Deep tissue massage is designed to relieve severe tension in the muscle and the connective tissue or fascia. This type of massage focuses on the muscles located below the surface of the top muscles.
Deep tissue massage is often recommended for individuals who experience consistent pain, are involved in heavy physical activity (such as athletes), and patients who have sustained physical injury.
When there is chronic muscle tension or injury, there are usually adhesions (bands of painful, rigid tissue) in muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
Adhesions can block circulation and cause pain, limited movement, and inflammation.
Deep tissue massage works by physically breaking down these adhesions to relieve pain and restore normal movement. To do this, the massage therapist often uses direct deep pressure or friction applied across the grain of the muscles.
At certain points during the massage, most people find there is usually some discomfort and pain.
It is important to tell the massage therapist when things hurt and if any soreness or pain you ecperience is outside your comfort range.
There is usually some stiffness or pain after a deep tissue massage, but it should subside within a day or so.
Unlike classic massage therapy, which is used for relaxation, deep tissue massage usually focuses on a specific problem.
The term “deep tissue” is often misused to identify a massage that is performed with sustained deep pressure.
Deep tissue massage is a separate category of massage therapy, used to treat particular muscular-skeletal disorders and complaints and employs a dedicated set of techniques and strokes to achieve a measure of relief. It should not be confused with “deep pressure” massage, which is one that is performed with sustained strong, occasionally intense pressure throughout an entire full-body session, and that is not performed to address a specific complaint.
Deep tissue massage is applied to both the superficial and deep layers of muscles, fascia, and other structures. The sessions are often quite intense as a result of the deliberate, focused work.
When a client asks for a massage and uses the term “deep tissue”, more often than not he or she is seeking to receive a full-body session with sustained deep pressure throughout.
If a practitioner employs deep tissue techniques on the entire body in one session, it would be next to impossible to perform; it might lead to injury or localized muscle and nerve trauma, thereby rendering the session counterproductive.