Massage by David Cox's Blog

Benefits of Massage

September 26th, 2012 • Posted by David Cox • Permalink

A recent article published by NIH suggests that research is beginning to show that the benefits of massage go much further than just relaxation. Other common reasons for getting a massage include relieving pain, healing sports injuries, reducing stress, and easing anxiety or depression. According to a study from the University of Miami, massage therapy has been shown to relax the nervous system by slowing a person’s heart rate and blood pressure. It also decreases stress and pain hormones, which can reduce pain and enhance immune functions. If you’d like to read more visit: http://newsinhealth.nih.gov/issue/Jul2012

Let me know how I can help you feel better!

 

Massage by Davic Cox Has Moved!

August 26th, 2012 • Posted by David Cox • Permalink

Massage by David Cox is now located at 4701 Randolph Road, Suite G 09, Rockville, MD 20852. You can still reach David at 301.996.2799 and massagebydavidcox@verizon.net.

You'll love our new space! Hope to see you soon!

 

Who Needs a Top 10 When You Have 11!

June 23rd, 2012 • Posted by David Cox • Permalink

I came across this great article on yahoo.com when surfing the other day. I could not agree more! Have you scheduled your next massage?

Read on...

Massage therapy has been used as a therapeutic measure for generations, and across cultures around the world. Although different types of massage techniques are designed to target specific areas, dysfunctions, and promote natural healing processes, there are some distinctive benefits that can be received from regular massage. Physical benefits range from improved circulation, lower stress levels, and increased flexibility in tense muscles. Mental benefits include a calm mind, increased awareness, better focus and concentration, and increased alertness. Here are the top ten physical and mental health benefits of massage.

1. Promotes deeper breathing

-deep breathing is vital to ensure that oxygen circulates easily throughout your body, and encourages healing and growth in the process. Decreased oxygen circulation results in headaches, tension aches, and random muscle pain that can accumulate into a significant problem over time. By enhancing your oxygen intake, you will naturally promote the release of toxins and negative energy within the body.

2. Improves posture

-although massage should never be used as a replacement for a chiropractic diagnosis, posture can slowly and naturally improve as the spine and muscles around the spine become more flexible and supple. Improved posture also aids in breathing and less tension throughout the body.

3. Improves circulation

-an improvement in both blood and lymph circulation helps your body gain strength and maximizes your energy level. Especially during the winter months when circulation and metabolisms may be slower, massage can help in removing toxins in the blood and encouraging fresh energy to circulate easily. Efficient circulation also helps in muscle recovery, growth, and promotes the natural healing process.

4. Enhances skin tone and skin health

-when using high-quality oils and creams, massage therapists can significantly improve the tone and health of your skin after just a few massage sessions. Skin cells are revitalized, moisturized, and replenished naturally. Choose Vitamin E and natural grapeseed oil bases for maximum benefits.

5. Increases and promotes joint flexibility

-repetitive stress or overused joints can stunt growth and create problems later. Massage helps to relieve stored tension and encourages flexibility of the joints after rest. Any soreness experienced after a massage can be indication that these are tension spots for you, and focusing on these areas on your next massage will increase joint recovery. There are even some special oil formulations to target joints, so do check with your massage therapist beforehand to discuss options.

6. Enhances a calm mind

-encouraging a calm mind creates an avenue for creativity; it is during these times that our minds are most conducive to creative thinking, developing plans, organizing thoughts, and reducing stressful thoughts. Massage can encourage this state of mind by relaxing the entire body.

7. Reduces anxiety

-as a natural deep relaxant, a successful massage can significantly reduce anxiety. Usually, anxiety is stored in some key areas of the body; the lower back, shoulders, abdomen, and neck. By relieving these areas of tension, the mind can 'let go' of anxiety and experience a light, almost freeing sensation.

8. Increases self-awareness

-the mind-body connection is often overlooked in today's fast-paced society. From the minute you wake up, to the moment you go to bed, it is easy to slip into 'mind-only' mode. When you re-establish the connection with your body, you will experience greater ease of movement, a more centered feeling, and an enhanced feeling of well-being.

9. Promotes mental alertness

-although a massage can bring you into a state of deep relaxation, this is also a state of heightened mental alertness. Your mind is relaxed and calm, but acutely aware and in this state, capable of solving even the toughest problems!

10. Increases peace of mind

-with your ability to feel relaxed and naturally aware, peace of mind becomes a necessary result. Peace of mind can be defined as a sense of calm well-being and just feeling good naturally.

