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Guide to Enjoying the Best Relaxation Massage

Guide to Enjoying the Best Relaxation Massage

Since joining the team at a Evolution Health Services, I have been utilising my skills of massage to help relax my clients. As Massage Therapists we often notice that clients don’t always come in fully prepared to let go and enjoy the experience. They are not living in the moment. They are thinking about what to do next or stressing about an issue at home. I thought it would be a great idea to create a guide to enjoying the best relaxation massage. That way, clients come in prepared to stop, clear the mind and give their body the chance to reset.

Are you ready to let go of everything for an hour? Try these simple steps:

  • Give yourself time to arrive 5-10 mins early for your appointment. By rushing into your appointment, it will take you longer to get into a relaxed state
  • Unplug from technology. Turn your phone to silent. Take off your smart devices and leave the world outside for an hour.
  • Do you have a music request? Some people find running water relaxation music a little too stimulating to the bladder, so share with us what you enjoy listening to and we will do our best to accommodate.
  • On that note, head to the bathroom before coming in. We have toilets located down the main hallway so you don’t have the pressure or worry on your mind.
  • Specify any areas of the body you like touched. If you know a foot massage will send you to sleep, ask for us to add this in. If your feet are too sensitive, we can avoid there too. Your treatment can be customised to you.
  • Let me know at any time during the treatment if you would like the pressure firmer or softer. I’m happy to adjust pressure as often as necessary.
  • Relax & try to let your thoughts go. These thought will always return later so no need to worry about them now.
  • While you may get more benefits from the massage if you avoid talking, if you prefer a chat, that’s completely fine too.
  • If you’re feeling relaxed enough to fall asleep, please don’t be embarrassed. I’ll take it as a compliment.

Next time you book your massage with us, take my advice and enjoy the best massage experience we can offer. If you’re ready to relax now, book online.

How Long Am I Considered Post Natal?

How Long Am I Considered Post Natal?

We often receive questions about the post natal body. When are women no longer considered post natal and is it too late to make any changes to our bodies? Well the simple answer is once you have had a child you are always considered “post-natal”.

By no means does this mean you are forever broken and you won’t be able to return to activities you previously enjoyed. It just means you need to be cautious and consideration needs to be given to your personal circumstances and experience in pregnancy and childbirth.

Following your pregnancy and childbirth, there are considerations we make when programming our fitness sessions, as well as care taken with Remedial Massage.

Considerations for the Post Natal Body

Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

The pelvic floor refers to all the connective tissues that support the pelvic organs in the body. These include the muscles, ligaments, and fascia. It’s common following pregnancy, even with c-sections, that you may experience some form of pelvic floor dysfunction. This could be a pelvic organ prolapse, incontinence or pelvic pain. And while this is common, it’s most definitely not normal and can be treated. In our Mums & Bubs program we ask questions about your circumstances and refer to a Women’s Health Physiotherapist when appropriate. We design our workouts to help you learn correct alignment, breathing and core activation to support your pelvic floor which helps to prevent issues in later life.

*** Did you know: Up to 50% of women who exercise will experience incontinence. Many more will probably never report it due to the embarrassment they feel around it. Don’t be embarrassed, there is help available ***

Breastfeeding

Whether you make the decision to breastfeed or not, immediately after childbirth your body is still working out the hormones it needs in your body and to support your child. In the early stages, care needs to be taken with a slow, low impact return to exercise. If you continue to breastfeed, hormones present in your body while breastfeeding keep your tissues soft. Soft connective tissues lead to a higher risk of injury to any joint in the body, as well as pressure on the structures of the pelvic floor. This will continue while you are breastfeeding and take some time to settle again once your baby has weaned.

*** Myth: Have you ever heard that intense exercise or massage can cause ‘toxins’ to be released into breastmilk? This is false. Normal cell byproducts are filtered by the body and are not a danger to breastmilk and massage doesn’t release toxins. ***

Diastasis Rectii

Abdominal separation or Diastasis Rectii is a normal part of pregnancy. It involves the connective tissue between your rectus abdominus muscles called the linea alba relaxing and expanding to allow for your uterus to expand as your baby grows. Once you give birth, it takes time for the abdominal muscles to come back together. Exercise should focus on alignment, correct breathing and connection with the pelvic floor. The worst thing you can do for a separation is crunches and sit ups. They cause the area to bulge as the tension in the linea alba has yet to return.

*** Tip: During and following pregnancy, learn how to get up from lying position to prevent putting too much pressure on your abdominal separation. From lying, roll onto your side, use your hand to push up into a seated position. This is how you should get up from a massage table too. ***

Fatigue

As a mum, we are tired. All. The. Time. Especially in the early stages when our sleep is constantly broken by the needs of your bub. Even 4 years after having my son, I’m still having broken sleep and trying to juggle full time work. When you are already fatigued, your workouts should be focused on giving you more energy, as opposed to draining you. Strength training with bodyweight exercises, resistance bands, kettlebells and dumbbells are a great way to build a stronger body without exhausting you.

