At Essential Massage and Watsu, we provide a variety of massage styles in addition to Watsu, an extremely effective aquatic therapy.
You can choose one in particular or combine many and create a very personalized session. Either way, our aim is to give a profoundly relaxing experience on physical, emotional and mental levels.
One of the most common and well-known massage techniques, Swedish massage, is a vigorous system of treatment designed to energize the body by stimulating circulation. Five basic strokes, all flowing toward the heart, are used to manipulate the soft tissues of the body. I use a combination of kneading, rolling, vibrational, percussive, and tapping movements, with the application of Biotone massage cream, to reduce friction on the skin. The many benefits of Swedish massage include generalized relaxation, dissolution of scar tissue adhesions, and improved circulation, which may speed healing and reduce swelling from injury.
The techniques that encompass deep-tissue/deep-muscle massage are administered to affect the sub-layer of musculature and fascia. This involves using elbows, fists and thumbs to achieve a greater pressure. It helps with chronic muscular pain and injury rehabilitation and reduces inflammation-related pain caused by arthritis and tendinitis. It is generally integrated with other massage techniques.
Based on an ancient Chinese therapy, reflexology involves manipulation of specific reflex areas in the foot, hands, and ears that correspond to other parts of the body. This bodywork involves application of pressure to these reflex zones to stimulate body organs and relieve areas of congestion. Similar to acupressure principles, reflexology works with the body’s energy flow to stimulate self-healing and maintain balance in physical function. This technique is used to reduce pain, increase relaxation, and stimulate circulation of blood and lymphatic fluids.
This system of massage utilizes very large and broad movements involving both hands, forearms, and elbows. The strokes can cover much area, for example, going from the feet up to the shoulders and back again in one fell swoop. One could describe the general feeling of Lomi-Lomi as flowing, nurturing and sensitive. Similar to Swedish massage, the application of cross-fiber friction techniques is used to further liberate muscular adhesions. Often forearms and elbows are used for the application of greater pressure.
Craniosacral therapy is a gentle, non-invasive and hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the function of a physiological body arrangement called the Craniosacral system. The Craniosacral system consists of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. The therapist carries out a sequence of various light “hand-holds” (usually between 5 and 10 grams of pressure) feeling the minute movements made by the body. In essence, it is a facilitation of “unwinding” on the part of the therapist (passive movements) which thereby allows a spontaneous release of blockages and restrictions held within the body of the client. The effects can range from the subtle (feeling deep relaxation or a sense of energetic warmth) to the more intense (seeing colors or entering into trance). Craniosacral therapy encourages the body’s natural healing mechanisms to improve the functioning of the central nervous system, dissipate the negative effects of stress, and enhance health and resistance to illness.
Watsu is a nurturing form of bodywork that takes place in warm, chest-deep water, with the therapist cradling the person who is receiving. Watsu can be a profound treatment that works on both body and mind.