Massage

Magnesium, Your Ally Against a Sore Back

Magnesium for back painLet’s say that you’re at work and, suddenly, you begin to feel a pain caused by having sore muscles. At least one of your colleagues will suggest some magnesium supplements, in order to avoid such problems in the future. And you know what? This is actually one great solution!

Magnesium supplements, a must for an active life

Technically speaking, the flow of magnesium and calcium through the muscle cells is the one that controls contraction and relaxation, so taking supplements makes total sense. Besides this, magnesium, along with minerals like sodium, potassium, and calcium, are lost through sweat, so a few magnesium supplements, after a workout, is very popular among athletes.

But back to the initial question: can magnesium fix your sore back issues? Currently, there are no studies proving this, but this doesn’t mean that this solution should be ignored.

“Scientists are now saying that cramping is related to neuromuscular fatigue in the exercising muscles so it’s not necessarily the low levels of a particular electrolyte that is directly leading to the cramp,” says Katherine Shone, spokesperson for Sports Dietitians Australia.

Is it that good for your body?

Nevertheless, let’s take a few moments and see exactly how magnesium works and what is good for…

Every organ in your body – especially the heart, muscles, and kidneys, operate properly in the presence of magnesium, an essential mineral which also keeps our bones and teeth strong, but also assists with energy production. Therefore, it’s pretty obvious that an eventual lack of magnesium can have an impact on the well-being of your muscles, including the ones supporting your back.

In order to get a sufficient magnesium intake, it’s highly recommended to consume fibre-rich foods. For example, one cup of kidney beans, black beans or lentils should provide around 25 per cent of the daily requirements, while an additional cup of rice is another 25 per cent.

Overall, anybody who follows a healthy diet, including fruit, vegetables and nuts will surely have enough magnesium in their diet and manage to avoid suffering from a sore back.

How bad is a lack of magnesium?

There are situations in which people with chronic health conditions have a magnesium deficiency, meaning that back pain is something common for them. However, supplementation does the job and the pain is not that strong. Generally speaking, serious magnesium deficiencies are very rare, but, on the other side, borderline magnesium deficiencies are common.

To wrap it up, if muscle cramping is your main issue and it’s affecting your back seriously, simply focus on fueling before a workout, then recover with protein, fruits and veggies. Or you can also opt for a professional massage service, like the one offered by Maria.

Besides relieving from tension and stress and helping dissolving pain and discomfort, her services can help you improve your muscle tone and flexibility so that sore back that kept making your life hard.

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Ever Wondered How Often it’s Recommended to Get a Massage

How Often it's Recommended to Get a MassageConsidering how often people complain about having a life filled with stress and body fatigue, there’s no surprise that massage saloons have more clients than ever. And these are just two of the main reasons why people are relying on such services to feel better.

If you’re a fan of massage yourself, however, you should be aware of a few aspects before deciding to put massage therapy into your regular wellness program. The frequency of your massage therapy completely depends on both your physical and emotional needs, but also your stress levels.

Is getting a massage way too often bad?

The idea is that getting a massage regularly – a few times a week, that is – will allow you to experience several health benefits. Still, this may not be right for each individual!
For example, if you have some injuries causing you pain or other back pains, you definitely need to consult a physician and see what it’s recommended in your case. Also, if you’re hoping to get rid of any type of pain after one massage session, we have some bad news for you: just like going to the gym for one month isn’t going to get you that summer body you always wanted, getting a massage one-time won’t fix an aching body.

If you’re hoping to get rid of muscle tension caused by poor posture, lack of exercise or stretching, or daily stress-buildup, regular visits with a massage therapist should become part of your routine.

What should I start with?

Ok, so it’s all set: you’ve made an appointment and are ready to experience your first massage session. The first thing you should do is to actually talk to your therapist. A great therapist should be a partner whom you trust and handle your body to, in order to ‘fix’ some of its problems.

Take a few moments and discuss your goals, fitness routine, your physical background – make sure you mention any injuries you experienced in the past – and anything else which could affect the way your sessions go. By being open and honest with your therapist you will help them determine how often you should meet.

Is there an exact number of recommended massage sessions per week?

