Clearwater Massage

How Massage Therapy Can Supercharge Your Health

How Massage Therapy Can Supercharge Your HealthLately, people are looking forward to discovering ways of staying healthy until a late age, which is nothing but great news. We all know how important is to pay your doctor a visit regularly or stick to a daily – if your schedule allows it – exercise routine, combined with a healthy diet.

On the other side, it’s less known that proper massage therapy, conducted by a professional, can also have a huge impact on one’s health. In fact, let’s take a few moments and see which are the essential benefits of this type of therapy!

It relieves stress

There’s no doubt that this is one of the main benefits massage therapy comes with. It was scientifically proven that being constantly exposed to stress can increase the risk of heart disease, but also diabetes or hypertension, so getting massage regularly is pretty much one of the best things one can try in order to deal with what’s called “the disease of the 21st century”.

A massage session can be an intensely relaxing experience, as you’re simply lying back and feel how the tension ‘living’ your muscles is immediately going away.

It helps you get better sleep

The lack of sleep can also be a tremendous problem, affecting the majority of adults in the United States and leading to a range of chronic conditions, like cardiovascular disease, depression, diabetes, or even obesity. But guess what? Massage therapy can be one of the best solutions to it.

By getting rid of muscle tension and setting a moment in the day when you slow down a bit, you can enter a prolonged state of intense relaxation, which can last long after the massage session.

No more high blood pressure

How many times did you analyze your diet? Just do it once and you’ll most likely notice that you are eating too much…salt. Yes, salt, and this has a negative impact on your blood pressure, placing a strain on the heart, leading to hypertension and increasing the risk of a stroke.

It was proven that massage therapy can contribute to reducing high blood pressure, lowering systolic, as well as diastolic blood pressure. Also, according to recent research, it regulates the levels of cortisol, the hormone responsible for raising the pressure.

It strengthens the immune system

Recent studies have proven that massage can significantly improve the response of the immune system. Specifically, people who started massage therapy admitted experiencing a notable spike in the production of lymphocytes, the cells responsible for protecting your body from diseases.

Combined with its stress relieving ‘powers’, a massage session could be incredibly helpful for anybody who wants to maintain their immunity at top levels.

So, supercharging your health through massage sounds like an excellent idea, don’t you think? If you’re located in the Clearwater area, Maria is the one who can help you. Combining multiple massage types, including Ashiatsu, Cupping, Deep Tissue, or even Warm Bamboo, with her modern anatomical knowledge and the philosophy of Asian culture, she is the one who can introduce you to massage therapy and its full benefits.

Picture Credit: Nicole De Khors

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Is It Actually Worth Buying Organic Food?

Is It Actually Worth Buying Organic Food?You’ve probably heard a lot about organic food lately, as it seems a real trend with a constantly growing fan base. In fact, this trend turned into a $43 billion business, with a lot of potential. But the interesting part is that a lot of people struggle to understand why the term “organic” actually means and if it’s worth paying more for food labelled like this.

Technically speaking, “organic” refers to the way of growing and processing agricultural products. In the United States, organic crops must be grown without making use of any synthetic pesticides, as well as bioengineered genes, fertilizers based on petroleum, or based on sewage and sludge, in order to be labelled as organic.

And this is not everything.

The livestock raised for meat and dairy products should have access to an outdoor environment and receive organic feed, not to mention that it’s forbidden to inject them with antibiotics, growth hormones or any type of animal by-products, for the ‘organic’ label to be applied.

As for the increased cost of organic food, this is mostly because farmers do not use any pesticides, chemicals or fertilizers, therefore having to pay more for the labour force.

Now that we know why the entire hassle about this type of food, let’s get back to the initial question: is it worth paying more for it?

We’ve identified a couple of arguments in its favour:

It doesn’t contain any man-made pesticides

It is forbidden to use dangerous chemicals like fungicides, herbicides or insecticides when growing organic produce, otherwise widely used in conventional agriculture, as a lot of people are simply not aware of the dangers these can expose consumers to.

Since they are made without any chemicals, organic foods are technically safer for consumption.

It’s fresher, in most cases

Since preservatives aren’t used either, in order to make it last longer, you have the guarantee that all the organic food you buy is always fresh. In most cases, it’s produced within smaller farms, near the places where it’s sold.

It doesn’t contain any GMOs

There’s a big debate over the impact of GMO’s on health, but for the moment there aren’t enough long-term studies, able to determine if they are safe or not. Some studies made on animals, however, indicated that they can cause damage, so in this case, we’re going with the “better safe than sorry” approach. And this is why organic food can be worth the money: no risks of eating something that contains genetically modified organisms.

As you can see, there are some important arguments in favour of eating organically, but let’s not forget that it can be really pricey, so not everybody can afford it. However, if you still want to eat healthily, but without breaking the budget, you can start with the so-called “Dirty Dozen”.

To be more specific, we’re talking about strawberries, nectarines, apples, grapes, peaches, cherries, or pears, as well as veggies, like spinach, tomatoes, celery, potatoes, and peppers. If your budget allows it, add some organic meat and some dairy to your shopping cart.

Ok, so back again to the question: is this type of food worth it? Overall, yes, it’s healthier and it can make you feel better, as well as relaxed, knowing that you eat good food, without any negative impact on your health.

Picture Credit: jill111

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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.

