Why is a Swedish massage necessary

Classic massage

5. Application

The classic massage includes five types of grip:

  • Stroking (Effleurage): Is perceived by many as pleasant and relaxing. Strokes are carried out with both hands towards the heart and serve the masseur to establish contact with the patient and to detect tension. Strokes are particularly suitable at the beginning of the massage to get used to and to distribute the ointment or massage oil.

  • Kneading (Petrissage): S-shaped kneading movements of a muscle group from distal (further away from the body) to proximal (closer to the body) body regions are called kneading. The individual muscle groups are grasped with thumbs and fingertips and, alternately, the hands are pushed against each other and rotated. Kneading takes place in the direction of the muscle, relieves skin and muscle tension, improves blood circulation, promotes the removal of metabolic products and relaxes the muscles - depending on the execution and intensity of the grips. When doing kneading, it is important that the muscle is grasped as a whole, otherwise it would only slip over the skin.

  • Rubbing (friction): Friction is usually done with the ball of the hand with strong, increasing and decreasing pressure. This treatment can heat the muscle and loosen adhesions (myogelosis = tangible, hard knots in the muscle tissue).

  • Tapping (tapotement): By tapping lightly with a loose hand, blood flow to the deep muscles is promoted and the nervous system is stimulated at the same time. Gentle tapping has a muscle-relaxing effect. Tapping hard has a stimulating effect and is more likely to be used in sports massage. Gentle taps are performed on the face with the fingertips.

  • Shaking (vibration): Shaking is performed with the fingertips or the palm of the hand. Fast and fine hand movements should trigger a lasting mental and physical relaxation. They can help relieve stomach and intestinal cramps in the abdomen. Vibration technology is considered difficult to learn.

6. Self-treatment

Medical massages that are performed for healing purposes (for example after accidents or diseases of the musculoskeletal system) must be preceded by an examination by a specialist and / or a doctor's prescription must be available. This is not necessary for massages that are intended to improve well-being: self or partner massages are beneficial and pleasant. Most of the time, the correct massage is intuitive. If you are unsure, you can ask the druggist for advice. The drugstore offers a wide range of products (such as massage oil, essential oils, ointments, etc.) and devices (such as massage balls, brushes, gloves, etc.) for self-treatment. If you want to know more, you can browse one of the countless massage books or attend a class for classic massage. Both are available for both partner and self-massage.

7. Users and their training

The Swiss Association of Professional Masseurs has the addresses of registered professional masseurs.

8. Treatment and procedure

Individual massage sessions are combined into a series of at least six treatments (twice a week). Different massage durations are recommended for the different areas of the body. A partial massage (head, feet, hands) takes about ten minutes. A massage of large parts of the body (arms, legs, back) takes around twenty minutes. A full body massage takes 45 minutes. The classic massage is primarily used to prevent and treat tension in the muscles. The massage also promotes general relaxation and increases wellbeing. The most common complaints that lead someone to a masseur are: back pain, headache (caused by tense neck muscles), muscle hardening (after physical overexertion) and restricted mobility (e.g. caused by shortened muscles).

9. Limits and Risks

No side effects are expected after a knowledgeable massage. But there are also contraindications to massage that must be observed. For the following diseases, the classic massage should not be used or only after consultation with a medical specialist: vascular diseases, acute inflammations and infectious diseases, cancer, high fever, cardiovascular problems, diseases of the muscles and nerves, tendency to bleed, venous disorders.

10. Practical tips

Skin-friendly base oils - also enriched with essential oils - allow the hands to glide better on the skin during the massage. Tip from Amin Fischer, a qualified druggist in Tägerwilen: “Have an individual massage oil mixed in the drugstore or make a fine massage cream yourself. It is worth trying. "

11. Does the health insurance company pay?

Many health insurances make a contribution to the treatment costs as part of their supplementary insurance, provided that therapists are recognized. You can get more information directly from your health insurance company.

Author and editor: Nadja Mühlemann
  • Swiss association of professional masseurs