Generally speaking, it’s recommended to schedule massage therapy more often during periods when your stress levels increase or when you have to deal with stress and pain associated with physical and mental conditions. Also, if you know that you have an important event coming up, which can have a negative impact on your stress levels, it’s also highly recommended to schedule a few extra massage sessions.

If you’re searching for an experienced therapist who can help you with this, Maria’s professional massage is one of the top services you can choose. With a diverse background and professional demeanor, she has a proven track record with a wide client base, located in Clearwater, Palm Harbor, Safety Harbor Florida and Tampa Bay Area.

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The Unknown Benefits of Walking Barefoot

Benefits of Walking BarefootYou’ve probably seen a lot of people walking barefoot on the street and wondered what is the actual reason why they’re doing this. Surprisingly or not, they’re part of a bigger community, all of them doing this for its benefits on their health!

Called “earthing” or “grounding”, walking barefoot has numerous benefits, but they are often overlooked by mainstream society, who actually promotes the importance of wearing shoes all the time.

Dr. Mercola claims that walking with nothing on your feet and touching directly the soil allows your body to absorb a number of negative electrons through the Earth. This plays an important role in stabilizing daily cortisol rhythm, but also creates a balanced internal bioelectrical environment.

Barefoot walking fans also say that this is a simple effort, which has way more benefits than one could actually think. Let’s go through a few of the most important and then decide if there’s actually worth it giving up shoes, at least from time to time.

It reduces pain and inflammation

According to a study, in which participants slept on a conductive mattress pad that reproduced the effects of sleeping directly on the ground for eight weeks, walking with no shoes can get you reduce cortisone levels. This automatically means less pain, stress and sleep troubles, as the participants declared.

It helps you sleep better

A different study revealed that earthing can induce relaxation, by influencing physiologic processes. People who tried this…procedure had a better night’s sleep, when compared with those who don’t walk barefoot at all. This happens because it stabilizes circadian rhythms.

It reduces the risk of heart diseases

Probably one of the most important benefits of walking barefoot on your health is the fact that it can increase the surface charge of red blood cells. This results in a reduction of clumping, therefore decreasing blood thickness. High viscosity has been directly linked to heart diseases, as one of the major issues causing them.

It boosts your energy levels

This is by far the most obvious benefit, but it still had to be mentioned here. It is believed that each time you immerse in the natural work, you somehow pick up on the higher frequencies emitted from nature. This allows you to increase your energy levels and forget about the exposure to modern society, which affects your vitality.

It makes menstrual cramps easier to support

One of the most surprising advantages of walking barefoot is its ability to ease menstrual cramps. Basically, all the pain we feel in our body starts in the mind and manifests as stress. This can have a big impact on menstrual cramps. Try going outdoors and let your bare feet touch the ground for a while, then see what this can do.

It helps loosen tense muscles

Yes, another study! It appears that earthing can prevent muscle soreness from occurring, especially after engaging in physical exercises. Obviously, it can be applied in various situations that cause tense muscles, especially very common ones, like working at a desk all day. Besides loosening tense muscles, it can also help you get rid of migraines, caused by exposure to radiation.

Speaking of tense muscles, another great way of getting rid of this problem is getting a massage. Combining the knowledge of professional massage training with the customs and practices of Asian heritage, Maria is always happy to offer a unique massage experience.
Available for clients in Clearwater, Palm Harbor, Safety Harbor Florida and Tampa Bay Area, she is always ready to help you get on the path to obtaining a healthier mind and body.

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How Can Massage Therapy Calm Your Mind and Improve Your Mood

Powerful Effects Of Massage Therapy On The Nervous System Your Mood And Improve Your MoodA massage session can have way more benefits than relieving back pain after a hard day at work! However, nowadays, things have been taken to a whole new level, as more and more people are trying massage therapy, a concept with some exceptional benefits. Let’s find out exactly how it works and why it’s actually so good for you!

What is massage therapy?

During a therapy session, a specialist manipulates your muscles, as well as other soft tissues, in order to enhance their function, but also induces relaxation. It’s not a new practice, though, as it has been used in China for more than 3,000 years, a lot of people revealing that it even help them get rid of depression, in a certain extent.

