Need a Shoulder Rub?

If you’re as stressed out as I am right now you’ll understand what I mean when I grumble “I need a massage.” I happen to be a person who holds all of my stress in my back and neck. I can literally feel more knots forming when I have to add something new to my To Do list. For me, nothing eliminates stress better than a massage. When I finally get a break I’ll head straight to the local spa (thankfully they have student rates that I can afford on my meager student-worker salary) and book an appointment. Now, some people may view massage therapy as a ridiculously expensive luxury that no down to earth women would ever waste her money on. 

Well, they’re wrong. 

While they continue on in life being up tight and stingy, I’ll be spending 45 minutes reenergizing my body and unwinding my mind. Massage should be an integral part of any woman’s lifestyle. I don’t care if it’s once a month, or once a year. But do yourself a favor and book an appointment. It will change your life. 

But why??? You may ask.

Here’s the research – according to the Mayo Clinic,

“Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate that it is an effective treatment for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension.

Some studies have found massage may also be helpful for:

  • Anxiety
  • Digestive disorders
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia related to stress
  • Myofascial pain syndrome
  • Paresthesias and nerve pain
  • Soft tissue strains or injuries
  • Sports injuries
  • Temporomandibular joint pain

Beyond the benefits for specific conditions or diseases, some people enjoy massage because it often involves caring, comfort, and provides a sense of empowerment.”

Taking time for yourself feels good, and makes you better. Other studies go own to state that regularly schedules massage sessions can 

  • increase circulation
  • enhance the immune system
  • promote nervous system functioning
  • reduce blood pressure
  • relieve pain and muscle tension
  • improve mood, intellectual reasoning and job performance

That sounds pretty good to me. Certain insurance companies will even cover regular massage appointments if you meet certain qualifications – and it doesn’t get any better than a “free” massage. My recommendation is aromatherapy massages at a spa that employs reputable massage therapists. If you still don’t think you can afford a spa treatment, then get someone you trust to give you a 20 minute back massage, and do the same for them. Or, invest in a foam roller and roll out your sore muscles regularly (this is an old ballet trick and hurts at first but feels great afterwards). 

The point is that we all sometimes need help releasing tension, and massage is probably the best way to do so. It sure beats chewing out your boss or yelling at your family. 

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