Sunday, 3 October 2010
Home shoulder, neck and back massage
A short yet effective de-stress massage. If you are feeling tense the sense of touch alone is a very active relaxant. Take the time to try this instead of a glass of wine every other day when getting in from work.
All you need is yourself, a chair, a friend and five minutes to spare.
Sit, fully clothed, but not over-dressed, upright in a comfortable, preferably straight-backed chair with your feet firmly placed on the floor. For extra comfort you may want to place a small cushion in the small of your back to support your lumbar spine.
Deep breathing increases the levels of oxygen throughout the body, nourishing exhausted muscles, releasing tension and promoting a sense of mental calmness.
To help yourself relax even better try focussing on your hands as you breathe: soften your hands and fingers. when we are tense or stressed, it often ends up in our hands.
Rub your hands together for 10 seconds to warm them up, then gently place them on the recipients shoulders for 10 seconds to introduce your reassuring touch.
Begin gently ‘squeezing’ the muscle bulk either side, along the top of the shoulders for 30 seconds to get the circulation into these large important muscles.
In a comfortable position, gently and positively rest your forearms on the mid-point of the top of the shoulders. Gently apply more pressure, encouraging the receiver to breathe and not to resist the pressure. Continue applying these pressure moves rhythmically along the top of the shoulders right up to the neck and back again.
Now massage the back with circular movements as far down as you can.
Ask the recipient to rest their forehead either in your hand or against your arm as you stand to the side of them. With your other hand across the back and at the base of the neck begin gently squeezing the muscles either side of the neck right up to the base of the skull. This area can be extremely sensitive, so avoid using direct pressure here.
Place your forearms back on the shoulders for 20 seconds, gently increasing pressure.
Finally place your hands on the shoulders firmly for 20 seconds asking the recipient to take three deep and slow breaths.
Posted by Ian Brealey at 13:17