11. Satisfies need for human touch

-as human beings, we all need to feel the touch of another human being. This can range from a simple hug, handshake, or a nurturing touch. A massage encourages this type of connection and increases your appreciation for this human need.  

 

The Benefits of Summer Massage & Hydration

May 30th, 2012 • Posted by David Cox • Permalink

Recently I read an article about massage therapy during summer months. The article highlighted how much more active we become when the weather warms up and why massage and hydration are important. I could not agree more! When the weather warms up we’re making gardens, weeding, mowing – staying much more active after many months of sedentary activities indoor.

As you know, massage has so many benefits to keep your muscles, bones and tissues in good shape:

• Relieving stress, pain induced anxiety, and muscle congestion

• Improving range of motion, increasing flexibility and muscle tone

• Improving sleep patterns

• Improving metabolic waste removal and strengthening immune function

• Improving alertness

• Reducing swelling

• Encouraging faster healing time

• Relieving tension headaches

• Providing a sense of well-being

• Reducing fatigue

• Supporting white blood cell proliferation aiding our immune system

• Reducing depression

Another thing to keep in mind for summer is HYDRATION! Muscles and tissues require plenty of fluids (preferably water but milk and juices are OK too) to function properly and to avoid spasms and sprains. As we exercise or work our body hard, our muscles build up lactic acid. This is normal, but often lactic acid can become lodged within the tissues creating spasms or strains occur. Massage therapy can release these pockets of lactic acid and return muscles to their best.

Stay healthy and hydrated this summer!

 

Healing Sore Muscles

April 5th, 2012 • Posted by David Cox • Permalink

How Massage Heals Sore Muscles by Barbara P. Fernandez for The New York Times: Researchers are learning how massage soothes aching muscles.

 

A massage after vigorous exercise unquestionably feels good, and it seems to reduce pain and help muscles recover. Many people — both athletes and health professionals – have long contended it eases inflammation, improves blood flow and reduces muscle tightness. But until now no one has understood why massage has this apparently beneficial effect.

 

Now researchers have found what happens to muscles when a masseur goes to work on them. Their experiment required having people exercise to exhaustion and undergo five incisions in their legs in order to obtain muscle tissue for analysis. Despite the hurdles, the scientists still managed to find 11 brave young male volunteers. The study was published in the Feb. 1 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

 

On a first visit, they biopsied one leg of each subject at rest. At a second session, they had them vigorously exercise on a stationary bicycle for more than an hour until they could go no further. Then they massaged one thigh of each subject for 10 minutes, leaving the other to recover on its own. Immediately after the massage, they biopsied the thigh muscle in each leg again. After allowing another two-and-a-half hours of rest, they did a third biopsy to track the process of muscle injury and repair.

 

Vigorous exercise causes tiny tears in muscle fibers, leading to an immune reaction — inflammation — as the body gets to work repairing the injured cells. So the researchers screened the tissue from the massaged and unmassaged legs to compare their repair processes, and find out what difference massage would make. They found that massage reduced the production of compounds called cytokines, which play a critical role in inflammation. Massage also stimulated mitochondria, the tiny powerhouses inside cells that convert glucose into the energy essential for cell function and repair. “The bottom line is that there appears to be a suppression of pathways in inflammation and an increase in mitochondrial biogenesis,” helping the muscle adapt to the demands of increased exercise, said the senior author, Dr. Mark A. Tarnopolsky. Dr. Tarnopolsky, a professor of pediatrics and medicine at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, said that massage works quite differently from Nsaids and other anti-inflammatory drugs, which reduce inflammation and pain but may actually retard healing. Many people, for instance, pop an aspirin or Aleve at the first sign of muscle soreness. “There’s some theoretical concern that there is a maladaptive response in the long run if you’re constantly suppressing inflammation with drugs,” he said. “With massage, you can have your cake and eat it too—massage can suppress inflammation and actually enhance cell recovery.”

 

“This is important research, because it is the first to show that massage can reduce pro-inflammatory cytokines which may be involved in pain,” said Tiffany Field, director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami Medical School. She was not involved in the study. “We have known from many studies that pain can be reduced by massage based on self-report, but this is the first demonstration that the pain-related pro-inflammatory cytokines can be reduced.” she said. Dr. Tarnopolsky suggests that, in the long run, a professional massage may even be a better bargain than a pill. “If someone says “This is free and it might make you feel better, but it may slow down your recovery, do you still want it?” he asked. “Or would you rather spend the 50 bucks for a post-exercise massage that also might enhance your recovery?”