A Hot Stone Massage Rubs You the Right Way
Mick Jagger must have secretly loved hot stone massages. Think about it; by being on the road so much with The Rolling Stones he probably can't get no satisfaction from his hot stone massages.
Well, its a theory. But regardless of Jagger, the balsamic variety used in hot stone massage makes veterans and newcomers to the treatment feel like a rock star, without all those usual celebrity stressors.
Hot stone massage combines traditional massage with oiled, heated stones of varying sizes, resulting in the expected total relaxation. But for Dr. Robert Coppola of All-Star Chiropractic of Elsmere, KY, the treatment is more than just a massage. Its a healing experience.
It allows for a decrease in muscle spasms and muscle tension and releases endorphins, which is the bodys natural pain relieving chemical, Coppola says. Hot stone allows for muscle and tissue elongation and breaks up muscle restriction, including scar tissue and fibrosis, which are common post-injury or post-surgery. This helps break up that scar tissue.
These health benefits of hot stone massage are a result of technique. Rather than just rubbing the heated stones on a clients body, some therapists achieve this therapeutic effect by giving a full-body rub down with the actual lava rocks. Radiating more warmth, and a soothing effect, hot lava rocks are used as tools to give thorough, deep tissue and muscle massages.
Once the massage therapist wraps up a rub down of one particular area, heated stones are placed on the part of the body that has just been worked on. For example, once the lower back has been treated with lava rocks, the therapist places a heated stone in that spot, and moves to another area. Or, if the arms were just massaged, the therapist will place the stone in the persons hand.
We incorporate therapeutic massage with just a feel good hot stone massage, Coppola says.
Before getting excited about the positive effects of hot stone, you should drink a lot of water afterwards. The treatment releases lactic acid, which is responsible for sore and tired muscles. After a hot stone massage, Coppola says clients should drink a lot of water to flush out that acid.
Also, you might want to cancel your plans subsequent to your massage. Dont plan on going out, youll be pretty greasy from the lotions and oils, he laughs.
According to Coppola, something else hot stone seekers should consider is the location or treatment provider. I would go to someone who is also really good with therapeutic massage. I would look for someone working in a health care clinic who understands the body, injuries and the healing process, he says.
Hot stone is fairly new to this part of the country, Coppola says, first-timers wont believe the outcome: When theyre done theyre amazed at how it worksits a shocking experience when they get done, he says. Its amazing–Its an overall more relaxing experience than a traditional massage. Because its newer and not as popular, its definitely more of an experience; clients look at it as a luxury.
Anyone interested in trying hot stone massage should throw expectations out the window, Coppola says. If youve not had it done, you dont know what it is. Hot stone is a must-try service, just because its so unique and not that popular in this area yet. It was just for movie stars. We make it affordable so the general public can do it too.
Depending on the length of time and experience level of the massage therapist, hot stone massages run from $60 to $100.