Effectiveness of Massage
Massage is one of the easiest ways of attaining and maintaining good health and something we all do naturally. It is a healing instinct, innate in us all, to rub an aching shoulder. Headaches, aches and pains, insommnia, tension and stress can all be alleviated with our hands, forearms and even elbows.
History of Massage
Massage probably goes as far back in history as the existence of man. It is probably the oldest form of medical treatment, and has been used throughout history by all cultures. In ancient Greek and Roman literature there are numerous references to massage. It was advocated before and after sport, instead of exercise during convalescence, after bathing or as a medical treatment for such varied conditions as meloncholia, asthma, digestive problems and even sterility.
Massage has always been valued in India, and practically everyone you meet there knows how to massage. Massage is incorperated in Ayurvedic treatments - an indian system of medicine dating back to 1800BC- with herbs, spices and aromatic oils being rubbed into the skin.
In the 18th and 19th Century, massage grew popularity in Europe, under the influence of a swede, Per Henrik Ling (1776-1839), whose system of Swedish massage spread throughout Europe. He had great emphasis on medical gymnastics and massage, and classified his treatments as passive or gymnastic movements, pressure, friction, vibration, percussion and rotation.
At the end of the 19th century, massage was a popular medical treatment, and was frequently used by eminent surgeons, cardiologists and physicians, who either performed the massage themselves or trained people to do it for them.
Today once again, the therapeutic value of massage is being recognised. It is gaining it's rightful place in healthcare, as a compliment to other medical treatments, and as a means of helping us all to maintain a positive health.