August 11, 2009
I finished my final exam for Into Swedish Massage! Two down, one to go!
We were required to do a timed hour of massage using all levels of strokes: Effleurage (long, gliding strokes), Petrissage (lifting, circling and kneading the muscles), Friction (firm, deep rubbing movements), Tapotement (tapping or percussive movements), and Vibration (rapidly shaking or vibrating specific muscles). We incorporated Range of Motion on various joints as well as being tested on New York State draping standards (so our clients always feel modest and safe). The best part? When I was done giving my hour long massage, I got to relax on the table and be the recipient of a fellow students work!
A little history about Swedish massage? Sure. Why not!
Body Massage is the technique that most people associate with the massage world. This is the style that evolved in Greece and Rome in Ancient Time that was later adopted in other parts of Europe and America. One of the first writings about the kneading of muscles is when Hippocrates wrote in 460 BC that "The physician must be experienced in many things, but assuredly in rubbing”
So why is it called Swedish Massage if originated in Greece and Rome?
Pehr Henrik Ling was a great Swedish gymnast who also happened to be the great-great grandson of Swedish scientist Olof Rudbeck. Rudbeck is credited as the discoverer of the human lymphatic system. In his young adult years Ling traveled to China – where he studied their Martial Arts, Exercise, Nutrition, Health Philosophies and Massage Practices. When he returned to Sweden he carried on with his very physical life style. He ended up suffering with joint injuries and rheumatism. Looking for an effective and holistic approach for treatment, he combined the research of his great-great grandfather, the studies of Roman practice and the techniques used in China to develop the foundation to what we respect as Swedish Massage.