I'm delighted to be able to offer this ancient, innovative to treatment to my massage clients, because of the fantastic benefits it offers.
Little known in the west, but widely used elsewhere, Kansa wand and Ayurvedic facial reflexology is so beneficial because it's able to:
- release tension and adhesions in tissues, which in turn improves circulation by oxygenating the blood and stimulates the removal of waste
- relax facial muscles, reducing expression lines and promoting a more youthful appearance
- encourage the flow of subtle, unseen energies throughout the body, and particularly in the face, head and neck
For this treatment I will be working on your head, face, neck and chest. I start the massage without using oil, working on the Marmas1 of the head, face and neck. After that, oil is applied using a Kansa wand - new to the west but widely used in Ayurvedic massage - a bronze wand that has healing properties. The wand draws excess heat and toxins out of the body, helping to relax the tissue and smooth out facial lines. It is used with warmed Tridoshic oil3 which energises and balances the doshas2.
The entire massage is based on Ayurvedic face reflexology (Ayur means 'long life' and Veda means 'wisdom') which works on the Marmas1 - energies that flow and connect with each other, throughout your body.
I know that's a lot to take in, but although very new to the west, Kansa wand and Ayurvedic Facial Reflexology has been promoting health and well being for hundreds of years and I'm very excited to be able to offer you this treatment. Please get in touch if you'd like to make an appointment so you can feel the benefits for yourself.
1. Marmas are vital energy points and tend to be located where a number of tissue types meet - for example veins, tendons, arteries and ligaments - and are linked with emotions, thoughts and feelings. The manipulation of the Marmas is said to remove congestion and improve energy flow. The use of oil on these points:
- influences the nervous system, calming the mind and reducing stress
- increases the flow of Prana, (subtle energy flow) thereby reducing pain
- activates the digestive fire detoxing and cleansing, improving circulation, metabolism and rejuvenation of tissues
- enhances vitality, promoting general health and wellbeing
2. There are three 'doshas' or constitutions - Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Most people are a mix of two or even three, though there is usually a more dominant one. If there's an imbalance, it's usually because there's an excess of a partcular dosha and it's important to rebalance the doshas and bring them back into harmony. I can give you a short questionnaire to determine which dosha type(s) you are, along with some simple suggestions for how you can stay in balance.
3. Tridoshic oil, balances all three doshas. It's made up of organic cold pressed sesame oil, which has a very high mineral content and contains iron, phosphorus, magnesium,copper,salicylic acid, calcium and trace elements; it's also rich in linoleic acid which nourishes the skin, lecithin which is beneficial for endocrine glands, nerves and brain cells, along with eight amino acids which are important for the brain. It is mixed with herbs that balance all three doshas.
Although believed to have originated in ancient Egypt, Remedial Massage didn't become a recognised technique until the late 1940s. Since then it has become widely recognised as an effective way to help alleviate soft tissue injuries and chronic pain.
What to expect
Instead of the kind of gentle, sweeping strokes you get with - for example - Relaxation Massage Therapy - a Remedial Massage concentrates on specific problem areas and uses considerable pressure to stimulate blood circulation and release chronic tension that may be held in specific muscles. This kind of massage works along the lines of the actual muscle tissues, tendons and fascia to break up the adhesions that can occur as a result of strain or injury.
How does it help?
Remedial Massage is extremely effective in reducing pain and helping to increase the function of affected areas of the body - and is particularly good at helping with lower back pain. Remedial Massage can also lower your blood pressure and heart rate.
If you'd like to book a Remedial Massage with me, please get in touch with me for an appointment.
I offer a number of different kinds of therapeutic massage from my home in Hove - including Relaxation Massage Therapy, Deep Tissue Massage, Aromatherapy Massage, Manual Lymphatic Drainage, Myofascial Release Therapy and Trigger Point Therapy - so I thought it might be helpful if over the coming weeks if I explained a little about each technique, starting with Relaxation Massage Therapy.
Based on Western notions of anatomy and physiology, the Relaxation Massage technique was pioneered by a physiologist, Per Henrik Ling (1776-1839) who worked at the University of Stockholm. It is the oldest, most established technique in the West and is the foundation for many other massage styles.
What to expect
Fluid, sweeping strokes that encompass the entire body; gentle kneading and circular motions, together with light tapping. It's an altogether gentler massage technique than, say, Deep Tissue Massage, and works on the whole body, rather than concentrating on specific areas where you may be experiencing pain or tightness.
