Differentiating Between Medical Massage and Relaxation Massage

Article by Herb Kimble.

Summary: There are various categories of massage therapy available to the public. However, choosing one may be more complicated than you might think.

There have been an increasing amount of people considering massage therapy, but there is also more confusion as to what type of massage they should opt for.

For most people, what usually comes to mind when the word “massage” comes up is the standard Swedish massage which involves 30 minutes to an hour of gliding strokes on different parts of the body. Then, there is the other perception that a Asian massage parlor is the standard go-to destination for any type of massage.

However, there are more than 100 variations and techniques of massage therapy, and some are considered more along the lines of physical therapy than an ordinary massage.

Medical Massage Techniques

Medical massage utilizes both Eastern and Western styles of massage therapy, but the length and process are somewhat different. With medical massages, the focus is on rehabilitation and restoration. A person may even have a prescription from a doctor for massage therapy to help speed the recovery process from an injury.

Relaxation Massage

Massages that focus on relaxation fall under most Western or Eastern styles of techniques and is the standard in most establishments. Most of these techniques utilize long, gliding strokes, kneading strokes, or even managing pressure points. The goal is to reduce stress and increase relaxation. These sessions can last anywhere from thirty minutes to an hour, with the most popular being the hour.