What are the different types of massages and why do you need them?

What are the different types of massages and why do you need them?

Massage involves manual manipulation of the body, such as rubbing and kneading. A therapist may use light, medium, or firm pressure on the client's muscles and joints to relieve pain and tension. Here we discover what type of massage exists and which style suits you best.

Types of massages
A woman is receiving a relaxation back massage in a spa salon. Candles with ethereal oil are on the desk in front of her. Photo: Miljko
Source: Getty Images

What are all the different types of massages? When it comes to your body, mind, and spirit, massage may be the answer. Try various techniques and practitioners until you find what works best for you.

How many types of massage are there?

There are many types offered around the world. Some are customised for specific patients and therefore depend on the professional experience of a masseuse. Here are various types of massages and their benefits.

1. Swedish

Different types of massages
A guest gets Swedish therapy at Soneva Fushi Resort & Spa, a 30-minute plane ride from Male, the capital of the Maldives. Photo: Gerhard Joren
Source: Getty Images

It is a light, all-over massage that is ideal for those who:

  • I'd like to wish to relieve stress.
  • Need a soft touch

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It is a great option for a massage when you need to unwind and untangle those knots in your muscles. It often lasts between 60 and 90 minutes. You will receive it while draped on a sheet on a massage table. It is best for back pain. The therapists will likely employ several different techniques, including:

  • Kneading
  • They are long, sweeping strokes toward the chest.
  • Movements in a tight circle
  • Tapping and vibrating
  • Methods of Passive Joint Motion

2. Deep tissue

What are all the different types of massages?
Deep Tissue Therapy. Photo: Microgen
Source: Getty Images

Pressure is applied more heavily during this technique than during a Swedish one. When considering options for muscular issues like aches, injuries, imbalances, and tightness, this is a nice one. It is offered in most envies globally.

Persistent soreness in the muscles. It is one in which the therapist applies substantial pressure to the power and connective tissue layers deeply to release chronic tension. Sixty to ninety minutes are allotted for the massage. While deep tissue work may be more vigorous, you should not experience discomfort afterwards.

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3. Shiatsu

List of all types of massages
Zen Shiatsu therapist. Photo: Bartolome Ozonas
Source: Getty Images

Anyone who requires stress reduction, pain relief, and overall muscle relaxation can seek a Shiatsu massage. This style of Japanese massage:

  • Induces a state of mental and physical ease
  • Assists in reducing discomfort
  • Perhaps helpful for headaches.
  • Helps relax muscles
  • alleviates sleeplessness and fatigue
  • Possibility of experiencing elevated emotions

A study published in 2019 indicated that when shiatsu therapy was used with conventional treatments for lower back pain, patients immediately improved symptoms and quality of life. A group of young athletes with sports-related concussions benefited greatly from self-shiatsu, according to a study published in 2018.

While the shiatsu style benefits the complete body, your therapist may concentrate on specific problem areas. The therapist will apply pressure to certain areas of your body with their hands, palms, and thumbs. Pressure is applied in pulses or rhythms. It can be performed while you are completely clothed. Most therapists will spend 60 to 90 minutes on a single shiatsu treatment.

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4. Sports

Types of massages for back pain
Belarus' Aryna Sabalenka undergoes back therapy during her semifinal match at the WTA Rome Open Women's tennis tournament on May 14, 2022, at Foro Italico in Rome. Photo: Tiziana Fabi
Source: Getty Images

Injuries to muscles from overuse, such as those sustained in athletic competition, can be helped by receiving a sports massage. You can use it to lessen the likelihood of injuries, making it an excellent choice if prone to them. Among its many benefits are the following:

  • Adaptability augmentation
  • Elevate sporting prowess
  • Avert suffering
  • Minimise stress
  • Letting go of stress

A sports massage can be performed all over the body or just on areas that need improvement. We can switch between deep tissue work and relaxing strokes as needed. This is the best type of massage for athletes.

It can be performed with or without undress. If you would rather wear clothes during therapy, choose something lightweight and loose that will not restrict the therapist's ability to work on your muscles. You can wear short shorts and a tank top if you choose depending on the type of massage. It usually lasts between 60 and 90 minutes.

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5. Reflexology

How many types of massage are there?
Therapist massaging a woman's feet at a beauty spa. Photo: FG Trade
Source: Getty Images

In reflexology, pressure is applied to specific locations on the feet, hands, and ears. Those who need to unwind or regain their mojo will benefit the most from this. It is also an excellent choice for people who feel uneasy when touched all over.

Individuals who:

  • Relaxation
  • alleviated pain

Benefits: less tiredness, better sleep, less stress, higher spirits

Reflexology dramatically reduced the anxiety of patients undergoing cardiovascular procedures, compared to the control group, according to a review published in 2018. Reflexology was proven to help lymphoma patients with fatigue, pain, and sleep quality in a 2019 clinical trial.

Wear whatever is most comfortable, especially if you can get your legs out. It takes an average time length of between 30 and 60 minutes.

6. Thai

Types of massages at massage envy
Latina masseuse applying Thai technique to the young female client to stretch out hips and spine. Assisted spinal twist lying down on the futon. Photo: Daniel de la Hoz
Source: Getty Images

Active techniques like those in Thai massage are unparalleled when relieving pain and tension. In addition, it can assist in enhancing the following:

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  • Flexibility
  • Circulation
  • Vitality levels

In a manner reminiscent of yogic stretching, the entire body is worked on during a Thai massage session. Your therapist will apply pressure to your body using their palms and fingertips. You will be twisted and stretched in all kinds of ways, too.

Wear whatever is most at ease for you during the massage. Sixty to ninety minutes is the typical time frame for a Thai massage.

7. Lymphatic drainage

Types of massages and their benefits
Exhale spa on Arlington Street in Boston. Dianne Cecere, an Esthetician, does Lymphatic Drainage, Acupressure and Effleurage massage on a client at the hotel. Photo: Matthew West.
Source: Getty Images

Manual lymphatic drainage (MLD), or lymphatic drainage massage, is a light form that moves the lymph fluids around the body. Toxins are flushed out via the lymphatic system, and many health issues can benefit from increased circulation.

  • Lymphedema
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Edema
  • Skin Conditions
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Stress
  • Issues with digestion
  • Arthritis\Migraine

In 2014, scientists found that lymphatic drainage massage helped fibromyalgia patients more than connective tissue massage did. In the early stages after cancer surgery, MLD may help prevent the development of clinical lymphedema, according to an analysis of 17 papers published in 2021; however, it may not help with moderate to severe lymphedema. You may need this therapy if you suffer from any of the following.

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  • Failure of the heart to pump enough blood to the body
  • Prior history of stroke or blood clots
  • Currently spreading illness
  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Malfunctioning kidneys

You may either learn to give yourself a lymphatic drainage massage at home or visit a trained expert. You can consult your physician before you begin any new treatment. These sessions typically take an hour or more.

Tell your therapist what you want and why you are getting a massage, and if something does not seem right, say so. If you have any health issues, you should discuss with your doctor which type of massages you prefer before receiving one from the list above.

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