Surprising Reasons Why You Knead a Massage in the Winter Months

Written by Julieta Hernandez , Posted in Articles, Massage Therapy

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Massage Your Way To Better Health – Benefits of Massage in Winter Time

Struggling to deal with winter-related illnesses, labor, and dry skin? A good massage may be just what you need.

Massage Combats Dry Skin

Utah is known for its dry air, and towns like Ogden and Salt Lake City are dry even by Saharan Desert standards. This makes it difficult for Utah residents to maintain healthy skin. Dry skin is not only unattractive, but also presents a serious health risk. Studies have shown that it leads to cracks along the mucus that coats your sinuses, making you more vulnerable to the flu and other viruses. The influenza virus also lives longer in drier environments, leading to greater risk of infection.

A good massage can resolve all these problems. Massages influence the collagen in your skin, making it moister and more elastic. For best results, choose a masseuse who uses coconut oil, milk-oatmeal, or some other natural moisturizer.

Massage Reduces Seasonal Pain

Given our state’s vulnerability to large snowfalls, winter can be one of the most labor-intensive months. A season spent shoveling and trudging through snow can take a toll on your shoulders, lower back, and forearms. In extreme cases, it can even cause hernias and nerve or vertebral damage. Regular massages can be a great way to mitigate this pain, giving you the energy and resilience to get through the winter stronger than ever.

Massage Fights Diseases

A good massage can heal damage to your nervous system, allowing your body to more easily transmit information, nutrients, and cells. One of the benefits of this healing is increased flow of white blood cells, the heavy hitters of your immune system. Known as “killer cells,” these lymphocytes are adept at finding and killing viruses and bacteria, helping you to avoid getting sick and to recover quickly when you do. There’s no better way to weather the “sick season” than regular massage sessions!

Massage Improves Circulation

Massages help your body to transmit blood more easily, reducing your blood pressure and helping your body function more efficiently. Healthy blood pressure brings a wide range of health benefits, including lower risk of heart disease, strokes, dementia, and aneurysms. Increased blood circulation also means that you’re less likely to feel cold during the winter. Finally, massages can help prevent muscle contraction, a common ailment during winter months. Less muscle contraction makes it easier for your body to transmit nutrients and eliminate waste, giving you more energy.

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Massage Promotes Mental Health

Besides the benefits to your body, winter massages are also good for your soul! Seasonal affective disorder is an atypical form of depression that many experience during the winter, marked by feelings of hopelessness and an elevated risk of suicide. Massage therapy helps to cure this condition by releasing endorphins and serotonin, two chemicals that increase feelings of happiness and reduce stress.

More broadly, massage therapy has been shown to promote hormonal health. Hormones are responsible for controlling many aspects of your mood and personality, from hunger to sex drive to concentration. Excessive levels of hormones like cortisol, which produces stress, are associated with unhealthy mindsets and practices. Massages reduce levels of cortisol, replacing it with oxytocin, a hormone that produces feelings of happiness and contentment. The end result is more hope, more happiness, and a healthier outlook on life.

Salt Lake City Massage

If you’re ready to take advantage of the physical and mental benefits of massage therapy during the winter, consider a visit to Matrix Massage & Spa. Located in Salt Lake City, Matrix offers high-quality massage and spa treatments throughout Utah. We offer hot towels, heated table pads, and hot stone massage to give you the combined benefits of heat and massage. To start your journey toward better health, visit our website today!

Julieta Hernandez

Julieta is the owner of Matrix Spa & Massage in Salt Lake City, UT. She and her staff pride themselves on providing the best massages in a truly comfortable and relaxed environment.

Massage Therapy FAQ’s

The law always requires that you be appropriately covered with sheets or towels to keep you comfortable and warm. If you start feeling uncomfortable or exposed, speak up. Your therapist will respect your wishes and work with you to make the massage session a comfortable one.
No, only undress as much as you are comfortable with. Some people prefer undressing completely, while others prefer to keep undergarments on. You'll have privacy in your massage room to undress before the session and redress afterwards.
How often you should get a massage depends on your massage therapy goals. Some people get a monthly massage to manage stress or to prevent health problems. Others opt for weekly sessions if they need relief from injuries and chronic tension.
Licensing and certification mean that the massage therapist can legally practice massage in your city or state. To get this license, they must have performed several hours of training at an accredited school, passed the extensive licensure exam, and have paid any relevant licensing fees.
How much depends on how pleased you are with the service and how much the massage costs (the full price, not any discounted fees). One easy trick is to think about how you would tip a waiter after a similarly priced restaurant meal. This is often 15-20% or more if you received exceptional service.
Let your massage therapist know before the session if there are areas on your body that you don't want touched. They will have the training and experience to give you a therapeutic massage while working around ticklish or sensitive places like your feet or abdomen.
Yes, absolutely. You should always speak up if something is uncomfortable. Secondly, keep the lines of communication open during deep tissue massage or sports injury massages. Your therapist needs the feedback to work on you properly and without aggravating an injury.
 
On the other hand, if you are looking for relaxation, it's often best not to talk unless necessary. This lets your mind as well as your body release tension. With the right mindful breathing technique, you may even achieve a stress relieving meditative state during the massage.
Most likely, unless your doctor says otherwise. Prenatal massage can reduce and relieve common pregnancy issues like lower and upper back pain, sciatic nerve irritation, swelling, tension headaches, heartburn and constipation, and more. Let your massage therapist know that you're pregnant so they can use the right techniques during the session.
If you’re used to Swedish massages, it’s definitely going to feel a little rougher. However, you should always communicate with your massage therapist if the pressure is too much. If you’re tensing up and muscle guarding during a deep tissue massage, the benefits of the massage may be lessened.
It’s important to be realistic about what one deep tissue massage can achieve. Many people want just one session to get rid of all the tension they’ve built up in their body over decades. They ask for more pressure, thinking that if the therapist just pushes hard enough, all their knots will go away after an hour. They won’t. It’s going to take a few sessions for the best results, based on your body and lifestyle, and increasing the pressure a masseuse uses doesn’t necessarily help. Your problems likely amassed over a lifetime of strain, stress and poor posture. If you have chronic problems, it will probably take a combination of massage, exercise and relaxation techniques to stem the problem.

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