If you’ve ever gone for a massage you know how relaxing it can be and how amazing your muscles can feel afterwards. Many of us go for massages to undo the knots in our muscles, but did you know that the benefits of a massage can span way beyond relieving muscle stiffness and aches?
Once you discover these benefits, you will surely want to get massages more regularly for your good health.
Benefits of a massage
Preliminary findings of a study at Emory University in Atlanta suggest that even a short 15-minute massage is enough to promote overall wellbeing. The benefits of massages included:
Aches and pain relief: Massages were found to reduce inflammation caused by overuse of muscles and this way reduce stiffness and pain.
Lower risk of illness: Releasing knots in muscles and tissues can give your immune system a boost. This is because massages help promote circulation of white blood cells which help fight illness.
Natural painkiller: Instead of taking over-the-counter painkillers, go for a rub. Massages help release more serotonin in the body, making you feel good.
Brain function boost: A short massage is enough to boost brain power by heightening alertness. In one study, participants were able to solve math equations much quicker after receiving a 15-minute massage.
Improved sleep: Because massages boost serotonin which promotes relaxation, receiving a massage can promote calmness and in turn help you sleep better.
Reduced stress and anxiety: Not only do massages reduce tension in the muscles, but the hand strokes used in many techniques help stimulate the nervous system, promoting calmness and reducing stress. The ambience of a massage in the darker room, with calming music and lightly fragranced oils only adds to relaxation.
Improved headaches: If you go for a massage of the neck and head region, you may find that your pounding headaches go away. Massages in this area help improve vagal activity, which has been found to reduce headaches and migraines.
Although you may not be able to go for daily or even weekly massages, scheduling an appointment at least once a month is doable. Especially given the fact that many studies claim that all you need is about 15 minutes to start experiencing benefits to your overall health.