Massage therapy provides so many benefits and knowing all the different types of massage therapy is important. In this article, Massage Lee’s Summit dives into the difference between therapeutic massage and relaxation massage. The type of massage that you receive can help you with many different aspects of the pain that you are suffering from. It also helps to choose a professional masseuse that knows exactly what they are doing. For some, therapeutic massage is going to provide the best results. Here is an overview of what this type of massage method actually does and why you should consider scheduling an appointment with Massage Lee’s Summit

What is a therapeutic massage?

A therapeutic massage relieves muscle soreness and aches through kneading and the manipulation of soft tissues and muscles. Therapeutic massage techniques incorporate parts of massage therapies including sports massage, deep tissue massage, and Swedish massage.

What Are The Health Benefits Of Therapeutic Massage?  

There are both basic and advanced benefits to getting treatments in the form of therapeutic massage. At the very least, it’s going to help you reduce the stress that you are feeling. There is a direct connection between the way that your body feels and how your mind is able to process information. By relaxing your body, you can reduce anxiety, diminish fear, and at the same time ease muscle tension. You may notice that your ability to sleep will improve, and also your ability to relax and avoid muscle and joint pain that you are constantly feeling. Many also experience depression, and this can see a definitive improvement by receiving therapeutic massage regularly. You can strengthen your lower back by having this type of massage done regularly, or at least every time that you feel discomfort in the lower back area.

benefits of therapeutic massage

What is Relaxation Massage?

Relaxation massage is a therapy focused on relieving the client’s everyday stress. Relaxation massage treatment includes deeply relaxing pressure designed to soothe you, not treat chronic pain or muscle aches. A relaxation massage appointment often includes essential oils, soothing music, and warm towels.

What are the health benefits of relaxation massage?

Relaxation massage offers many different health benefits, especially when you schedule regular, consistent appointments. Benefits of relaxation massage therapy include lowered blood pressure, better peripheral circulation, and gastrointestinal motility. Tension headaches and stress are also known to decrease after a relaxation massage.

difference between therapeutic and relaxation massage

Therapeutic Massage vs. Relaxation Massage

A relaxation massage is a more casual type of massage than a therapeutic type of massage. Relaxation massage therapy’s primary focus is to improve your range of motion, reduce anxiety, and minimize tension throughout your body. Therapeutic massage, on the other hand, has many different facets. This includes neuromuscular, myofascial, trigger point, and the very popular sports massage strategies. This is something that you will likely receive from a professional that has the proper training and tools to address very specific areas of your body that are injured or under stress. Therefore, the primary difference is that one is designed to help you relax whereas the other is designed for helping you to recover from muscular problems that you are currently facing. 

Structural Changes That May Occur Through Regular Massage Practices

Regular therapeutic massage practices can cause structural changes including the realignment of the spine. In some cases, the reason for the misalignment is tension in the back muscles that surround this area of your body. By relaxing the muscles, and also stretching, you can minimize the effects of how your spine will react to events in your life or physical tasks that you do daily. Although deep tissue massage is very important, there is one other focus that may prove to be more beneficial. These are called soft tissue manipulations. By massaging your body in a certain way, using these techniques, you can see dramatic improvements in your mindset, the way that you feel, and a definite improvement in your mobility.

types of massage therapies

An Overview Of Soft Tissue Manipulations

Soft tissue manipulation is a very specific type of massage technique. The reason that you would want this type of treatment is to relax parts of your body that are stiff. Stiff muscles can lead to poor circulation throughout your body, and also the development of tension. Soft tissue manipulations include effleurage, petrissage, friction, and tapotement massage techniques. The effleurage technique involves gliding and sweeping strokes that are long, performed primarily by the palms of your hands or a closed fist. The petrissage technique is reminiscent of kneading dough or perhaps wringing out a towel, in order to get the result you are striving for. Friction can be done by many parts of the body that will generate heat. Finally, the tapotement technique focuses on the rhythm of the stimulation, helping to improve circulation, nerve conductivity, and the stimulation of the muscles. This is usually administered with flat palms or sometimes cupped hands, and some practitioners may also interlock their fingers together. 

All of these relate to what is called Swedish massage techniques that are designed to truly penetrate deeper into the muscles to affect a much greater and positive change. Developed by European medical doctor Johann Mezger, these techniques are just as popular today as they were when they were first created. The primary difference is that modern assessments and machinery are now used in conjunction with these very specific types of massage. If your goal is to become more fluid and agile, or if you simply want to reduce your pain levels, these techniques can be very beneficial.


Now that you know the many benefits of therapeutic massage, and how these techniques are implemented, you may want to consider speaking with a professional. It is recommended that you try one particular technique at a time to see if there is a decisive change in the way that you feel. If there is not, your masseuse will then move on to something else and monitor whether the changes are positive or negative. As long as you are working with a certified masseuse, or a physical therapist, you should see noticeable changes that can help you live a much better life from a physical and mental standpoint. Schedule an appointment at Massage Lee’s Summit today!