What Are the Different Types of Massages?

What is a massage?

There are numerous types of massage that focus on various parts of the body or healing methods. Massage is the practice of rubbing and kneading the body using the hands. During a massage, a massage therapist will apply gentle or strong pressure to the muscles and joints of the body to alleviate pain and tension. A massage therapist is a person trained in providing massages.

Continue reading to learn more about the different types of massage and which type might be right for you.

1. Swedish massage

Swedish massage is a gentle kind of full-body massage that’s ideal for people who:

are new to massage

have a great deal of tension

are sensitive to touch

It can help launch muscle knots, and it’s likewise a great option for when you wish to totally unwind during a massage.

For this massage, you’ll remove your clothing, though you might pick to keep your underclothing on. You’ll be covered with a sheet while lying on the massage table. The massage therapist will move the sheet to uncover locations that they are actively dealing with.

The massage therapist will use a combination of:


long, flowing strokes in the instructions of the heart

deep circular movements

vibration and tapping

passive joint motion techniques

Usually a Swedish massage will last for 60– 90 minutes.


Pick a Swedish massage for relaxation or managing small pain.

This type of massage is also helpful for people new to massage

2. Hot stone massage.

Hot stone massage is best for individuals who have muscle pain and tension or who just wish to unwind. This type of healing massage resembles a Swedish massage, just the massage therapist utilizes heated stones in lieu of or in addition to their hands. It eases muscle tension, improves blood flow, and eases pain by utilizing heated stones. Hot stone massage may assist:

ease muscle tension

enhance blood flow

minimize pain

promote relaxation

alleviate stress

During a hot stone massage, heated stones are placed on various locations around your entire body. Your therapist may hold a stone as they massage various parts of your body using Swedish massage strategies utilizing gentle pressure. Sometimes cold stones are likewise used.

You don’t use clothes for hot stone massage unless you’ll feel more comfy using your underwear. You will be covered with a sheet. Generally the massage is 90 minutes long.


Hot stone massage may ease more muscle stress than a Swedish massage due to the fact that of the included heat.

This type of massage in generally more expensive than a Swedish massage

3. Aromatherapy massage.

Aromatherapy massages are best for people who desire to have an emotional healing part to their massage. This kind of massage can help:

enhance your mood

reduce stress and stress and anxiety

minimize signs of anxiety

relieve muscle stress

eliminate pain

Aromatherapy massages combine soft, gentle pressure with the usage of important oils. Your massage therapist will usually choose which important oils to use, however you can let them know if you have a preference. Necessary oils are diluted before being applied to the skin.

Throughout the massage, you’ll be provided a full-body massage while breathing in important oils through a diffuser and absorbing them through your skin. In some cases an aromatherapy massage will only concentrate on your back, shoulders, and head. You won’t use any clothes aside from underclothing, which is optional.

An aromatherapy massage is 60– 90 minutes.


Aromatherapy integrates the mild touches of Swedish massage with the addition of important oils.

Do not utilize this type of massage if you’re delicate to smell or vital oils.

4. Deep tissue massage

Deep tissue massage utilizes more pressure than a Swedish massage. It’s a great choice if you have persistent muscle problems, such as discomfort, injury, or imbalance. It can help alleviate tight muscles, chronic muscle pain, and anxiety.

Throughout a deep tissue massage, your massage therapist will use sluggish strokes and deep finger pressure to alleviate tension from the inmost layers of your muscles and connective tissues. You can be naked during this massage or use your underwear.

The massage will last for 60– 90 minutes.

While deep tissue may be more extreme, you shouldn’t feel any discomfort or discomfort.


Deep tissue massage is a great choice if you have a great deal of muscle stress or chronic pain.

Avoid this kind of massage if you’re excessively delicate to pressure.

5. Sports massage

Sports massage is a great option if you have a recurring usage injury to a muscle, such as what you might receive from playing a sport. It’s likewise a good choice if you’re susceptible to injuries due to the fact that it can be utilized to help avoid sports injuries. You may likewise use sports massage to increase versatility and performance. Additionally, sports massage can be used to eliminate discomfort, stress and anxiety, and muscle tension.

A sports massage can be done as a full-body massage or the massage therapist may focus on the parts of the body that need the most attention. Deep pressure might be alternated with relaxing strokes depending upon your requirements.

You can have a sports massage while clothed or naked. If you choose to wear clothing, make certain it’s thin, loose, and allows the therapist access to your muscles. Loose shorts and a tank top are options.

The massage will last for 60– 90 minutes.


Sports massage is an excellent option if you have an injury from recurring muscle use.

This kind of massage may also help enhance flexibility and sports efficiency, and lower your danger for injury.

6. Trigger point massage

Trigger point massages are best matched for people who have injuries, persistent pain, or a specific concern or condition. Sometimes locations of tightness in the muscle tissues, referred to as trigger points, can trigger discomfort in other parts of the body. By focusing on easing trigger points, this kind of massage can reduce pain.

Trigger point massage uses broad, flowing strokes that are mild and relaxing integrated with stronger, much deeper pressure. The massage will consist of deal with your entire body, though your therapist will concentrate on specific areas of your body that requirement to be released. You can use lightweight clothing for the massage or be completely or partly undressed.

This type of massage will usually last for 60– 90 minutes.


Trigger point massage can assist you manage persistent pain.

Use lightweight clothes for this kind of massage.

7. Reflexology

Reflexology is finest for individuals who are seeking to relax or restore their natural energy levels. It’s also an excellent choice if you aren’t comfy being touched on your whole body. Reflexology uses mild to firm pressure on different pressure points of the feet, hands, and ears. You can wear loose, comfortable clothing that allows access to your legs.

