Swedish Massage is the cumulative name for the deeply relaxing and enjoyable bodywork techniques originating from 19th century Sweden. There are many variations that have been added over its evolution into modern day style, but the core strokes consist of effleurage, petrissage, and friction. It is used to relieve tension and stress, to treat headaches and muscle pain, and improves overall wellness.
Effleurage – This is usually the first technique your therapist will use. It is a soft, gliding stroke used to apply oil or cream, and warm up the muscle groups on your back, arms, and legs. Effleurage is superficial—to get a good idea of how it feels, think about when you apply lotion after a shower.
Petrissage – This is a type of kneading technique where your therapist will roll and apply soft-to-medium pressure to your muscles. Imagine kneading dough when making a loaf of bread. Petrissage is important because it improves circulation and prepares the body for deeper work. This feels especially good for warming up and helping to relax the upper shoulders and neck.
Friction – Friction is a vital component of the deep bodywork associated with Swedish massage. Your therapist will utilize fingertips to press more deeply, relaxing the underlying tissue. This stroke separates points of adhesion that occur when two overlapping muscles stick together. Adhesions are commonly referred to as 'knots'. Friction employs the most pressure used in traditional Swedish massage, and it should feel really good! This is what Rachel calls "Delicious Pain, not Scary Pain".
A Swedish Massage should leave you feeling wonderfully balanced, free of tension and deeply relaxed. Book Your Session Today at Massage Williamsburg