The truth is that a great massage has beneficial effects on our bodies, releasing hormones which create a sense of an emotional connection, thus calming your mind and improve your mood significantly.

How can massage therapy help relieve depression?

Let’s put things straight: if you’re suffering from depression, massage therapy probably won’t help you get rid of it completely. However, it can have a major impact on helping you relieve some of the physical symptoms associated with it.

To be more specific, we’re referring to sluggishness, back pain, joint pain, as well as muscle aches. Besides this, it’s also great against fatigue and other sleep problems.
What does massage therapy involve?

Now that we are aware of its benefits, let’s take some time and see what massage therapy actually involves. After all, it’s far from being just your average back rub.

During the therapy, your therapist will perform various moves, like rubbing, stretching, and applying pressure to the muscles in your body. However, there are various styles of massage, some of them including over-the-clothes touching, while others involve direct contact with the skin. Usually, the latter is made using scented oils, acupuncture needles, warm stones, or even some complex twisting poses.

Currently, these are the styles which can be encountered the most across the United States:

Swedish massage: By far the most common form. The therapist applies smooth and circular actions to your muscles, helping them relax.

Chair massage: Unlike most styles, this one doesn’t require sitting on a massage bed, but on a special chair, then leaning forward into a headrest. It consists of short sessions and you don’t need to remove any clothing.

Deep tissue massage: Preferred among athletes and not only, this type of massage therapy focuses on the muscles that are the closest to your bones, but their connective tissues as well.

Shiatsu: Expect some firm pressure during a therapy session including this massage, as it’s very similar to acupuncture. Compared to other types of massage though, Shiatsu massage implies more pressure, but it doesn’t produce any stiffness shortly after.

Reflexology: The therapist applies pressure to specific areas of your body, believed to correspond with the most important systems and organs in your body.

Aromatherapy: The main ‘attraction’ of this type of massage therapy is that it also implies scented oils, these being great for reducing stress and boosting your energy.

Hot stone massage: Your therapist places warm flat stones on your body, in an attempt to relax your muscles and relieve tension.

Benefits of massage therapy

Obviously, if performed by a professional, massage therapy is safe and provides immediate gratification, helping you feel relaxed and calm. As for its ability to combat depression, combined with a more conventional treatment, like medication or psychotherapy, it can deliver some great results.

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Want To Improve Your Running? This Is How Massage Can Help You!

Want To Improve Your RunningA top runner is never alone, as he or she is constantly surrounded by an entire team who makes sure that everything is going well. And you know who plays one of the most important roles? The professional massage therapist.

Runners say that massages help them to get through muscle tension with ease, but also improves their range of motion and make them feel relaxed after putting a lot of effort into a training session.

Overall, everything sounds great, but is there any scientific evidence supporting the idea that sport massage can improve performances?  According to practitioners, these moves relieve muscle soreness, promote circulation, flush toxins and lactic acid from the body, but also ease joint strain. And these claims are actually supported by evidence from several countries. But unfortunately, nothing had been confirmed by science until just recently.
Therapists reveal that sport massage can’t actually push toxins out of the muscles and into the bloodstream. Science also says that there’s no actual physiological way for this to happen. Also, it can’t flush lactic acid from muscles either. Basically, the pain after an intensive training session remains there, no matter how much massage you’re getting.
On the other side, sport massage applies a moving pressure to muscle, as well as other tissues, like ligaments, tendons, and fascia. Simply put, the energy applied to the body softens fascia tissue and helps muscles relax It also removes adhesions between fascia and muscles, which is great, especially for those who are new to running. Since they put a lot of pressure on limber joints and muscles, this surely comes in handy.

But to answer our initial question, if massage can actually help you improve your running, let’s talk about another science-backed fact. A series of studies discovered that massage after exercise – running, in our case – can reduce the intensity of delayed onset muscle soreness. Or, if you prefer, that peg-legged feeling you get a few days after running for a long distance.

Moving on, another research found less inflammation in massaged limbs, while the recovery in muscle function was up to 60 percent faster. Considering all these, we can say that the answer is ‘yes’. All runners, including beginners, can benefit from sport massage. Getting rid of that soreness that comes immediately after starting a new sport makes people likely to stick with it for a long period.

