What is a Hot Stone Massage?
Hot stone massage is the practice of massage with the addition of special flat stones which have been smoothed and shaped for the purpose of massage. There are three types of stones used for the practice and each is used for its ability to retain heat. There are conflicting origin stories relating to the practice. Some believe hot stones were used in the Mayan culture over 5000 years ago while others trace the practice to China over 2000 years ago. Either way, the practice has spread across the world just as other holistic forms of healing have done over the centuries. When hot stones are added to your massage the benefits include deeper muscle relaxation, increased stress relief, pain relief and better joint flexibility.
What should I expect when I book a hot stone massage?
When you book an appointment, you can expect that your therapist will ask about your general health and well-being. You’ll want to be open with any issues you are having as some conditions do not benefit from the use of additional heat. If you decide to book, be prepared to communicate throughout the massage to let your therapist know if the stones are too hot or lose too much of their warmth. Let your therapist know if the pressure or touch is too much or too little.
What happens during a hot stone massage?
Smooth, flat stones are heated and then lubricated with oil or essential oils. The stones retain the heat and are used as an extension of the therapist’s hands during a standard massage session. As hands and stones work in concert, they relax the muscles more deeply. As hands move away from an area, the stones may be left in place to let their warmth and weight penetrate the muscles. Many find the use of massage stones will encourage deeper relaxation.
When should you consider hot stone massage?
Any time! But hot stone massage may be most appealing for you when you feel that the winter weather hits your body harder than ever and the cold seeps in and stays. When every movement takes longer and your daily regimen includes pain relievers, ointments and anything else that might help.
How do I get the most from my hot stone massage?
Make sure you are booking with a licensed or certified massage therapist who practices good hygiene. It’s important that the stones are cleaned after every use.
Drink water before and after the massage.
Relax and enjoy!
The combination of massage, a warm table and blankets with the hot stones will get you through the winter and ready to face the world!