What is the difference between the various types of massage?

Remedial massage, Deep tissue massage, Sports massage, Swedish massage, Myofascial release, Neuromuscular release, Soft tissue release, Trigger point massage, Lymphatic massage … the list seems endless. But what is the difference between the various types of massage?

When we were studying at the Northern Institute of Massage the then principal, Eddie Caldwell, would often be asked by new students what the difference was and if the Institute taught them. His answer was yes they ran courses for different types of massage but would add “do you know, at the end of the day it’s all skin rubbing”. Now this isn’t strictly true. There are differences, and they don’t just involve rubbing of the skin. But Mr Caldwell’s down-to-earth approach always manages to put things into perspective.

Massage, although an ancient art, is constantly being updated as variations in procedure or new therapeutic techniques are added to the toolbox. Unfortunately these new techniques are often padded out, inflated and given a new name in order to create a whole new therapy. It might be cynical to suggest that the reason for this …

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How Poor Posture Causes Neck and Shoulder Pain

We are all aware that poor posture can lead to neck and shoulder pain, but what are the processes involved?

The fact is we are designed to be hunter gatherers. In the natural state we would spend a good deal of the time standing, walking, running and generally moving about but in the modern world we spend much of our time sat at a desk, driving a car or slumped in front of the TV. Even if we don’t work at a desk, many of us have jobs that involve us looking down or maintaining the same bent over posture for hours on end (including masseurs I might add). Poor posture can also have a psychological root. Poor self esteem, anxiety and depression can result in this postural pattern. Negative emotions are expressed through flexion of the spine – the desire to curl up into a protective ball. Tall people who don’t wish to stand out from the crowd can also develop the slumped forward head posture. Maintaining the same posture causes unrelenting pressure on the same muscle groups and causes muscle fatigue. Naturally under these circumstances we slump forward, develop rounded shoulders and what is called a forward head posture.

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