types of massage to give so we recommend a trained massage therapist if you are considering having/giving one.
However if you are looking to learn then the below video gives a great quick tutorial for beginners.