The good part is that you don’t need a specialized person for this, as you can opt for special foam rollers, allowing you to massage yourself with ease. On the other side, if you prefer specialized massage sessions, Maria’s Professional Massage can offer you the services you need.

Combining the knowledge of professional massage training with customs and practices of her Asian heritage, Maria can help you recover from an intense workout. Schedule an appointment today and get rid of that soreness in your muscles instantly!

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Top 8 Benefits Of Deep Tissue Massage

Benefits Of Deep Tissue MassageA good massage therapy can always perform a miracle on your body. Reduced pain, stress relief or a general feeling of happiness are just a few benefits of a deep tissue massage. For you to know more and be informed, we’ve prepared a list of advantages this treatment can have for you and your body.

1. Helps in lowering high blood pressure

A deep tissue massage is ideal for people who have to deal with high blood pressure. 45-60 minutes of such threat and you’ve got yourself a viable solution to treat hypertension.

2. Prevents scar tissue

It’s always hard to recover after an accident, both physically and mentally. And the fact that a scar tissue may develop, causing stiffness and uneasiness followed by pain doesn’t help you get back on track. Fortunately, we know a type of massage which can speed up the recovery by reducing inflammation in the affected area.

3. Reduces arthritis symptoms

Arthritis is something that eats you piece by piece, causing chronic joint pains and stiffness. To remove the pain, a firm massage is highly recommended.

4. Treats back pain

In the modern era, where people often spend up to 10 hours sitting at a desk, back pain has become something very common. But with deep tissue massage significantly reducing chronic lower back pain, there’s always a solution. A pleasant one, we would add.

5. Handles labor pain

We don’t need to tell how much pain pregnant women experience, especially if you are or have been in this category. Depression, anxiety, and leg, back pain, you name it. But a deep tissue massage comes like Tom Brady to save the day. Just like the superstar, it can’t always perform a miracle, yet it has enough super powers to make things better.

6. Diminishes fibromyalgia symptoms

Fibromyalgia syndrome is a common disorder that feels like a widespread pain. On short-term, deep tissue massages can ease the pain, but if the symptoms are getting worse, you should consult a specialist.

7. Aids recovery in athletes

Deep tissue massages can do wonders for the body, such as increased blood flow, reduced muscle tension, and an increased sense of well-being. Therefore, it becomes a veritable Fountain of Youth for athletes, with positive effects on recovery and on the severity of muscle soreness.

8. Reduces stress

Starting with our job, friends or even family, everyone and everything can become a stress factor. A deep tissue massage can represent the perfect solution for you to increase the production of a hormone called oxytocin. Why? Because it creates positive emotions, and your social interactions will change for the better.

Our lives have become more stressful and it’s essential for our well-being to find solutions to relieve the pressure that comes with such feelings. Combining professional massage training with Asian heritage, Maria can provide a unique massage experience, one that can help you obtain a healthier body and a fresh mind. Regular massage therapy sessions with her can even change your life in a lot of good ways!

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Cupping Your Cold Away

Cupping back of the Neck for a cold virusMany people are unfamiliar with the concept behind a cupping massage today. However, this concept has been around for quite some time. It’s an ancient Chinese way of detoxifying your body, which is why it’s great for anyone who’s suffering from a cold or otherwise has aches and pains in their body. Once you’ve received this non-invasive, truly relaxing massage you’ll actually feel more energized. Oftentimes it’s done right alongside of acupuncture so your body is fully restored to wellness. This is why practitioners really recommend it when you have a cold.

How a Cupping Massage Works

During this massage modality, a practitioner uses several glass or rubber cups. They suction seal these cups in place on your skin. This causes such a strong vacuum that your blood is forced to flow strongly in these affected areas where the cups were applied. At the same time, the cups force your tissue to release any toxins it has. These flow up and out of your body where they’re disposed of in a similar fashion as how acupuncture works. In fact, there’s an old Chinese saying that supports the use of traditional Chinese medicine, “Acupuncture and cupping, more than half of the ills cured,”

Scientific research backs this massage modality, linking it back to the ancient Chinese practice of Chi (energy). The idea here is that your body has thousands of small energy flows. These enrich our lives and keep us healthy. However, when they’re interrupted, we get sick.

