Ten Ways to Relax

Woman doing yoga meditation at home

Relaxation is key to reducing excess stress and its effects. Here are some ideas which may help.

1. Get an extra massage. When you relax with massage, you let go of muscle tension, worry and mental confusion. This may be one of the few times you slow down and notice what it feels like to relax. This actually helps you program yourself to tune into those feelings and encourage your body and mind to let go of stress and tension.

 

2. Practice focused relaxation. Sit comfortably or lie down with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Support your neck with a pillow if you prefer. Scan your body, noticing where you feel tension or discomfort. Breathe slowly into these areas. Imagine relaxation flooding into the areas of discomfort. Begin by practicing ten minutes once a day.

 

3. Meditate. You will probably have a better chance of sticking with a technique you learn in a class or other group, but in the meantime, try this. Silently repeat a word that has little emotional meaning for you, such as “one.” Give it your full attention. When other thoughts or images come into your mind, ignore them and return your focus to the unspoken word. Don’t strain or try too hard. Simply let your mind keep coming back to your chosen word again and again as thoughts pass through your mind.

 

4. Practice abdominal breathing. Inhale slowly through your nose. Exhale completely, squeezing the belly tight. Begin by practicing for 5 minutes at a time. Try it when you feel anxious or can’t sleep.

 

5. Soak in a hot bath. Add several drops of essential oils like lavender or ylang-ylang for relaxation. Or just soak your feet. Add Epsom salts to a bathtub or basin of warm water and enjoy!

 

6. Try biofeedback. A professional biofeedback practitioner can help you develop self-regulation over the mental and physical processes that are associated with stress-related disorders.

 

7. Take a nap, even if it’s only for ten minutes.

 

8. Take a warm shower. As the water rushes around your neck, drop your neck forward and stretch it from side to side. Then circle your shoulders slowly under the hot water.

 

9. Try auto suggestion. Frequently repeat a suggestion to yourself such as “Shoulders free” or “Neck relaxed.” Repeat the suggestion, but don’t strain or do anything at all but say the phrase. This plants an idea which may gently support muscle relaxation.

 

10. Take a yoga class. Many people find yoga increases relaxation and relieves many of the effects of stress.

 


Loosen Up Bodywork provides the highest quality service by educating our clients on how to best utilize our services and products that are available. We have multiple online resources and our phones are answered by our therapists so you can always reach a trained professional to answer your questions.

Our goal is to empower our clients to take charge of their own health and wellbeing. With our therapists vast knowledge in various natural health treatments, we can assist you in finding the best modalities to match your unique body.

Visit our services page to see how we can partner in cultivating health and wellness in to your life @ http://loosenupbodywork.com/services/massage/

Health Strategies Building Resistance to Stress

These are healthful tips for better managing your stress levels.


1. Jog, swim, or bike. Exercise increases the flow of endorphins, natural pain relievers that are responsible for what is called “the runner’s high.” In addition, exercising, if done two to three times a week, will improve your circulation and help relieve chronic tension and anxiety. You may also find you reap more enjoyment from life!

 

2. Walk. Simply walking in good shoes with flexible soles can be one of the best forms of exercise. If you can only manage a short walk in the beginning, even ten minutes, remember that any new habit begins with one small step.

 

3. Stretch frequently. Practicing stretches every hour or two, if done properly, can help relieve muscle tension and even prevent injury. Ask your massage therapist for suggestions.

 

4. Get regular exposure to outdoor light and fresh air. This can reduce the effects of seasonal affective disorder, and stress in general to lift your spirits!

 

5. Get a complete physical evaluation to rule out any conditions that may be taking their toll.

 

6. Ask your physician for recommendations for vitamins and other supplements. Some supplements seem to help increase energy levels and balance hormones and other chemicals in the body.

 

7. If you feel that stress threatens to overwhelm you, seek a professional counselor.

 

8. Drink plenty of water. Many of us don’t drink enough pure water.

 

9. Get regular massage to reinforce your ability to let go of stress.

 

10. Take a yoga or tai chi class. Ask your massage therapist for referrals for qualified instructors.

 


Loosen Up Bodywork provides the highest quality service by educating our clients on how to best utilize our services and products that are available. We have multiple online resources and our phones are answered by our therapists so you can always reach a trained professional to answer your questions.

Our goal is to empower our clients to take charge of their own health and wellbeing. With our therapists vast knowledge in various natural health treatments, we can assist you in finding the best modalities to match your unique body.

Visit our services page to see how we can partner in cultivating health and wellness in to your life @ http://loosenupbodywork.com/services/massage/

Why to Cancel When You’re Ill

If you have a fever or an infectious sickness, even a common cold, that is good reason to postpone your massage appointment.

For one thing, touch may not feel good. For another thing, you may be contagious, especially in the first stages of a cold or flu. This is usually when you are feeling the worst, when you are coughing and sneezing frequently.

