I combine a multitude of massage techniques and stretching therapies to deliver effective bodywork. My one-on-one sessions are customized to meet the specific needs of each client. People come to me in all stages of pain and my goal is to find the root cause of that pain to facilitate healing. Below you will find explanations of the modalities I am trained in and will use during our time together.
MASSAGE MODALITIES :
Trigger Point Therapy
Trigger points are defined as “hyper-irritable areas associated within a taut band of muscle that are painful upon compression, contraction, or stretching of the muscle and often refer pain more distant to the location of the taut band”. The benefits of releasing such trigger points are numerous. More blood flow is brought to the area decreasing muscle tension and increasing mobility. Any time I find a trigger point on a client I work to release it using the proper technique. I also educate them on how to release your own trigger points at home with a tennis or lacrosse ball.
Developed by the osteopathic physician, John E. Upledger, CranioSacral Therapy (CST) uses a very light touch – no more than the weight of a nickel – to release restrictions in the craniosacral system. This has been shown to enhance the functioning of the central nervous system, along with many other body systems. The craniosacral system is made up of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround the brain and spinal cord for protection. Aside from acting like a cushion, the CSF also eliminates waste products from the brain and aids in proper function of the central nervous system. This therapy has proven helpful for those suffering trauma, migraines, chronic stress, depression and anxiety. Personally, I have found that incorporating CST into my sessions facilitates deep relaxation and a parasympathetic state (rest and digest mode) for my clients.
Sports massage is catered to the athlete on the table. Depending upon which sports they are involved in, I hone in on specific fascial lines that tend to be tight with specific repetitive movement patterns. The goals are to release fascial restrictions, enhance neuromuscular response and increase mobility.
Myofascial Release involves applying light pressure to the fascial connective tissue to release restrictions and restore motion. Surgery, trauma, and inflammation are a few of the things that can cause these restrictions.
Fascia is a type of connective tissue that surrounds nerves, muscles, groups of muscles, bones and organs down to the cellular level. It is a three dimensional web that is uninterrupted and is made up of collagen, elastin and fluid ground substance. You can think of fascia as a shock absorber that supports, connects, separates and protects our whole body. It is like the white membrane of an orange. One of my teacher’s explained it like this: “Think of normal fascia as cooked spaghetti in a zip-lock bag filled with water. The spaghetti moves freely and glides easily over each other. Now let’s pretend the bag is open and the water evaporates leaving the spaghetti sticky and bound together. This dehydration and restriction of movement is the equivalent of what happens to our fascial system when we experience trauma, inflammation, or years of poor posture. Good news is that we have the ability to influence this dysfunctional state using our hands to apply gentle pressure to the restricted areas which helps to rehydrate the fluid, decrease pain, increase flexibility and improve posture.”
I use myofascial release in most of my sessions anytime I want to address a postural issue or chronic pain. I have a lot of success with it. In particular, I work along the fascial patternsI learned from Tom Meyers. (https://www.anatomytrains.com/)
Ki-hara Resisted Stretching
Ki means circulating life energy while Hara means the body’s center of gravity/balancing point.
Ki-Hara Resistance Stretching is a revolutionary technique which utilizes a person’s own resistance for increasing lasting mobility. Ki-Hara uses scientifically-backed methods to reduce injury, balance muscle groups and increase flexibility using concentric exercises for strengthening and eccentric movements for stretching.
During Ki-Hara Resistance Stretching, the muscles are being contracted and lengthened at the same time so the muscles are only taken as far as they can resist to keep stretching safe and effective. The basic concept of Ki-Hara is that the muscles are strong throughout their ranges of motion–strength and flexibility go hand in hand– keeping the muscles more stable and explosive.
I am trained level 1 Ki-hara practitioner and use the technique when appropriate.
Esalen Massage (EM) is known for its healing and nurturing touch; it combines long strokes, gentle rocking and stretching, sculpting of deep musculature and the precision of acupressure. Taught and trademarked by the Esalen Institute, EM aims to tune the mind and body together to create a sense of serenity and peace. I lived at the institute for 1 month to complete my certification and use this modality often to bring clients into the parasympathetic (rest and digest) state.
In Japanese, “shi” means finger and “atsu” means pressure. This ancient therapy embraces a holistic approach where the massage therapist applies sustained pressure to specific acupuncture points to unlock any stagnant energy. There is a rhythm to this style and it will include circular motion, assisted stretching, palpation, kneading and joint mobilization. Typically shiatsu is performed through light clothing on a floor mat. While I am certified to give a full series Shiatsu massage, I tend to incorporate this style in the beginning of my table sessions to get a sense of where the tissue is stuck and help bring blood flow into the area before I work deeper with other techniques. The benefits of shiatsu: improve circulation, reduce stress, calm the nervous system, loosen stiff and contracted muscles.
Thai Massage is one of the four facets of Traditional Thai medicine and has been around for 2500 years, but reached the U.S. in the late 1980s.
While Thai medicine was influenced by several cultures – Chinese, Indian, and Southeast Asian – it is believed that the true founder was Shivago Komarpaj. Komarpaj was a practicing physician from Northern India who had close ties with the Buddha. This style of massage aims to restore healthy blood circulation by removing energy blockages through deep massage and stretching. It is based on a system of 72,000 energy lines known as Sen Lines that line the frame of the physical body. The system is very aligned with acupuncture meridians. Like Shiatsu, Thai massage is performed on a mat on the floor. While I am trained to perform a full Thai massage in the traditional floor manner, I tend to incorporate Thai massage stretches into my table sessions with clients.