If you’re looking for a relaxing and rejuvenating massage, you might be wondering which type to choose. Swedish and therapeutic massages are both popular options, but they have different techniques and benefits. Don’t worry though – we’ve got you covered! In this article, we’ll break down the differences between these two types of massages, so you can make an informed decision and choose the best one for you.
What’s the Difference? – Swedish vs Therapeutic Massage
Want to know the difference between Swedish and therapeutic massage?
Swedish massage is all about relaxation and reducing stress. It’s a treatment that focuses on your back, neck, shoulders, and scalp. It’s also great for relieving tension in your muscles and increasing blood flow throughout your body.
Therapeutic massage is designed to help with specific ailments or injuries. This kind of treatment will focus on the muscles that are causing you pain, as well as any other parts of your body that may be affected by those problems (like your joints).
Let’s learn more.
Swedish massage is a hands-on, manual therapy focused on improving circulation and reducing muscle tension. It is used to treat a variety of conditions, including chronic pain, muscle fatigue and tension, headaches, stress and anxiety, poor posture, and poor circulation.
Swedish massage therapists apply long strokes to your muscles in the direction of blood flow. They use gentle pressure using their hands, elbows, or even forearms to increase the flow of blood through the body’s vessels. They may also use light fingertip pressure on specific points to promote relaxation and ease discomfort.
According to a study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine in 2014, Swedish massage can be effective in treating low back pain because it stimulates the release of endorphins into the bloodstream—the body’s natural feel-good chemicals that help alleviate pain.
Swedish Massage Technique
Swedish massage is a type of therapeutic massage that concentrates on improving circulation, relieving muscle tension and pain, and increasing flexibility. It also works to balance the body’s nervous system. Swedish massage usually involves long strokes, kneading, and friction techniques.
The focus is not on any particular area or problem but on relaxing the client. The therapist may use oil or lotion to lubricate the skin before massaging it with their hands.
Swedish massage can be done in a number of ways:
• Effleurage (stroking)—the massage therapist uses long strokes along the muscles of the body to relax them while increasing blood flow to them.
• Petrissage (kneading)—the therapist uses gentle squeezing motions on specific points or groups of muscles to release tension from them.
• Friction—the therapist uses friction techniques with their hands or other tools like a ball to increase circulation in an area of concern for pain relief or relaxation purposes such as after an injury has occurred during an activity such as running or playing sports where you might have bumped into something hard enough for it to bruise your muscles causing slight bleeding under your skin which could be painful if left untreated so sometimes doctors will prescribe this type of treatment for patients who suffer from chronic pain.
You may also be interested in my latest article on Swedish Massage vs Deep Tissue Massage.
Therapeutic massage uses a technique of applying pressure to soft tissue with the intention of relieving pain and improving the range of motion.
It can also be used to treat and prevent injuries, improve posture and balance, release muscle tension and spasms, relieve headaches and migraines, and promote blood circulation and lymph drainage.
Therapeutic massage has been shown to improve immune function, reduce stress by lowering cortisol levels (the stress hormone), increase the quality of sleep, and improve mood.
Therapeutic Massage Technique
Therapeutic massage is a type of massage that focuses on the muscles and soft tissues of your body, rather than the energy of the person. It’s important to note that this is not an alternative to conventional massage therapy—it’s simply a different way of thinking about how you can help people feel better.
Therapeutic massage uses various techniques to work with different kinds of muscle and tissue, including:
• Trigger point release: This technique involves working in specific areas of tension in order to release them. When these knots of tension are released, they can help restore balance to the body’s muscles and joints. For example, if someone has carpal tunnel syndrome, they may have knots in their hands that need to be worked on so they can move freely again.
• Myofascial release: This technique allows you to stretch out myofascial restrictions (tightness) in the body by manipulating soft tissue as well as connective tissue such as ligaments and tendons.
• Lymphatic drainage: This technique helps clear toxins from your lymphatic system by massaging it gently while also providing compression through rhythmic pumping movements that encourage fluid movement along channels throughout your body.
Disadvantages of Swedish Massage
Swedish massage is a type of massage in which the practitioner uses long strokes to knead and relax muscles. It is often applied as a general relaxation technique, but it can also be used to treat specific ailments.
Swedish massage is one of the most popular types of massage therapy. It’s also one of the oldest known forms, having been developed in Europe over 100 years ago.
Here are some of its pros:
- Swedish massage helps you relax and feel less stressed out.
- It can help ease tension headaches, stiff necks, and sore shoulders (among other things).
- It can help improve circulation in your body by increasing blood flow through your veins and arteries. This increased circulation helps your skin look brighter and healthier overall.
Here are some cons:
- Some people find that they fall asleep during Swedish massages because they’re so relaxing! If you have trouble staying awake for long periods of time without moving around (like if you have narcolepsy), then this might not be for you.
Disadvantages of Therapeutic Massage
Therapeutic massage is a great way to relieve stress and tension, but it’s not for everyone. Here are some of the things you should know before you decide to try it:
- If you’re looking for a relaxing experience, therapeutic massage may not be a good fit for you. Therapeutic massage is extremely focused on specific areas of the body, which can feel intense and even uncomfortable at times.
- You need to be comfortable being touched by another person in order to benefit from therapeutic massage. The therapist will touch your body in ways that may feel unfamiliar or uncomfortable if you aren’t used to being touched in that way—and there’s no way around it.
- If you want immediate results, this isn’t the right choice for you. Massages take time to work their magic—and often require multiple sessions—so if all you want is a quick fix, therapeutic massage may not be right for you!
Swedish Massage vs Therapeutic – Massage Which Is Better?
You might be wondering what the difference is between Swedish and therapeutic massage. After all, they both sound pretty similar. But they actually have very different effects on your body.
Swedish massage is a relaxing treatment that focuses on the muscles and joints. It’s great for stress relief and helps relieve tension in your muscles. It can also help improve circulation to relax your muscles further and increase flexibility.
Therapeutic massage, on the other hand, focuses on improving the muscle tissue itself—which often requires more pressure than Swedish massage does. Therapeutic massage can be used to treat injuries or chronic pain conditions like arthritis or fibromyalgia by providing deep tissue stimulation that increases blood flow to damaged areas of muscle tissue.
Which one you choose depends on what you’re looking for! If you want a relaxing treatment that will help relieve some stress with no real medical benefits (and no pain), then Swedish massage might be right up your alley. If you want something more effective at treating injuries or chronic pain conditions, then therapeutic massage might be better suited for your needs!
FAQs – Types of Massage
Claudia Faucher is a full-time fitness training expert and lifestyle blogger. She is also been a certified Les Mills BodyPump instructor for the past 5 years and a fitness instructor for over 20 years. Claudia is a personal trainer and creates fitness training programs for seniors and people of all ages. She likes to use her skills and experiences to help others on their fitness journeys.