A lot of people have heard about hot stone massage therapy, but don’t know if it’s right for them. This article will explain the benefits of hot stone therapy and what happens during a typical massage.
What is a Hot Stone Massage Therapy?
In Hot Stone Massage Therapy, heated smooth, flat stones are placed on key points on the body. The massage therapist may also hold the stones and use them to massage certain areas of the body.
How Does Hot Stone Massage Work?
The hot stones are usually made of basalt, a type of rock that is rich in iron, so they retain heat. River rocks are normally used because they are so smooth – they have been smoothed over time by the river’s current.
The stones are immersed in water and heated until they are within a certain temperature range. The stones are placed at specific points on the back, in the palms of the hand,or between the toes.
The heat warms and relaxes the muscles, which allows the therapist to apply deeper pressure.
The warmth of the hot stones improves circulation and calms the nervous system. Some massage therapists place stones on points that are thought to be energy centers of the body to re-balance the body and mind.
What Can I Expect During a Hot Stone Massage?
The massage therapist often begins by applying oil to the body, which allows the hot stones to glide smoothly along the muscles. Typically you are lying face down, and the massage therapist often uses the hot stones to massage the back. After the hot stones have relaxed the muscles, the massage therapist usually puts down the stones and use his or her hands to directly massage the skin.