With the main goal of any massage being to promote relaxation of the mind and body, adding hot stones to a session is an excellent method of delivering on this mission. Hot stone massage is a technique rooted in ancient culture that utilizes smooth heated stones to aid in encouraging your body to release tension and stiffness. As a great way to jazz up your regular massage, adding hot stones is the perfect treat to ward of the cold of winter and can help prime your body to receive a deeper, more beneficial massage.
The most common stones used in this form of massage therapy are basalt rocks. This is due to their innate smoothness and ability to retain a gentle soothing heat. During a session, these rocks are heated to approximately 120 to 150 degrees and strategically placed along the back and neck on top of key muscle groups to allow the body to release tension. The soothing heat induces relaxation and sets the stage for a deep massage.
This heat sensation is also key in aiding individuals that suffer from seasonal affective disorder. Other benefits for adding hot stones include:
- Notable decrease in muscle stiffness and tension
- Fewer muscle spasms
- Boosts mobility by increasing flexibility in joints
- Provide relief from chronic conditions such as arthritis
- Relieves overused muscles
- Encourages relaxation
- Lowers stress levels
- Facilitates better sleep
- Increases blood flow throughout body with use of heat and pressure
With winter weather on deck, the next time you come in for a massage, talk to your massage therapist about giving hot stone massage a try!