Follow up sessions are important because the long term benefits of massage therapy are cumulative. Directly after receiving a massage, almost everyone experiences the immediate results of relaxation, increased flexibility, mobility, and reduced tension and pain. However, the ultimate objective of massage therapy is to re-educate the neuro-muscular system to relax and contract when it’s supposed to. This only happens over time.
When a muscle has been traumatized by injury or repetitive activity (typing or holding the phone receiver to your ear with your shoulder), the muscle shortens and can begin to spasm causing pain. The putty like substance (connective tissue) that surrounds the muscle also shortens and hardens which restricts the expansion of the muscle. Resultantly, scar tissue can form causing adhesions in the muscle. These adhesions limit the range of motion and flexibility in the joint, and reduce the circulation of blood and lymphatic fluid, the foundation of the immune system.
After these adhesions form, a new shortened tension pattern is set by a nerve mechanism in the muscle. A specialized massage technique can be employed to break down the scar tissue, giving the muscle an opportunity to reset and lengthen to its natural position. This creates the feeling of being loose and limber. It can also feel strange because our body is not use to this new level of expansion. Resultantly, our mind then tries to make out body go back to what was familiar. Unless we stop this impulse by consciously choosing to relax and let go, our muscles will return to its original contracted state. Massage therapy helps us to re-train the impulse to contract our muscles by reminding the nerve mechanism in the muscle that it is OK to let go.
If you have chronic pain or tension, poor posture, recurring headaches, or a variety of physical problems that crop up one after another, then receiving massage therapy on a regular basis would be of great help in altering these conditions. Make your next massage therapy appointment today and enjoy improved health and wellness.