Improved muscle recovery
Release stress and tension held in muscles
Soothe muscle pain
Promote blood-flow and circulation
Melt muscle tension fast
Hot stones access muscle tissue on a deeper level and lets you get similar benefits to deep tissue massage, loosening up muscles so they can be accessed with more comfort.
Who may benefit from a hot stone massage?
Anyone who is experiencing muscle tension and pain, insomnia, or stress may benefit from a hot stone massage. If you have a chronic condition that causes pain, talk to your doctor to see if a hot stone massage is a good option for you.
What happens during a hot stone massage?
A hot stone massage is a powerful, deep-penetrating type of therapy. It’s an extra tool used to relax and ease tense muscles and damaged soft tissues throughout the body.
During a hot stone massage, smooth, flat, heated stones may be placed on specific parts of your body, or moved throughout the body during massage strokes. The stones are usually made of basalt, a type of volcanic rock that retains heat. Hot massage stones are heated to between 130 and 145 degrees Fahrenheit.
Massage therapists may hold heated stones as they massage your body using Swedish massage techniques such as gliding strokes, circular movements, kneading, etc. The stones may be placed along your spine, on your stomach, chest, face, palms, feet, and toes.
Top 10 benefits of hot stone massage
1. It’s comforting and relaxing
Think of the pleasure of being made warm by a fireside on a chilly day and you’ll understand why the heat of the hot stones is so comforting and relaxing. It’s like being deeply embraced, right into your soul. It just feels like you’re ‘home’.
2. The heat aids depth
With the hot stones, one of the major benefits is that the heat from the stones penetrates your body, bringing many of the benefits of massage at a deeper level. It allows intense muscle relaxation which enables the massage therapist to actually work very deeply, without the same pressure that they would need to apply in a deep tissue massage.
3. Relief from tension and pain
Heat is a well-known natural pain reliever. If tension is behind an ache or pain, then heat can be enormously effective at releasing the tension and thus easing the pain. This is believed to be because when heat is applied to an area, the blood flow to that region increases. It can help alleviate spasms and enable a joint or muscles to be gently flexed and regain movement and mobility.
4. Relief from stress and anxiety
Massage, including hot stone massage, has been scientifically proven to reduce stress and anxiety. It’s actually fascinating to learn why this is. Lots of processes are stimulated by massage. Endorphins and other feel-good hormones are released which reduce stress and anxiety. At the same time, the ‘stress’ hormones, such as norepinephrine and cortisol, are lowered.
5. Aids sleep
Just one of the huge benefits of having a hot stone massage is that it will help ease you into deeper restful and restorative sleep. It certainly seems to promote good sleep in everyone we know!
6. Immune boosting
Many of the techniques used in a Swedish massage are also used in hot stone massage. Quite remarkably, Swedish massage has been shown to positively impact your immune system, even after just one session. Knowing that you can boost your immunity simply by being pampered and massaged is wonderful to know!
7. Managing chronic pain
For those with chronic pain conditions, such as Fibromyalgia and Rheumatoid Arthritis, hot stone massage has been shown to bring tangible positive effects.
8. Cancer management
Swedish massage, which is incorporated into hot stone massage, has been shown to really help cancer patients manage the symptoms of their disease. From less nausea and depression, to reduced pain and fatigue, it would appear that a caring massage can really help individuals to alleviate some of their cancer symptoms.
9. Draw out toxins
Many practitioners of hot stone massage believe that one of the real benefits of this type of massage is its ability to draw toxins to the surface of the skin, and eliminate them through the body’s natural sweating process. This leads to a wonderful radiant glow.
Whether it’s due to the balance of energy flow, or some other lesser understood process in the body and mind, a hot stone massage can restore balance and many feel it helps with self-healing.
Surrender to the sensation
Recovery goes beyond the physical level. Hot stone massage therapy has been shown to reduce the sympathetic activity responsible for our fight or flight response. The result is an unencumbered sense of calm and relaxation.