What is your favorite muscle to massage and why?

I took a little survey of our massage therapists to find out what muscle or muscle group they love working on and why.  The answers may surprise you!

Teresa Sage: Neck/cranial base release because it is such a nurturing area and because the tension ebbs and flows from the neck to the upper shoulders, almost always laden and heavy with tension on most people, especially females in my experience.

Teresa Sage demonstrates Craniosacral Massage techniques

Teresa Sage demonstrates Craniosacral Massage techniques

Allison Peterson: Erectors because of how they run the entire length of the spine and when they relax, we notice that surrounding larger muscle groups will open up with more ease.

Tiffany Jackson: The neck muscles because I think that is when people relax the most.

Jamee Koopman: The Psoas!  For more information about psoas massage, click here.

Many muscles in the abdominal area contribute to pain and tension, including the psoas and diaphragm.

Many muscles in the abdominal area contribute to pain and tension, including the psoas and diaphragm.

Clair McClintock: The Diaphragm!  It is often a place that gets left out of treatment for many different ailments.  For example: radiating pain across the ribs, breathing issues, trauma from an accident, and more.  It is not the most relaxing massage but I’ve had so much instant improvement in people’s back pain or some people that have come in with pain they’ve been dealing with for years.  It can be a huge emotional release spot for people.

Cassie Sampson: The Piriformis.  People who have severe pain from sciatic nerve issues can often find relief with massage to the piriformis and surrounding glut and hip muscles.  It wasn’t until I had injured myself and experienced the horrible pain caused by a sciatic nerve issues that I knew just how limiting and painful sciatic nerve issues could be and I liked knowing ways to help.

The piriformis and gluteal muscles can be accessed directly on the skin with proper draping, through sheets or clothing. Gluteal and piriformis massage is extremely beneficial.

The piriformis and gluteal muscles can be treated directly on the skin with proper draping, through sheets or clothing or via stretching. Gluteal and piriformis massage is extremely beneficial.

Justin Behanish: The quadratus lumborum (QL) muscle because it it is the cause (or partial cause) of pain in at least 1/4 of the people who have back-pain.  I think it is too often neglected by massage therapists.

The QL is a small muscle in the lower back that is the root of many peoples' back pain.

The QL is a small muscle in the lower back that is the root of many peoples’ back pain.

Kristiana Moore: The muscles in the feet because many of us stand all day and people find it the most relaxing.  When I get to the foot massage at the end of the session, so many people tend to fall asleep!

If any of our therapist’s responses are tempting you to book a massage to relax your sorest muscles, click here to schedule online!

The benefits of quiet during a spa service

Many of our guests for massage and facial services at the spa prefer to completely zone out and enjoy much needed quiet time, without the harassing buzz of e-mail alerts or demands of family or co-workers.

Sometimes guests ask if it is rude if they relax quietly and the answer is a big, resounding NO!  If quietly venting about your stress to your therapist helps you to relax, then by all means, feel free, but don’t feel like we expect you to talk or you have to engage your massage therapist or esthetician in conversation.

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The truth is, your service will usually be much more beneficial with longer lasting results if you do take some time to quiet your mind. Your therapist can focus more on what he or she is doing and can really concentrate and “listen” to your tissue and feel for subtle changes in the muscles.  If you zone out our doze off, your muscles tend to relax a bit more to allow for deeper work because your mind isn’t telling your muscles to tighten up or hold tension patterns.

If quieting the mind doesn’t come easily for you or if you find yourself needing to squeeze in a short massage between meetings, we’d like to offer a few ideas to help get into the right frame of mind to relax during your spa services.

1. If at all possible, arrive 5-10 minutes early so you can read a magazine, sip some tea or water, and feel like you’ve had a minute to transition to a spa frame of mind.

2. Leave your phone in the car or at home.  Just knowing it is nearby can be enough to keep someone out of the zone and an unexpected beep or buzz can startle you back to reality.

3. When your therapist leaves you to disrobe and climb under the sheets, take a moment to enjoy the peaceful feeling of being alone and take some slow, deep breaths as you set an intention for your service and repeat it to yourself.  Ideas include “I will let my mind rest,” or “I will let my tension go.”

4.  During your massage, continue taking slow deep breaths and focus on the way your body feels and responds during the service.

A great resource on the benefits of a quiet treatment is the article The Healing Effects of Massage Mind.  Click here to read the article.  Click here to book your next spa service and mental vacation.

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