Menopause

Years after having children, our bodies go through the change of life and we enter menopause. This time of life involves a change in hormones again. The lack of Oestrogen in the body causes a weakening and thinning of the supporting structures of the pelvic floor, resulting in pelvic organ prolapse. The body may not show the stresses caused from a vaginal delivery until menopause so it’s important to be aware of the changes in our bodies and seek help when we are concerned. With exercise, low impact, strength training with a focus on changing position to reduce the pressure on your pelvic floor is needed so you can continue exercise well into menopause.

*** Did you know: 50% of women who have had a baby will have some degree of prolapse in their lifetime ***

It may seem like pregnancy really does a number on our bodies, but there is hope. Referral to a Women’s Health Physiotherapist can help to complement your training program and provide treatment suitable for pregnancy experience. We offer Mums & Bubs Fitness Classes to educate you on the most appropriate activity for the post natal body. We provide exercise suitable for the new mum but also suitable for any mum of any age to get started. If you would like to try a class for free, we offer a free trial. All you need to do is book your class online here: Mums & Bubs Fitness Bookings

Contact Us with any questions about your post natal body and how to get started with fitness or massage.

Massage Therapy Aftercare: Lower Back

Massage Therapy Aftercare: Lower Back

We know massage therapy helps with lower back pain, but what can you do to prevent pain returning in between visits to see us?

CORE EXERCISES!

If the muscles surrounding your spine are weak, your spine will not be properly supported. The spine is supposed to naturally have a slight forward curve to it. However, weak core muscles will make this position impossible. A weak core results in changing the way weight is carried through your spine and putting excess tension on surrounding muscles and tendons resulting in, you guessed it, lower back pain.

What exercises should you do?

  • Transverse Abdominus Activation

The basis to all core training starts with being able to identify and activate your deep abdominal muscles. These muscles form the front of your whole core structure and work in conjunction with your pelvic floor and diaphragm. To activate, start by lying on your back, knees bent, feet on the floor. Take a deep breath through your diaphragm (expanding your belly and lower ribs). As you exhale, draw in your lower abdominals and your pelvic floor. To feel this muscle activate, place your hands on the inside of your hips bones and as you draw in, you will feel the tension increase. Read more in our blog Understanding the Core and Pelvic Floor.

  • Clam Shells

To do the clam shell lie on your side with your knees slightly bent, keeping your legs and ankles together. You can rest your head on an outstretched arm during the exercise. Place your other hand on your hip, and then open and close your knees like a clam by lifting your top knee and keeping your feet together. You should feel this exercise activating through your core as well as your glute muscles.

  • Dead Bug

To do the dead bug, begin lying on your back with your hands extended above you toward the ceiling. Bring your feet, knees, and hips up to 90 degrees. Exhale hard to prevent your ribcage from flaring, squeezing your glutes and hold your spine in a neutral position, keeping the natural curve in the spine. Hold this position throughout the movement. This will be your starting position. Extend one leg, straightening the knee and hip to bring the leg just above the ground. Maintain the position of your lumbar and pelvis as you perform the movement, as your back is going to want to arch. Stay tight and return the working leg to the starting position. Repeat on the opposite side, alternating. You can also do the same movement with the opposite arm at the same time for a bit of an extra challenge.

  • Bird Dog

Same as the dead bug, but you are doing it looking at the ground, on all fours. Maintaining good core control, a neutral pelvis and spine alignment. Without allowing the pelvis to tilt from side to side, slowly lift the opposite arm and leg to a straight position. Take care not to relax your core, allowing your lower back to arch.

  • Planks

Start by getting into a push up position. Bend your elbows and rest your weight onto your forearms and not on your hands. Your body should form a straight line from shoulders to ankles. Engage your core by sucking your belly button into your spine. Hold this position for as long as you can.

So if you like the results from your massage and you want that pain to stay away longer, follow our advice and continue your self care at home. If you have any questions following your treatment, speak to your Remedial Massage Therapist from the Evolution Massage Team.  If you need to get your back pain under control, Book Onlaine for your next Remedial Massage. We are here to help you get more out of life and empower you to make the best decisions for your body.

Massage Therapy is the Ultimate Happy Food

Massage Therapy is the Ultimate Happy Food

So we all know that exercise, chocolate and wine encourage the body to release endorphins. Those wonderful happy feel good hormones that the body produces that make you feel relaxed, comfortable and just genuinely good about yourself.

It’s cold and raining outside, you’ve just worked all week and feel like a lazy weekend. You’ve been so good, you’ve been losing weight, watching your caloric intake, you don’t want to ruin it with chocolate and wine. But what if you could release those endorphins another way.

The relaxing, pampering nature of massage encourages the body to release Endorphins and not only does massage encourage the body to produce them, but it also increases blood flow and circulation around the body, meaning they get distributed around your whole body quicker. No wonder you feel so good after a massage, right? And you don’t even have to work up a sweat or worry about empty calories.