The Chinese believe that with cupping you can get the blood flowing and the energy moving again. When this happens your body can start healing its wounds, reducing its infections, and detoxing its tissue. In comparison to many of the detox diets and herbal pill remedies in existence today, cupping is much safer. This is because these diets typically force you to starve yourself to remove the toxins from your body. With this in mind, you can also understand why a cupping massage is also much more relaxing.

Using Cupping Massage for Colds

When your blood flow is strong and you have good energy flowing through your body, it’s easier for your body to respond to invasive bacteria and viruses, such as the common cold. Cupping promotes this type of well-being in your body by removing any toxins in your body. Typically, these toxins would keep your immune system so busy that it couldn’t fight off any foreign invaders. Once they’re removed from your body you start feeling better. You’re also able to ward off any colds.

If you already have a cold when you go for a cupping massage, a strengthened immune system will help shorten the length of your cold. It will also help break up any mucus so it’s easier for you to dislodge. Overall, you’ll feel more comfortable.

Getting Your Massage

This really is a pain-free massage modality. While some people say they felt like a bug bit them sometimes, this isn’t unbearable but it may take you some time to get used to it. After your first few massages you’ll also have some round bruises on your body. However, as your body has less toxins in it, you’ll have less bruises – eventually you’ll have none at all.

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Benefits of Couples Massaging Each Other

Benefits of Couples Massaging Each OtherThere is a large body of articles and various forms of evidence which support the mental and physical benefits of getting massages. The vast majority of these focus on the benefits of receiving a massage, however, a new study suggests that for couples, massaging your partner can have a positive effect for the massager as well as the partner getting the massage. The study from Northumbria University in the UK studied couples over three weeks and found that both giving and receiving them led to reduced stress and increased feelings of wellbeing for both partners.

The popularity of massages continues to grow worldwide with almost one in five getting massages in 2016 in the United States. Of these, about half said it helped alleviate some sort of pain and improved wellness or helped with other issues. About a quarter said it reduced stress too. The majority of these respondents likely got their massages from professionals because that is the typical thing to do with almost 62% of massages getting done at spas, massage parlors, or a physical therapist’s office. This new finding offers perhaps a better way to get massages if both partners are willing. It can be financially beneficial compared to getting them from others and it may also improve intimacy. Learning to properly massage may be a good investment for couples interested in this sort of thing.

Further research should be conducted to verify the findings of this study, which looked at 38 people in 19 couples over 3 weeks. It will be interesting to see if this also extends to non-couples, or whether it is something about the relationship that might be driving the mutual benefits. This is plausible given that couples typically want their partner to be happy and feel good, so seeing them that way may, in turn, help them feel better and happier as well.

This study is the latest in a wide body of new studies which have looked at massages and their impacts in various scenarios from a scientific standpoint. Other studies have looked at things like recovering from athletic events, improvements in mental function, changes in blood flow, and injury recovery time after massages. Larger randomized controlled trials should be conducted in order to verify these results before prescribing them widely in medical practice, but the safety profile is good enough for most people that they can likely get massages (or now give them) and see if they notice a benefit in themselves. It is always optimal to talk to your doctor or physical therapist if you want to see whether massages can have a clinical impact on you if this is possible (although you probably do not need to schedule a special meeting for that unless you have some other condition that makes that a good idea). Massages are growing in popularity for a reason and the trend is likely to continue as research such as this one support the use and as a culture in general starts to better value wellbeing, relaxation, and meditation.

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New to Running: Is a Massage Right for You?

New to Running: Is a Massage Right for You?For many athletes, but especially runners and those that do long distance jogging alike, such strenuous exercise can have a serious toll on the body, from physical weakness to soreness, and even strains, sprains – or worse breakage. However, have no fear, as most if not all of these injuries can be prevented!