A reflexology massage lasts for 30– 60 minutes.


Reflexology focuses on pressure points in your feet, hands, and ears.

This is a great alternative if you’re uncomfortable being touched over your whole body. You can likewise be completely outfitted throughout this type of massage

8. Shiatsu massage.

Shiatsu massage is best for people who wish to feel relaxed and relieve tension, discomfort, and stress. It’s a Japanese kind of massage that:

promotes psychological and physical calm and relaxation

helps to ease tension, anxiety, and depression

may alleviate headache

decreases muscle stress

Shiatsu massage works the entire body, however your therapist may concentrate on locations of your body that need extra attention. During the massage, your therapist will utilize their hands, palms, and thumbs to massage particular points of your body. Pulsing or rhythmic pressure is used. You can be completely outfitted throughout this massage.

Shiatsu massages normally last for 60– 90 minutes.


Shiatsu is an excellent alternative if you’re searching for a relaxing massage It may also help release minor stress.

You can be totally dressed during this type of massage.

9. Thai massage.

Thai massage is best for people who want a more active form of massage and desire to lower and eliminate discomfort and stress. It can also assist improve:



energy levels

Thai massage works the whole body using a series of motions that are comparable to yogic stretching. Your therapist will use their palms and fingers to use firm pressure to your body. You’ll likewise be extended and twisted into different positions. You can wear loose, comfy clothing throughout the massage.

Thai massage lasts for 60– 90 minutes.


Thai massage is more active than other kinds of massage, and the therapist will stretch your body in addition to offering a massage

This is another kind of massage where you stay fully dressed.

10. Prenatal massage.

Prenatal massage can be a safe way for ladies to get a massage throughout pregnancy. It can help in reducing pregnancy body aches, minimize stress, and ease muscle stress. You can get a massage at any time throughout your pregnancy. However, many facilities, especially in the United States, do not use massages to females in their very first trimester due to the threat of miscarriage during this time.

Prenatal massage utilizes moderate pressure comparable to Swedish massage. The therapist will focus on locations such as your lower back, hips, and legs. You can be completely or partially undressed depending on your comfort level. Throughout the massage, you’ll either lie on your side or on a specifically developed table with a cutout for your tummy. If you’ve had discomfort in your calves or other parts of your leg, see a medical professional before you have a massage.

The massage will last for 45– 60 minutes.


Prenatal massage is a great alternative for pregnant ladies.

This kind of massage focuses on gentle pressure and benefits relaxation and moderate tension relief.

11. Couple’s massage

A couple’s massage is a massage that you finish with your partner, good friend, or member of the family in the very same room. It brings all the advantages of a regular massage and sometimes supplies you with access to the spa’s jacuzzis, saunas, and other centers. Other treatments such as pedicures, facials, and body scrubs are in some cases used as part of a package.

You can generally pick which type of massage you ‘d like to get, and you and your partner can each get a various kind of massage depending upon your preference and the offerings at the spa. Your partner and you will be on tables side-by-side, and you’ll each have your own massage therapist dealing with your body. You can talk throughout the massage if you want.


A couple’s massage is a massage you have in a shared room with a buddy, partner, or relative.

You can usually select from a variety of types of massages to have throughout your visit. Swedish and hot stone massages are commonly used as an alternative throughout a couple’s massage

12. Chair massage.

A chair massage is best for individuals who desire a fast massage that concentrates on your neck, shoulders, and back. A chair massage can also be a method to present you to massage if you’ve never ever had one before. Chair massage likewise helps to ease tension and promote relaxation. This kind of massage uses light to medium pressure.

During the massage, you’ll stay completely outfitted and sit in a specifically designed chair. You’ll straddle the chair so that your chest presses into the back of the chair, enabling the massage therapist to have access to your back.

These massages are normally 10– 30 minutes.


A chair massage is an excellent alternative if you’re brief on time.

This type of massage is also a great alternative if you’re brand-new to massage.

How to discover a massage therapist

You can get an individual recommendation for a massage therapist from a physician, friend, or an online directory site. Or you can book a few massages with various therapists to see which one you choose. Make certain it’s somebody with whom you feel comfy so that you can totally relax.

Ensure your massage therapist s appropriately trained and has certificates and state licenses that are updated. You may want to have a short discussion with your therapist prior to beginning your sessions so that you can interact your expectations and ask any appropriate concerns.

How much does a massage expense?

Rates differ greatly for massages in the United States. An hourlong massage is normally $50–$ 150. Many therapists will anticipate a 15– 20 percent pointer on top of this. Nevertheless, some places do not accept gratuity.

Aromatherapy, hot stone, and prenatal massages tend to be more pricey than basic massages. Depending on the location, some specialty massages such as deep massage tissue, Thai, or sports massages may run a bit greater, too.

You can have a look at a massage school in your location or discover a massage therapist who works at home if you want to discover massages at a more sensible cost.

Insurance sometimes covers massage treatment if you can reveal it’s being used to deal with a medical condition. Sometimes insurance business will cover massage therapy if it belongs to chiropractic care.

The takeaway

Massage may be a method for you to feel much better physically, psychologically, and emotionally. Explore various kinds of massage and with different massage therapists to discover the type and provider that is most ideal for you.

Constantly interact your expectations and objectives with your massage therapist and speak up if there is something with which you aren’t comfy. Speak with your physician prior to getting any kind of massage if you have any health concerns or conditions

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