Gay Wellness
Posted 10/16/2020 in Massage

So many styles of massage: Which one is right for you?


So many styles of massage:  Which one is right for you?

You know you may need healing touch and even crave it, but where do you begin?  And how do you select the style of massage that’s right for you?


Let’s face it - when it comes to massage, there are so many different styles and approaches that one can be easily confused.


We’d like to clear things up a bit, so that when you are browsing through gay massage therapists, you’ll have a sense of what they offer.


Let's dive into several key massage styles and their benefits: 


SWEDISH

Your body is grumpy, overworked, stressed, maybe tired from lack of sleep, or... maybe you haven't received touch in a long time.  


You deserve that massage! 


Let's talk about Swedish. A Swedish massage is probably the most "make my body feel good now!" type of massage you can find.


The session typically starts with long, soft, delicious strokes with a flat hand. After the tissue loosens up, it is followed by a "kneading" movement of the hands, gripping the muscle tissue and squeezing it.
 

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You will typically start by lying on your stomach, and the masseur will start their magic on your back, and proceed to cover the whole body.


The benefits are profound. This type of massage helps to increase blood flow, drain the lymph glands, increase the level of oxygen in the blood, and relax your nervous system. 



Bottom line:  if you're just looking to relax, and enjoy the pleasure of being touched, you can't go wrong with a Swedish massage.


DEEP TISSUE

Now let's go a bit "deeper" into massage. 


Let's say you're someone who sits a lot. Or you bend over a lot. 


Whatever the reason, things are hurting, and it's just not a pleasant situation. Whether it's a stiff neck, low back pain, tight hamstrings, or sore shoulders, the research is in:  most of us have at some point felt some kind of chronic muscle pain.


Ok, what you're looking for is a Deep Tissue massage. You have problems in your body - literally, KNOTS.  


Massage time!


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A Deep Tissue massage uses... wait for it... firm, deep pressure to release those sickening knots. We are talking about knuckles, elbows, forearms burrowing into your body. Strength. No-nonsense.


And there will probably be some pain involved here (if you're into that sort of thing). The masseur's job is to track your experience and adjust the pressure to achive a pleasant release of that tension. They is breaking up actual knots in your tissue. 


Some pain is natural and accompanies the softening, lengthening and realigning of muscle and connective tissue that unfolds during your session. 


And when you get off that table it will feel SO GOOD!



A "sports massage" is very similar to Deep Tissue, and is usually appropriate for athletes who need a "body tune-up." Sports massage addresses the specific issues that arise from repeated stress on specific areas of the body. It employs faster strokes, and also includes stretching, and techniques found in Swedish Massage.


THAI MASSAGE

Thai massage is one of the oldest forms of the healing art of massage. It is quite different than the other styles of massage. You stay clothed and all the work is done on a floor mat (or just the floor). 


The masseur uses their whole body weight via hands, feet, elbows, etc. as they move your body into different positions. One gay masseur once described it to me as "having yoga done to you." 


You're basically a rag doll in loose comfortable clothing as the therapist guides you through a series of stretches. It's a refreshing, grounding experience.



(It is always advisable to discuss your needs before you start your session. This is especially important with Thai massage before the masseur walks on you. before the masseur walks on you - if you aren't a limber person to begin with, you may be uncomfortable or risk injury from this modality).


More on Eastern Techniques


Massage therapy began in the ancient East, thousands of years ago. We won't give you the full history lesson, but you must know:  there are a lot of techniques.


Many are based in Traditional Chinese Medicine, which understands that the body has a flow of energy called "qi" (same as "prana" or "life force").


When it gets imbalanced, you feel lousy. Out of whack.



So here they are:  


Acupressure, Shiatsu, and Reflexology focus on stimulating small energy points on the body with finger pressure. These points correspond to the energy meridians,  that  regulate specific organ systems and   support  overall well-being and health when in proper balance.


It's all about softening, thumb and finger pressure holds and range of motion. Trust us, your body will thank you. Stress be gone!


Ayurvedic massage comes from India, which has its own in-depth system of understanding the flow of energy and removing blockages through focused touch. From the choice of oils (and they use bucketloads of it), to the types of strokes, an Ayurvedic massage will replenish not only mind and body, but your spirit too.


OTHER TYPES OF MASSAGE

There are many other types of styles of massage that can be incorporated in your session, such as Hot Stone Therapy, in which smooth, flat heated stones are placed on your body;

Aromatherapy, which uses essential oils for emotional wellbeing;

Reiki, an energy healing technique for stress reduction and deep relaxation;

and, of course, some others that we'll leave for another day.
IN SUMMARY


Just like being Costco, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by all the options.

As you develop your self-care regimen, it will be good to branch out and try new things. When it comes to massage, it's certainly about the pleasure, but it's also the investment you're making in your body.

You are worth that investment.

And lastly, please remember that no two bodies are the same, and some folks love light pressure, other prefer it deep. As there are so many styles and so many masseurs (make sure he's legit!) to choose from, allow yourself to experiment and find the one that suits you best!

Visit our
Los Angeles city page to browse for masseurs, as well as the other cities we service.

Quiz:  What do you need when you're tired, fatigued? Or life gets tough?


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