By Carolina Cuartas - November 11, 2019
Hot Stone Massage is known for the intense nature of the hot basalt stones that are placed on specific points of the body. The most prominent reason massage therapists use it is to apply more pressure since it penetrates deep into your muscles and tissues. It makes those muscles a lot easier for the therapist to work on. A Hot Stone Massage is especially useful for clients with tense muscles and in need of de-stressing and relaxation. It also adds an extra sensory input and has been compared to the sensation of using a heating pad.
A Brief History
Using hot stones for medicinal purposes has been practiced for a long time. It helps you relax and eases tense muscles and damaged soft tissues throughout your body. The Hindus in India practiced the earliest use of hot stones for relaxation and health purposes over 5,000 years ago. They called this practice Ayurveda. Hot stones were used to relieve pain and relax tense muscles.
Fast forward 3,000; the Chinese used hot stones to improve the function of internal organs. Other parts of the world began to use hot stones, as well. For example, in Hawaii, what used to be known as the Sandwich Islands, used wrapped heated lava rocks for pain relief. Stones were also used for healing work in North America, South America, Africa, Egypt, and India.
Helps relieve muscle tension and pain
A Hot Stone Massage could leave you feeling physically better than a Swedish or Deep Tissue Massage that does not incorporate heat. The stones allow the masseuse to get more depth more quickly for more intense pressure. Healthline explains, "Heat has long been used to ease muscle tension and pain. It helps increase blood flow to the affected area. It may also reduce muscle spasms and increase flexibility and range of motion." (Source)
Reduces anxiety and depression
When you get a massage with hot stones, the parasympathetic portion of your nervous system is switched on. The parasympathetic portion is sometimes called the rest and digest system (Source). The parasympathetic system can help manage stress and anxiety. It also conserves energy as it slows the heart rate and increases intestinal and gland activity. (Source)
Like any massage, it promotes relaxation which can help you sleep more easily. A study reported by the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences, demonstrated an effectiveness on hemodialysis patients. A controlled study, “... showed a significant difference between quality of sleep before and after the intervention. So, applying massage therapy by hot stone in hemodialysis patients was effective on their sleep quality. (Source)
It is important to let your massage therapist know if you feel that the heat from the stones is too much or that the pressure he or she is using is too harsh. We offer Hot Stone Massage at LoDo Massage Studio. Make sure to call at least an hour and half before you book your Hot Stone Massage appointment.