Compression massage is one of several therapeutic massage techniques used for sports massage therapy, medical massage therapy and other prescriptions of massage for optimal performance, improved mobility and treatment of pain or discomfort. Compression massage can be characterized as rhythmic compression into muscles used to create a deep hypremia (an increased amount of blood in the vessels of an organ or tissue in the body) and softening effect in the tissues. It is generally used as a warm-up for deeper, more specific massage work.
What is Compression Massage?
Compression is an effective massage technique performed by laying hands over a muscle area and pushing down onto the tissues. Hands are then lifted and moved to a different area and then repeated. The pressure of compressions can range from light to very deep. Compressions can also be performed with a slight rocking movement that can encourage the parasympathetic nervous system and promote relaxation. The compression technique applies pressure onto muscles, it is then held and released. This technique is then repeated. Compressions are used within many different types of massages including Swedish, therapeutic and deep tissue massages.
Benefits of Compression Massage
Compression, as a massage technique, has many benefits including relaxation, improved circulation and recovery. When compressions are performed on the muscles, it stimulates affects the parasympathetic nervous system and is able to alter mood and produce feelings of relaxation. Compressions also help to improve circulation into the muscles by initially restricting the blood flow which then encourage a larger amount of blood to the area. Improved blood circulation in the muscles is beneficial to improving tissue conditions and preparing muscles for activity- beneficial for treatments before an athletic event. An additional benefit of compression massage is for increasing healing to damaged tissues and speeding up recovery. Compressions accelerate the healing process by increasing oxygen and nutrients into the tissues. Oxygen and nutrients can work to repair and heal any damaged cells.