Massage > Definition and History
Massage is an instinctive
human response that when we bump ourselves that we rub it
and the 'ouch' soon goes away. This basic instinct has been
slowly developed over the countless generations into a
sophisticated healing art and science.
massage is an age-old healing art, which can alleviate
physical, mental and emotional ailments. The practice dates
to the Chinese in 3000 BC. Other references in the bible
refer to anointing the body with oil. In 460 BC, Hypocrites
prescribed it as a beneficial treatment for his patients.
In one form or another, it
developed in all the nations of the old World. Hippocrates,
who is considered a father of medicine, said that all
physicians should have experience of the techniques of
rubbing, It is recognised that rubbing can bind a joint that
is too loose and loosen a joint that is too rigid.
Furthermore, rubbing can make the flesh and cause parts to
waste, it is these latter beliefs that are so important for
those concerned with figure improvement.
In 1813, the Royal
Central Institute was established in Stockholm, Sweden, and
here the known massage movements were studied scientifically
and systematised. This was the most important single
development in the field in modern times and it is because
of this that remedial massage is often called "Swedish".
the late 1800's and early 1900's, the industrial revolution was driving women
mad. Husbands would only have sex with their wives to procreate and the women
were left with the kids and the gentlemen were entertained by courtesans.
The medical massage at the time was to ease "women's madness"; a female genital
massage and the orgasm released their stress. The doctors delivering this
service soon tired and the vibrator was invented.
As the industrial revolution progressed and new drugs and surgeries were
invented, massage almost fell from common use. With the criminalisation of sex
for money, sex workers (perhaps inspired by Dr Swift) began to use massage as
their service description which had the effect of degrading the massage industry
and during the late 1900's practitioners began to reclaim the art
The consequence was that massage became politicised and regulated in some
countries. In New Zealand and Australia, the legalisation of sex work has helped
massage regain widespread respect although in some sectors of society, the word
massage still carries some unhealthy connotations.
With the growth in population and advancements in communication, massage is now
flourishing and over the past one hundred years, new styles and applications of
massage have evolved.
DEFINITION OF MASSAGE
Massage is a scientific
method of manipulating the soft tissues of the body for
specific effect. Its objective may be the restoration of
function, application of pleasure, release of tension and/or the re-establishment of the
contours where this is desirable.
Massage Therapy is:
- The holistic application
of physical touch to affect the systems of the body; ie.
the muscular, skeletal, digestive, elimination,
respiratory, circulatory, lymphatic, endocrine, emotional,
mental and nervous systems.
- It is the manipulation the
soft tissues of the body with the hands for therapeutic,
healing, relaxing and pleasurable effects.
- It is the loving touch of
the heart expressed through the hands.
- It is not
physiotherapy or any practice of manipulation of the
There are many different
approaches and applications to massage.
- Swedish Massage,
a general whole body massage using oils on the skin to
facilitate treatment. This is the basis of all Western
forms of massage treatment.
with this Japanese style you generally stay dressed and
are treated on the floor. This system balances all bodily
- Deep Tissue,
this approach is powerful and often painful although the
benefits can be great. It is helpful in restructuring the
body, improving posture.
- Holistic Pulsing,
clothes on, you are gently rocked, the rocking or pulsing
- Sensual Massage often both the
client and therapist are naked and there may be some
sexual arousal. This is excellent for couples to help
develop intimacy, more
- Tantric Massage.
usually a sensual massage whereby the therapist assists
you to understand and control or re-direct energy. A basic
understanding and acceptance of the human aura and energy
centres is advisable before taking this treatment
(although some therapists within the sex industry use this
term for sensual - sexual massage without any real
knowledge of what tantra is, as it is a trendy concept).
With a qualified therapist it can be of great benefit
toward liberation of body, mind and spirit.
- Aroma therapy,
the use of naturally occurring essential oils to enhance
treatment. Often used as a treatment in themselves with
different oils being applied to different parts of the
body. Pure essential oils have great healing properties
and we will have some pages on them in the near future. more.
- In all there are over 400 recognised styles of massage.
Massage Therapy helps
relaxation, releasing stress and tension in our bodies.
Too much unresolved stress in
our lives can cause constant muscular tension. This tension
or tightness reduces the flow of blood and oxygen to the
muscles and organs and also restricts nerve & lymph supply.
Tension creates a tendency for a build up of toxins in the
body, and reduces the flow of the more subtle energy or life
force (Prana or Chi). Tension can lead to symptomatic
feelings of fatigue, heaviness, aches and pains, tightness
of muscles and stiffness. Muscular stress can increase the
likelihood of strains and injuries. Muscular stress also
distorts the skeletal structure which further compounds
existing problems and creates new ones.
BENEFITS OF MASSAGE
The following are some of the
beneficial results that you can receive from massage
- Improve circulation
Increase blood circulation and the flow of tissue fluid (lymph)
- Improve lymphatic drainage
- Help breathing Stimulate
breathing Assist the flow of nutrients & oxygen to tissues
- Lower the heart and pulse rate
- Detoxify the body systems
Hasten excretion or waste products
- Assist weight loss
- Nourish the skin (with the
right oils) Promote nourishment, repair and renewal of
- Assist in removal of
deposits of tissue
- Stimulate activity in skin
and its glands
- Improve muscle tone Induce
- Soothe and relax nerves
- Relieve Stress
- Release emotional tension
- Relieve pain in certain
- Relax mind and body deeply
- Give pleasure
- Create a feeling of
Are situations where it is advisable to be cautious about
having massage treatment. Conditions such as: Acute
inflammation, redness, swelling, marked breathing
difficulty, fever, skin rash, Varicose veins. If you have
any of these conditions or other concerns, check with your
therapist at the time of booking your treatment.
Massage Therapy is a safe and effective treatment which
benefits people of all ages and conditions.
Massage – Naturally Healing
On line massage
A history of massage in New Zealand