I have provided a brief summary of the treatments I provide in order to help you think about what treatment might be most suitable for you.
The term ‘holistic‘ comes from the Greek word ‘holos’ meaning whole. The holistic approach takes a person’s physical, emotional and spiritual experiences into account and works to facilitate physical and mental relaxation and healing. The aim of holistic massage is to restore balance within the body and mind and promote a sense of well-being.
A variety of techniques may be used, such as stroking, kneading, draining or pressing the soft tissues of the body. These techniques relax muscles, increase oxygen supply in the blood, release toxins from muscle tissues and aid lymphatic drainage. Cultures from all around the globe have used massage for centuries to relieve pain and anxiety, stimulate circulation and tonify systems within the body. Holistic massage can be used to help the body rediscover its natural balance and healing mechanisms.
Deep tissue massage
Deep tissue massage is a type of massage therapy that focuses on realigning deeper layers of muscles and connective tissue. It is especially helpful for chronically tense areas of the body, such as stiff necks, low back tightness, and sore shoulders.
Some of the same massage strokes are used as in holistic massage therapy but the movement is slower and the pressure is deeper and concentrated on areas of tension and pain. Where there is chronic muscle tension or injury there are usually adhesions, which are bands of painful, rigid tissue in the muscles, tendons and ligaments. Adhesions can block circulation, limit movement and cause inflammation and pain.
Deep tissue massage works by physically breaking down these adhesions in order to restore normal movement. To do this, the massage therapist uses direct deep pressure or friction applied across the grain of the muscles. These techniques are helpful in reducing pain and discomfort in the body and help to break down adhesions and scar tissue in the muscles caused by long term tension, poor posture or injury.
Reflexology is a holistic therapy which can be received by anyone at any age, from new-born babies to the elderly and frail. Treatment is generally of the feet, although hands can be worked on also. Clients sit on a reclining chair and remove their shoes and socks. The therapist uses their hands to apply pressure to the feet, lower leg and sometimes to the hands. The experience is usually deeply relaxing.
Reflexology is based on the Chinese principle that there are points on the feet and hands – known as reflexes. There are over 7,000 nerve endings in the feet and these connect with various parts of the body. Recent research, (Manzanares J), suggests that ill-health or imbalance in an organ or area of the body manifests in the feet in a complex of excess nervous tissues. The special finger and thumb movements used in reflexology help to untangle these neural adhesions and restore the body’s ability to heal itself and re-establish homeostasis.
Benefits of reflexology
The short-term benefits for the body include: release of toxins, increase in circulation of blood and lymph, relaxation of tense muscles, improved breathing, calming of the mind and a rebalancing of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.
The longer-term benefits of reflexology tend to be a sense of greater relaxation, balance and wellbeing. These may be experienced at the first treatment, or make take longer to become apparent. The signs of improvement that people tend to notice are: improved sleep, increased ability to manage stress, greater energy, a stronger immune system and a greater sense of balance and health.
Reflexology can be helpful in speeding recovery after injury or surgery and may help with the symptoms of a range of different conditions including headaches, poor digestion, stress, anxiety, bladder conditions, high blood pressure, menstrual difficulties and menopause.
Reflexology is not an alternative to seeking medical advice, but can work alongside other medical treatments.
Indian Head Massage
Indian head massage is based on the Ayurvedic system of healing which has been practiced in India for over a thousand years The aim of Indian head massage is to release stress that has accumulated in the tissues, muscles and joints of the head, face, neck and shoulders.
What does it involve? The client remains fully clothed and sits in a chair for the treatment. The therapist uses a range of different movements including application of deep kneading and friction movements over the neck, shoulder and scalp areas. Some of the strokes are stimulating and others are soothing and relaxing. Pressure points on the face are also used. The session will usually last from thirty to forty-five minutes.
What is it good for? Indian head massage is especially good for relieving stress, tension, fatigue, insomnia, headaches, migraine and sinusitis. It is a deeply calming and relaxing experience which likely to leave you feeling energised and better able to concentrate.
There are a number of conditions where Indian head massage should be avoided, and so it is important to discuss your health history with the therapist. If you have had any major illness or surgery it is always advisable to seek the advice of your GP or regular medical practitioner prior to treatment.
Seated Acupressure Chair Massage
Seated acupressure chair massage is a gentle and non-invasive treatment which is suitable for most people. Clients remain clothed and relax on a special portable massage chair. The treatment lasts 30 minutes.
How it works: Pressure points on the head, neck, shoulders, spine and lower back are stimulated to improve the flow of energy throughout the body and balance and strengthen the body’s muscular, circulatory and nervous systems and leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed and energised.
Benefits: Seated acupressure massage works to improve mental focus and concentration and is excellent for relieving stress and tension and for loosening knotted and tight muscles. It can help with conditions such as: backache, repetitive strain injury, headaches, migraines, fatigue, eyestrain, anxiety, irritability, insomnia and stiffness in the shoulders and neck.
Is it suitable for everyone? Seated acupressure massage is suitable for most people. However, it would be important to let me know if you have any recent fractures or sprains, or if you suffer from any long-standing medical conditions. (Treatment would be unsuitable for those with acute musculoskeletal conditions, severe cases of Osteoporosis or Thrombosis).
Reiki is a healing technique that is based on the principle that the therapist can channel energy into the patient by means of touch. This activates natural healing processes and can help to restore physical and emotional well-being.
The Japanese word ‘Reiki’ literally translates as universal life force energy. This system of healing was developed by Mikao Usui in the early 20th century. Reiki supports orthodox medicine or can be used alone but is not a replacement for conventional treatment
How it works: The client remains fully clothed and can lie on a treatment couch or sit comfortably supported in a chair. Reiki is offered through light, non-invasive touch with the practitioner’s hands placed and held on a series of locations on the head and front and back of the torso. Some Reiki practitioners will hold their hands just above the body, and this is particularly helpful with clients who are frail or infirm. A session may last between 40- 90 minutes.
What is it good for? Reiki can have a beneficial effect on all forms of illness and difficulty. This includes minor problems like headaches, tension and anxiety as well as more serious illnesses. Reiki is known to improve the healing rate and reducing the time needed to stay in hospital.
Benefits: Although people typically leave a Reiki session feeling refreshed, they do sometimes notice feeling more tired afterwards. This is not viewed as an adverse reaction, but rather as the body’s natural healing response. People commonly report a sense of calm and mental clarity and sleeping well after a Reiki treatment.