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Below you will find descriptions of techniques commonly included in most Therapeutic Massage sessions at Health & Harmony.  Not every body is the same or responds to the same treatment every time, so these different modalities (methods of treatment) allow for a variety of approaches to each issue.  These techniques can be combined any number of ways, so every session will be different.  Your feedback is always valuable in helping determine what works best for you!

Deep Tissue Massage
Deep tissue is not the same as deep pressure.  This technique is a way of approaching the body to reach deep within the muscle or underlying tissue to relieve pain, and address the source of that pain.  Deep tissue can help restore healthy muscle and joint function by slowly softening and stretching tight muscle.  Though some soreness may occur following deep tissue massage, by focusing on your specific areas of concern, we can make longer-lasting changes to keep you feeling your best!
Myofascial Release
Myofascial Release Therapy is an extremely effective hands-on technique that works by applying gentle, sustained pressure to eliminate pain and restore flexibility and motion to the fascia (connective tissue).  Fascia is a densely woven sheath that interpenetrates and "houses" every muscle, bone, vein, nerve and all of our internal organs including the spinal cord.  A good visualization is a web that in effect holds everything together in a neat package connecting every part of the body to every other part of the body.  In its natural healthy state, the fascia is relaxed and has the flexibility to stretch and move without undue restriction. If however, there has been physical trauma to the body or scarring, the normally pliable fascia becomes tight and restricted, causing tension throughout the rest of the body.  It is important to address fascial restrictions as well as muscle tension to provide lasting relief.
Neuromuscular Therapy
Neuromuscular Therapy (NMT), sometimes known as trigger point therapy, is a comprehensive program of soft tissue manipulation techniques that balance the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves) with the structure and form of the musculoskeletal system (skeleton and muscles of the body).  Neuromuscular Therapy can help individuals experiencing structural distortion, biomechanical dysfunction and accompanying pain that is often a symptom of underlying problem. It is used to locate and release spasms and hypercontraction in the tissues; eliminate trigger points that cause referred pain; restore postural alignment, proper biomechanics and flexibility to the tissues; rebuild the strength of injured tissues and assist venous and lymphatic flow.
Positional Release Technique
Positional release is a very non-invasive yet effective way of treating tight muscle tissue.  This technique involves positioning the body to bring the attachment sites of the muscle closer together (as the muscle does when it contracts), finding the position of greatest ease, and holding that position for one to two minutes.  This allows the muscle to relax without discomfort.  This is the opposite of stretching, and it can be a great approach to tissue that is very tender to the touch as it works indirectly. 
Pulsing and Rebalancing

Pulsing and rebalancing involves a variety of rocking, jostling and pulsing movements that gently encourage relaxation and release of tension.  Through movement, we can affect deeper tissue and joints that are not accessible by palpation used in other techniques.  Some pulsing and rebalancing movements are included in every therapeutic massage at Health and Harmony.  The gentle rocking helps locate restrictions or "blockages" and provides a uniquely non-invasive yet powerfully effective way to relax muscles and restore the body to its optimum state of balance.

If you would like a full session of just pulsing and rebalancing, please indicate this when you make your appointment. A full pulsing and rebalancing session is done fully clothed.  Be sure to wear comfortable, non-restrictive clothing.  Another option is to do 30 minutes of pulsing and rebalancing followed by 30 or 60 minutes of therapeutic massage for a total of a 60 or 90 minute session.  This is a great way to loosen the muscles and relax the body before specific muscle work.

Bamboo and Rattan Massage
Feel the tension melt away under the smooth pressure of warm, specially crafted bamboo and rattan tools.  This great technique can be incorporated into most sessions.  The heat and broad pressure of the tools, warmed on a heating pad, provide a unique and effective approach to releasing tension in many areas of the body.  Ariel gets lots of great feedback on how much her clients love this!
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