What exactly is hot stone massage and what are the benefits? Although Pure Knead does not offer hot stone massage, it is a very popular and effective type of massage therapy. Below is some more information about it. Also, although our mobile massage therapists do not offer hot stone massage, they do a wide range of other types of massages.
What is Hot Stone Massage?
Introduced to North America within the decade, hot stone massage actually dates back thousands of years to ancient healing practices around the world, from China to India and even the America’s older nations. These heated stones have been used through the ages by healers to ease body discomfort and pain, balance the body energetically and, of course, in massage therapy.
Today, a hot stone massage can be combined with body energy balancing and other types of massage, like Swedish and Sports Massage. During a massage, the hot stones help to relax and warm the muscles. Hot stones applied to the body release heat that penetrates deeply into tissues and muscles, promoting deep tissue relaxation and making it easier to apply therapeutic massage manipulation. This allows your therapist to better relieve body tension, with less pain.
Hot and cold stones are particularly effective with sports injury or over-use injury. For people suffering from fibromyalgia, hot stones allow massage therapists to facilitate massage without the need for excessive pressure. Hot stone placement is also used to relieve menstrual cramps.
Essential oils are sometimes used in combination with hot stone massage. A few drops are placed in the water that the stones are heated in, which creates an aromatherapy effect. The oils can also be used in combination with the massage oil that is used to move stones over the body.
What to expect at your Hot Stone Massage
The stones most commonly used are lava stones, however, basalt is also used because of its ability to retain heat well. They are heated to about 130 degrees Fahrenheit and placed strategically along the body, like on the spine or between the toes. A massage therapist may rub the body with a hot stone in the palm of their hand, using massage oils to assist gliding of the stone over the body. The firmness of the stone, combined with the heat, provides prolonged heat therapy which improves improves circulation and detoxifies the body.