If you need a dose of happiness this week, why not schedule your next Massage with us. Book Online any time of the day or night.

What Would You Like to Teach Your Children?

What Would You Like to Teach Your Children?

You work hard all week to provide for your family. You work long hours, you commute hours to work and put up with a tough boss all in the effort of being able to give your children the best start in life. You put your children first as you know the importance of a good start in life. You make sure they are in sport, eat a good dinner and go to bed at a reasonable hour. You are so tired after all the running around you prepare yourself a quick meal, complain about that niggling ache you have had for weeks, fall onto the lounge and may even fall asleep there. You have done an amazing job of caring for your children, but what about you? What would like to teach your children about caring for their own health?   As a mum I have learnt from my own mum that you put yourself last for your children. While I appreciate everything that my mum did for us, I would have loved to see her healthy and happy too. I wonder if there a better way we can all get what we need. Blake is watching everything that we do from such a young age and I want to be able to teach him that it’s ok to care for himself.  From 6 months old, Blake has watched us start our Outdoor Training Classes in Hurley Park. He came along to the Saturday sessions in Winter, snuggled up in his pram with my Nephew JJ, as our first members kickstarted their fitness program. Our first clients were my family. My mum, two sisters and 11 year old neice. As the boys grew, they started to mimic our moves. They would squat, do arm circles to warm up and tried little push ups. Today they run, jump and do burpees. All without ever been shown technique as I do with adults. They learnt through watching us move and had a go too. Through Fitness we were able to set a positive example and show how moving your body makes you feel.  When it comes to nutrition in our household, we believe in balance and moderation. We are not perfect and work to make better choices each day. We like to indulge at times but are learning to reduce the options on the Christmas dessert table and invite more people to birthdays to share the cake. We try to make sure Blake has fresh fruit and vegetables for him every day but what about us? We make sure that we also eat the fruit and veggies. We know that making one nutritious meal for the whole family means we are all taken care of. Blake makes such amazing choices sometimes that it blows us away. He prefers water over any juice, loves bananas, peaches and yoghurt, and sultanas. We have never forced him to eat this but with what was available to him, these are the choices he made. When I eat something I probably shouldn’t, I see him curious to try. When I say no, I realise that by not wanting him to have it, should I even be having it. I need to model the food behaviours that I would like Blake to have too.   This week I was giving my Nan a Remedial Massage. She needs some assistance getting onto my massage table and travelling. My mum was minding Blake while I worked and brought my Nan down for her appointment. He wanted to stay in the room so I allowed it. This was the first time he had ever seen my work in my clinic rooms. He looked and listened as I spoke. He watched as I started to treat my Nan. She made a noise as I hit a painful point. He then began asking “you alright Nan?”. He understood that something was happening and mummy was helping. The following day he walked up to my husband and said “Daddy, sore?” pointing to his arm. He then began to massage his arm. I realised then that we have been teachinghim the importance of touch and caring for one another.  Over time we have realised the importance of self care. As parents we plan our time to allow each of us to have regular massage to treat issues impacting on our health. We want to be able to spend quality time with Blake without pain or stress. Tristan is part of Wimp2Warrior to follow his own passion for MMA Training, teaching Blake to follow your dreams. I am working on making it to more training sessions or making time to train myself. There are plenty of things we can do each week to care for ourselves outside of these. Something as simple as a walk, window shopping, read a blog post (wink wink), or spending 10 minutes in the sunshine. This week, pick one thing you can do for yourself. Looking after yourself this week will give you more energy to be able to care for your children. If I can support you in creating time for yourself Contact me here or would like to book a Massage, Book online now.

Does a Massage Need To Hurt?

Does a Massage Need To Hurt?

This is another wonderful question I receive from clients and potential clients regularly. Does a Massage need to hurt to be beneficial?  Whether a Remedial Massage will hurt does depend on your pain threshold but it will also depend on the communication between yourself and your Remedial Massage Therapist. At times a Remedial Massage will be uncomfortable, especially if you are there to treat an injury, however you should never be in excrutiating pain or walk out in more pain than you walked in.  As a Remedial Massage Therapist, I am responsible for communicating with you to ensure that the pressure that I am applying is within your pain limitations. I will ask you throughout the treatment if the pressure is enough, too much or manageable. It is never my aim to put you through pain to achieve a positive result. My theory is that if I inflict pain on you as my client, you will tense the muscles that I am working to relax therefore it would be working against the effect I am trying to create. Through slow, deep breathing you can cope with painful areas that require some specific work but you will not be asked to deal with this for a long period of time.  At the end of the session you should walk out relaxed and have relief from pain. If I haven’t made you feel better, please speak up. I may advise stretches or application or heat to continue at home. You may require another treatment or your problem may require referral to a Physiotherapist, Osteopath or other Health Practitioner.  If you have experiences excruciating pain in the past and have avoided Remedial Massage, please speak to me and I can assure you that you will not experience the same again. Contact me to book an appointment or send me an email with your questions: [email protected]