The more you limit your contact with others, including your massage therapist, the less you will spread it around. For example, if you don’t “pass” a cold on to your massage therapist, he or she won’t spread it to all the other clients.

Studies show that you can transmit a cold or flu to others one or two days before your symptoms appear, and up to five days after first being exposed to the virus. According to the National Institutes of Health NIH), colds are most contagious two to four days after original exposure, when there is plenty of the virus present in nasal secretions.

There is another reason to avoid massage when you have a cold or flu.  Because one of the major impacts of massage is on the circulation (including the removal of wasteful by-products and infectious materials), it is thought that massage can actually increase the spread of infection in your body.

If you are sick, your immune system is already working hard. One of the best immune supports may truly be resting and drinking plenty of liquids.

And, remember, whenever you have any questions about the appropriateness of massage, be sure to talk with a massage therapist when you schedule the appointment. And, if you are under the care of a physician for any reason, let them know you are receiving massage therapy.

See this website for more information: www.goaskalice.columbia.edu


Loosen Up Bodywork provides the highest quality service by educating our clients on how to best utilize our services and products that are available. We have multiple online resources and our phones are answered by our therapists so you can always reach a trained professional to answer your questions.

Our goal is to empower our clients to take charge of their own health and wellbeing. With our therapists vast knowledge in various natural health treatments, we can assist you in finding the best modalities to match your unique body.

Visit our services page to see how we can partner in cultivating health and wellness in to your life @ http://loosenupbodywork.com/services/massage/

In The Hours After Your Massage

After your massage you may notice profound changes in your body and mind. Here are some things that have helped many people get the most from their massage.

1. Drink extra water. During a massage circulation is improved, which helps flush irritating waste products from stressed muscles and other tissues. Drinking water aids the functioning of the whole body including the circulation and the kidneys, which are both involved with relieving the body of waste products. Drinking extra water also seems to help reduce soreness and fatigue after a massage.

2. Schedule time to take it easy after your massage. Rest if you feel the need. If you can, take a nap or get in bed early. If you haven’t been sleeping well, receiving massage may relax you enough that you will want to turn in and catch up.

3. If the focus of your massage is on a particular injury or body part, remember to stretch, ice, or apply heat to that area with the advice of your massage therapist. Or, you may want to do some gentle movement, such as walking, sometime in the hours after your massage to mildly encourage your muscles to work in a balanced and efficient way.

4. People sometimes experience some soreness for 24 hours or so after a massage. If you do feel sore or think that you might, stretch gently in a hot shower or take a warm bath with Epsom salts. And remember to tell your massage therapist about your experience so it can be taken into consideration in your next session.


Gina Tibbs, HHP, Instructor / Therapist, has been practicing massage therapy since 1999. She uses her knowledge and experience in multiple massage modalities to create a detailed and unique plan to meet your precise needs. Her passion to teach, always learn more and to empower her clients and students with new and old techniques for healing grows every day.

What should I expect from a massage?

Often clients come in for massage therapy seeking relief from pain, increased range of motion, or  a preventative measure for any combination of these two things.  As we know the list of health benefits from getting regular massage therapy is long.  So what exactly can clients expect from each massage session?

First, let’s explore what not to expect.  This question can be answered by looking at our scope of practice as massage therapists.  While massage therapy does have many health benefits and we are considered health professionals, we are not physical therapists or doctors.  We are not trained to diagnose or treat any physical conditions.  We can aid in recovery once a diagnosis has been made.  So if you’re experiencing pain or limited range of motion that’s more severe than what you may experience after a slight change in activity level then you should see your doctor as soon as possible.  A diagnosis will help your massage therapist know exactly how to proceed with your massage session to maximize the health benefits you will experience.  If you can not make it in to see your doctor before your massage, be sure to inform your therapist of exactly what you are experiencing.  You may want to call ahead of time to be sure that you are still able to continue with the session.

Now here’s what you can expect.  This has to do with the individual therapists area of expertise.  Every therapist is trained in multiple modalities and usually  has one or two favorites that they take their continuing education in and practice the most.  Be sure to ask your therapist what techniques they specialize in and ask them to educate you on what you can expect from that sort of treatment.  For example, traditional western massage therapy is contraindicated for migraine headaches but eastern techniques like shiatsu or acupressure can provide relief. If you already have a favorite therapist, ask them what techniques they use when you go in for your next session.  That way if your therapist is ever unavailable you can make sure you are scheduled with someone that has similar training.

The bottom line is that massage therapy is just a part of the picture when it comes to our health.  Most ailments that can be helped with massage therapy start in our daily lives.  So ask your massage therapist how you may adjust activities that aggravate your body and the benefits you experience after your massage can last you a life time.

Yours in health,  Gina Tibbs