Benefits of Massage
The Benefits of Massage at Bodylogics
In order to understand the benefits and effects of massage, it is important to consider how the body responds physiologically.
Massage involves two types of responses:
1. The mechanical responses as a result of pressure and movement as the soft tissues are manipulated.
2. The reflex responses in which the nerves respond to stimulation.
At Bodylogics, we are trained to work with each client on an individual basis to diagnose their requirements and needs. We take great pride in ensuring you understand the fundamental concepts of your body. We have outlined below the main advantages of massage and how it can benefit every aspect of your life.
The Physiological Effects of Massage
Effects on the Skeletal System
The Skeletal System refers to the bones in your body. Your muscles are all attached to bones. Regular massage can help increase joint mobility by reducing any thickening of the connective tissue and helping to release restrictions in the fascia. It helps to free adhesion’s, break down scar tissue and decrease inflammation. As a result it can help to restore range of motion to stiff joints. Massage improves muscle tone and balance, reducing the physical stress placed on bones and joints.
Effects on the Muscular System
The Muscular System refers to the muscles of the body. There are 650 muscles in the human body. Regular massage relieves muscular tightness, stiffness, spasms and restrictions in the muscle tissue. It can increase flexibility in the muscles due to muscular relaxation. This relaxation effect comes about from the release of the hormone cortisol (our stress busting hormone). Massage increases blood circulation bringing more oxygen and nutrients into the muscle. This reduces muscle fatigue and soreness. Massage also promotes rapid removal of toxins and waste products from the muscle.
Effects on the Cardiovascular System
The Cardiovascular System (or CV system) consists of the heart and all the blood vessels in your body. It is vital for good health. Massage can improve blood circulation by mechanically assisting the venous flow of blood back to the heart. Massage can dilate (open up) blood vessels helping them to work more efficiently and therefore transfer oxygen and nutrients quicker. Massage can help temporarily to decrease blood pressure, due to dilation of capillaries. Massage can reduce ischaemia (ischaemia is a reduction in the flow of blood to body parts, often marked by pain and tissue dysfunction) which is why it is recommended to have regular massage, especially when taking part in regular sports activity.
Effects on the Lymphatic System
The Lymphatic System is essential for good health and immunity. The Lymphatic System helps you fight disease and infection as it carries the white blood cells. Regular massage helps to reduce oedema (excess fluid in the tissue) by increasing lymphatic drainage and the removal of waste from the system. Regular massage may help to strengthen the immune system, due to the increase in white blood cells.
Effects on the Nervous System
The Nervous System comprises of all your sensory inputs within the body. Without this you would not be able to do anything. Massage stimulates sensory receptors: this can either stimulate or soothe nerves depending on the techniques used. Massage also stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, helping promote relaxation and the reduction of stress. Massage helps to reduce pain by the release of endorphins (endorphins are also known to elevate the mood). These endorphins then contribute to the overall stress levels of the body.
Effects on the Skin
Your Skin is the biggest organ of the body. Healthy skin is essential for overall health and well-being. Massage helps with improved circulation to the skin, increased nutrition to the cells and encouraging cell regeneration Massage can lead to increased production of sweat from the sweat glands, helping to excrete urea and waste products through the skin. Vaso-dilation can be an effect of massage. This is where the surface capillaries rise up closer to the skin surface therefore helping to improve the skin’s colour. Massage is also believed to help with increased sebum production, helping to improve the skin’s suppleness and resistance to infection.
Effects on the Respiratory System
The Respiratory System refers to the function of your lungs and the transportation of oxygen around the body. Regular massage deepens respiration and improves lung capacity by relaxing any tightness in the respiratory muscles. It also slows down the rate of respiration due to the reduced stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system.
Effects on the Digestive System
The Digestive System is where your food is broken down and processed, ready to be put fed into the blood stream. Massage can increase peristalsis in the large intestine, helping to relieve constipation, colic and gas. Massage can also promote the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system, which stimulates digestion.
Effects on the Urinary System
- Massage increases urinary output due to the increased circulation and lymph drainage from the tissues.
The Psychological Effects of Massage
- Can help reduce stress and anxiety by relaxing both mind and body
- Can create a feeling of well-being and enhanced self-esteem
- It can promote positive body awareness and an improved body image through relaxation
- Known to ease emotional trauma through relaxation