Image credit: carloslandazuri

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Mother & Baby Massage Team

Me & Isis Massage TeamAs my regular clients know, I have had the good fortune of being able to continue massage during my entire pregnancy, up until the day I gave birth to a baby girl, Isis, on March 29, 2013.

My original plan was to have a friend’s mom babysit her or place into an infant care facility, but the babysitting fell through and the thought of placing her with a stranger in a facility this young didn’t seem as appealing after looking into it more.  Plus, I feel it’s important as a parent to get  bonding time  in with Isis as much as possible because she’s only a baby for a brief amount of time and I don’t want to miss out on it.

Now Isis is 2 months old, and has been my massage sidekick for 1.5 months now.  I appreciate both the loyalty and patience of my clients who continued to come to me for massages despite Isis’s crying and fussing at times during a session.  Now she and I have a routine worked out that is successful most of the times to where she is happy and the client can get a quiet massage. If she gets fussy in her bassinet,  I put her into the baby carrier and carry her on  me as I massage.  Normally she watches as I work or dozes off.  And as I said,  she’s  not guaranteed to be cry free during the session, because she is a baby, after all…

 

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Thai Yoga Massage

Over this past year, I have been studying Thai Yoga Massage. I have over 65 hours of training in the Southern style through Dr. James’ Thai Yoga Center and Soma Veda Institute. Lydia Smith, the instructor, introduced the class to Southern Style Thai Massage as well as other complementary & holistic topics, such as Vitalism, veganism and Bio-Tapp therapy.

Over the past weekend I completed over 15 hour of Northern Style Thai Massage training at the Orlando School of Thai Massage from instructor Rob Murray. He is well versed with the Thai culture as well at Thai massage for he started giving him mother Thai Massages in Thailand at the age of 6. I am honored to have to opportunity to work with a native Thai instructor in Florida and am excited about my journey onward into the art of Thai Yoga Massage.

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Proof of Additional Health Benefits from Therapeutic Massage

In spite of getting used world wide for many years in numerous people’s lives, massage therapy continues to be seen as an optional treatment.  This implies that its gains  basically are not recognized by most physicians and medical professionals despite the fact that physical rehabilitation  requires massage .

Massage therapy can be performed by any person but for the best results,  the therapeutic massage should  be done by a skilled therapist. None the less, although a large number of specialists are skeptical regarding  to the advantages to massage,  they tend to agree that both relaxation and the reducing of painful muscular areas can be accomplished through massage.   Most trust that therapeutic massage might be beneficial in other ways such as: enhancing the defense system, reducing anxiety along with raising the metabolism.

read more …

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Advanced Reflex Therapy – Day 2

I attended part 2 of the “Advanced Reflex Therapy” Workshop today. Just when I thought yesterday was an intense day of working on the feet and hands and other reflex points, today was even more brutal! Today’s focus was the shoulder and upper vertebra region of the spine and organs which may be associated with contributing pain and discomfort to that region. By the time class was over, the parts of my hands that received the reflex therapy work felt like they had been beaten up by a martial artist who knew Qi Gong!

Although I won’t be using the techniques I learned at this workshop on all my clients (as it was truly torturously painful), it has re-enlightened me to the fact that there is no one modality of massage that’s the panacea for everyone’s physical ailments. One has to also take into consideration not only the muscles, but all the other anatomical, physiological and energy components involved in the client being treated.

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Advanced Reflex Therapy – Quick Pain Relief

Today is my first of 2 days attending a workshop on “Advanced Reflex Therapy” at the Grand Hotel in Clearwater, Florida.  The instructor, Dr. Art Brown, is a light-hearted, upbeat gentleman and also the founder of this simple, quick and easy methodology for lessening pain on the body.  It’s similar to Reflexology where the therapist works specific points around the feet, hands, scalp and ears, which correlate to other parts of the body that are the problematic areas.  By working these points on a client, one’s pain can reduce in specific targeted areas, as the focus of this modality is the nervous system.

I learned pain reduction techniques for the lower body,  which included the sciatic nerve, hips, mid to lower back,  knees and feet.  And I kid you not, this can be a painful experience, as it was for me as well as the other students who attended.  Also, bruising, swelling and soreness are not uncommon at the points that have been worked as it’s a sign that the body is detoxing.  To me, the best part is the self treatment, where you can perform these sometimes painful, yet effective techniques on yourself and feel the results.

You don’t have to be a massage therapist to attend this workshop and gain valuable knowledge on keeping yourself as pain-free as you can. If you would like to learn more about this modality, check out the website:
http://nowiamhealthy.com

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Why would someone want a “barefoot” Ashiatsu Massage?

Barefoot deep tissue, also known as barefoot compressive deep tissue, or barefoot sports massage, is a blend of Eastern barefoot techniques, such as barefoot Shiatsu massage, coupled with Western techniques, encompassing deep tissue, myofascial release, trigger point therapy, transverse friction and compression.

This modality typically uses the heel, sesamoid, arch and/or whole plantar surface of foot, and offers large compression, tension and shear forces with less pressure than elbow or thumb, and is ideal for large muscles, such as in thigh, or for long-duration upper trapezius compressions.

Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy, which is a form of barefoot effleurage, combines western science and contemporary American ingenuity, for clients who enjoy deep tissue work using Swedish techniques performed by the massage therapists feet.

There are bars close to the ceiling, which the therapist uses for balance in order to execute the footwork.

This is a great intro to any type of deep tissue session.

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