While traditional massage is home to plenty of different techniques for various tissue, muscle and blood benefits, spas are always on the search for new features and additional benefits to add to the average massage. A result is a number of interesting extras seeing a lot of growth in the spa world. Some are just for fun, and some can have real benefits. So the next time you are ready for a spa visit or massage, consider these bonuses:
A sugar scrub is a special type of message that, instead of traditional oils, uses a scrub made from sugar grains. The goal here is to not only relax the muscles but also provide a cleansing wash for the skin that wipes away dead skin cells and gives skin a smoother feel. Salt scrubs are used for the same thing, but sometimes people’s skin can react less pleasantly with salt, so sugar is becoming a common substitute. Rice bran and coffee grounds are other, more unusual alternatives, but they all share the same purpose.
Yes, massages tend to include oil as a matter of course. But lately, spas are trying to pick out oils that have additional benefits, especially for your skin. One example is coconut oil, which is used in an effort to rejuvenate skin and give it a more youthful appearance. Ask your therapist or spa about other oils and what their medicinal effects might be.
Aromatherapy is one of the most common massage extras, adding specific and relaxing scents to the air that make the massage even more effective. There’s not much more to be said here – it makes an excellent addition to any massage.
Hot stone therapy uses – you guessed it – heated stones that are placed in specific spots on the back and neck. The stones are often made from basalt or other comfortable mineral combinations, and the heating process is strictly controlled so you are not in danger of burns or serious discomfort. Sometimes the stones are simply left in place so that you can absorb the heat slowly and let your muscles relax. At other times a therapist will use additional rocks to massage you and work out the tension.
Chilled stone massage is also exactly what it sounds like. These colder stones are made from minerals that hold cold easily, like marble. When chilled, often in ice water, they are placed on the muscles of the back and neck. Sometimes a massage is also included. Like jumping into an ice bath or taking a cold shower, the goal here is to create tension and then encourage muscles to relax and release toxins as they recover. The result can be promising if you don’t mind the sensation.
Acupressure is more of a technique than a new addition to the massage experience but it deserves a mention because of its rise in popularity. The goal is to activate acupoints on the body without using acupuncture needles, replacing them with more traditional, targeted massage techniques.
Tiffany is a Medical Student and also works as a fitness coach in part-time. She is also a writer and writes on health and fitness articles. Tiffany loves to engage with users and help them provide various useful information on General Health. She provides researched-based information and also featured on various blogs and magazines.