In fact, that’s exactly why a massage for runners can be so valuable. And, while it might sound silly or unusual, even the most professional, successful athletes can tell you and attest to regular messages being key to both performance and recovery. Getting a deep tissue or ‘sports massage’ regularly when physically active in sports can be very beneficial to both your physical and mental health.

One of the greatest benefits of a massage for runners is the positive impact it has on the overall cardiovascular and circular system. You see, how and when blood – with oxygen – and other nutrients is delivered throughout your body, into your muscles, will heavily dictate likelihood of performance, recovery time, and ability to do better the next time you go out there. Muscle tightness and range of motion will also be greatly improved over time with regular sports massages, but consistency is key.

A connected benefit to regular massages is that it can also help to motivate your body to more rapidly expel unwanted metabolic waste – and other unneeded acids. In fact, many pains, aches, and other soreness frequently associated with such waste can be eliminated, providing you with a smoother, and faster recovery. For athletes, especially bodybuilders, a message is likewise extremely variable. Similarly, that is, for its same muscle-restoring, strengthening, and injury-preventative properties.

Just know, and try to keep in mind that there are various types of massages – and masseuses- therefore it’s critical you ensure you are going to the right, licensed, and experienced sports masseuse or physical therapist that’s going to give you the right kind of deep tissue massage. When done correctly, it can also promote muscle repair and growth which means bigger, faster gains and performance.

Lastly, and this is often overlooked, but a regular massage for runners helps to ensure they are properly prepared or are ‘stretched out’ prior to any major race or competition. So, don’t ever underestimate the preventative value of a sports massage. Ideally, if possible, try to go with a licensed masseuse that is recommended by your physician or another massage specialist.

Remember, getting a massage doesn’t have to be every week – or even every two weeks for that matter. Depending on you and your current physical activity levels, it’s never too late to start getting regular sports massages.

NOTE: If you think you may already have an injury, have recently hurt yourself running, or during another physical sport or activity it is recommended that you first seek medical attention and care before getting a massage for runners.

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Benefits of Massage for Athletes

Benefits of Massage for AthletesMassage is an ancient art that continues to live on and grow in popularity as a type of alternative medicine used to promote wellness. The societal conception is primarily of massages as a method for relaxation, but a growing body of evidence shows that the effects go much deeper than just that. There are many different people who can benefit from regular massages, but one group in particular that can gain a lot of synergies from the soothing activity is athletes.

First of all, massages loosen our muscles and are akin to stretching in many ways. This leads to increased flexibility, which can be important for optimal performance and to reduce risk of injury. Massages should not replace stretching, but the two together likely have a greater impact of injury prevention and performance than either one alone. The stretching of muscle fibers is a big positive.

With the stretching, comes improved blood flow as vessels allow for increased blood to reach the massaged areas. Improved circulation can help with overall oxygenation of the body and can an impact on breathing as well. After the exercise, it can also have impacts on better recovery times. There is even some evidence that massages can help alleviate pain.

The relaxation effects of massages, especially deep tissue massages, can also help with improving sleep. Athletes can increase the quality and quantity of sleep, allowing them to better recharge for the next day and to rebuild their muscles are particularly strenuous outings. The relaxation itself has a great effect too of course. The stress relief is a big plus, especially in athletes who are particularly energetic or “type A”. Massages can help the body and mind relax, which is important for sustainability and optimal performance.

Because of the myriad of health benefits that massages have for athletes, the athletic massage market is expanding rapidly. Massage therapists are increasingly considering the arena (both literally and figuratively!) for their practice as more athletes look for that type of service. The locker rooms of professional sports places are full of massage therapists and this is only bound to expand to lower levels of sport. Athletes increasingly understand the importance of keeping their bodies well-conditioned and the role massages can play in that need. It will be interesting to see where the market heads as this thought permeates the culture of various sports and at all different levels.

A deep tissue massage once a week can help athletes stay in tip-top shape and perform better both physically and mentally. Massage therapists specializing in athletes can be found online or in the phone book. There are many different options and you should do your time on research to make sure you find the right fit for you. It is also possible that your gym or doctor has a recommendation which might work for you. It is all about doing some research, giving it a try, and deciding from there whether they are a good long term option. It could make the difference between a win and a loss.

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