Holistic Therapies and Massage
Indian Head - Swedish Massage - Lava Shells
Indian Head Massage
Indian Head Massage is a relaxing treatment which, as the name suggests, concentrates on massaging the head. Head and scalp massage can be used alongside simple meditative techniques to provide a simple and effective way to relax.
A Brief History of Indian Head Massage
The Hindi word for head massage is "Champi" and aspects of the treatment have a long tradition in Indian families. Mothers would stroke their daughter's hair to promote its growth and health.
How does Indian Head Massage work?
The treatments involves massage, shiatsu and acupressure techniques on upper back, shoulders, arms/hands, neck, scalp and face. This relaxes tense areas but, at the same time, helps to rebalance the energy, clearing any areas of negativity.
What is Indian Head Massage used for?
Indian Head massage may bring about:
- General feeling of wellbeing, calmness and relaxation
- Dispersal of toxins from tense, knotted muscles
- Stimulation and improvement of circulatory and lymphatic systems
- Improvement of joint mobility
- Higher levels of alertness and concentration
Swedish massage is the most commonly offered and best known type of massage. It was developed by a Swedish physiologist, Henri Peter Ling at the University of Stockholm in 1812. It uses a firm but gentle pressue to improve the circulation, ease muscle aches and tension, improve flexibility and create relaxation.
Swedish massage employs five different movements:
The five basic massage strokes associated with traditional Swedish massage are:
- effleurage (gliding strokes)
- petrissage (kneading and compression strokes)
- friction (deep circular rubbing)
- tapotement (percussion tapping, pounding)
- vibration (very fine, rapid shaking)
The therapist generally uses massage oil to facilitate making long, smooth strokes over the body. Swedish massage is done with the person covered by a sheet, a technique called "draping". One part of the body uncovered, massaged, and then covered up before moving on to another part of the body.
Lava Shells: A new inivative way to massage using heat. A must to try.
Lava Shell massage is similar to Hot Stone Massage. Instead of stones, the therapist will use between one and four heated Tiger Striped Clam shells from the Philippines to massage your body. The therapist can use different parts of these pretty shells to complement various massage strokes. The knob on the back of the shell can be used to work away at tight knots. The smooth surface of the shell is ideal for applying gentle pressure to calves and arms, and you might feel the therapist using the narrow edge of the Lava Shell to work around tense shoulder blades or between your toes.
How are the shells heated?
Each Lava Shell has a rubber cap on the bottom. The therapist inserts a sachet of algae, minerals and dried sea kelp into the shell, and adds an activator liquid. The chemical reaction between the activator and the "Lava Gel" sachet creates heat that can last up to a couple of hours.
Who would enjoy a Lava Shell massage?
Anyone with tense muscles -- the heat from the Lava Shells will gently relax and smooth away those knots. The shells naturally give off calcium ions when heated, which transfer to your skin during the massage. Calcium can help to firm and regenerate the skin -- a nice bonus.
Where do all those shells come from?
Is this treatment bad for the environment?
Lava Shell massage is being billed its creators Spa Revolutions as an "eco-friendly" treatment. Tiger Striped Clams have been harvested for food in the Philippines for hundreds of years. The shells used to be thrown away but are now being recycled as a massage tool. Green Brownie points for that, but we do think it's a little cheeky to call this treatment "eco-friendly" when the shells are being heated by single-use disposable sachets.