How does it help?
Relaxation Massage is fantastic for dealing with stress, which is known to contribute to all sorts of health problems, including asthma, anxiety, hypertension, headaches, depression and heart disease. It relaxes the tissues, improves your circulation, which in turn benefits the nervous system.
If you'd like to book an appointment for a Relaxation Massage Treatment, please get in touch with me.
22/04/16 06:26 Filed in: Advice
I sometimes see clients who think of massage as an occasional treat when they feel they deserve to be pampered or to reward themselves for completing a difficult task or getting through a tricky time in their lives. While that's fine, I firmly believe that almost everyone can benefit from regular massage. Over the years I've realised that there are many reasons why regular massage can be so beneficial and I'd like to share them with you today.
Massage reduces stress and tension by lowering cortisol levels and stimulating the production of dopamine and serotonin produced by the body. The result? You feel less anxious and can see everything much more clearly.
Massage helps to reduce the impact of long hours spent at a desk. When we sit at a computer - especially a laptop - for hours at a time our shoulders pull forward and become rounded and our back muscles (upper and lower) become overstretched which weakens them. In conjunction with regular exercise, massage can alleviate back pain and actually hlep to improve your posture.
Massage improves circulation which is especially beneficial if you're inactive due to injury or chronic pain. The action of massage flushes lactic acid from the muscles and improves the way lymph fluid circulates, carrying waste products away from internal organs. As a result, some clients discover that it lowers their blood pressure as well.
Massage can help you get a good night's sleep. Remember I said that regular massage produces serotonin? This is essential for the production of melatonin, the so-called 'sleep hormone' which is produced naturally by your brain when the sun goes down and your body begins preparations for sleep.
Regular massage can reduce the need for prescription painkillers and offers a natural, healthy alternative to a quick chemical fix.
There are many more reasons why I believe regular massage can play an important part in living a balanced, healthy life but these are some of the most important. Everyone's different however, so if you're having a problem or experiencing discomfort, get in touch for a quick, honest appraisal - I'd love to help you if I can.
19/01/16 16:16 Filed in: Advice
January is the time of year when we are most susceptible to illness - not surprising really, given that December's the season for socialising and partying, hugging and kissing everyone (even people you wouldn't normally be that close to) work colleagues, distant relatives ..... all in warm stuffy places.
Then consider how compromised your immune system is, thanks to all the late nights, the sky-high sugar and alcohol intake over the festive period, and it's really not surprising that there are so many cold and flu viruses doing the rounds.
Many people turn to a drastic detox as the answer, and although there's nothing wrong with that in principle, aggressive detoxing can lead to all sorts of problems as your body tries to deal with a sudden overwhelming build-up of the bad stuff in order to help you expel it.
Instead of putting themselves and their bodies through all that, more and more people are having massage as a preventative treatment because of its profound effect on the immune system. Massage has been shown to increase the number of lymphocytes (white blood cells) which play a crucial role in helping your body to resist disease and infection, and it also reduces the levels of cytokines, molecules which cause inflammation and which in turn can lead to cardiovascular disease and depression.
The other important thing to note here is that massage is recommended not as an occasional treat (though that's always welcome) but as something you have regularly, before you feel unwell. In other words, it's preventative, rather than curative.
Finally, it's important to use massage as part of a wider wellness regime, so also consider the following:
* Wash your hands regularly and use an antibacterial gel or hand wash; lavender or tea tree oil used on the hands can also help. Paper money can hold the 'flu virus for an astonishing 17 days
* Take vitamin C every day - at least 1000 mg with zinc to support the immune system
* Several drops of Echinacea in a glass of water sipped regularly when you've been in contact with anybody displaying symptoms can really help protect you, if you are beginning to come come down with something it can reverse or lessen your symptoms
* Try burning essential oil of lemongrass to purify the air
* Avoid sugary food and alcohol as much as possible.
* Try and eat as healthily as you can. Include smoothies made from berries, wheatgrass and coconut milk and home-made soups from fresh vegetables like beetroot and ginger and chilli.
* Open windows daily, even just for a few minutes to clear the air
* Wrap up warm and take a walk
In conjunction with regular massage, these simple steps can really make a difference to your well-being, especially at this time of the year.