Do you remember your last therapeutic massage? A lot of people have to think back quite a long way. It’s one of those things that the vast majority of us enjoy for its relaxing and healing effects, but it often gets lost in the shuffle of daily life. Some people think of massage as an expensive habit that doesn’t have any real benefits aside from an hour of deep relaxation. But is this true? Does massage therapy have any health benefits beyond relaxation? In short, is massage therapy good for your health?
There are a lot of different reasons why the answer to this question is ‘yes.’ Various notable health benefits have been documented in various medical journals, and the evidence is growing every year.
Let’s start with sleep. That’s not usually the first thing people discuss in terms of massage therapy health benefits, but it’s an important and underrated benefit. Often times, people don’t sleep well (or have difficulty falling asleep) due to chronic muscular tension and stress that gets stored up in the body throughout days and weeks. By smoothing and straightening the muscles to increase circulation, quality of sleep can be significantly increased. Does this mean you have to have frequent massage therapy sessions in order to sleep better? Not at all – just one or two sessions per month can have real benefits for people who have trouble sleeping.
Circulation is another great benefit. When the circulatory system is functioning optimally, all of the body’s various systems have a much easy time maintaining good health. Better circulation leads to more strength, better metabolism, better athletic performance, and even better mental clarity. Massage therapy promotes excellent circulation throughout the whole body.
Another great benefit of working the muscles in a therapeutic way is the release of toxins. As these toxins build up in the muscles, they affect overall health, and can cause soreness and stiffness – even blemishes on the skin. Regular massage therapy can help eliminate toxins stored up in the muscles and promote overall health.
Flexibility is another plus when it comes to massage therapy. Many athletes are naturally flexible, especially those who practice a lot of yoga – but experiencing long periods of inactivity after exercise is more and more common these days. Massage therapy is a great way to experience passive stretching and healing from all the various stresses of the day or week.
There are a lot of massage therapists out there
Even if you live in a small town, there are probably a number of options when it comes to massage therapy. But if you live in a more populated area, the number of therapists can be truly mind-boggling. Making the right choice can mean the difference between a professional and highly beneficial massage therapy session – with all of the health benefits – and a frustrating sub-par massage that could leave you sore, frustrated, and still seeking relief. Look for certified and reputable therapists with solid reputations in their communities, and you’ll be on the right track. Now go enjoy that massage!