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Glossary of Terms

Term Explanation
Adhesion A binding together of two anatomical surfaces that are normally separate. Occurs frequently in muscle and connective tissue after trauma or with chronic tension.
Beating A percussion massage technique applied with lightly closed fist using the bottom of the fist as the striking surface; used for stimulation.
Compression A massage technique that employs a gradual compressing of tissue followed by a gradual reduction of pressure; used to increase circulation.
CranioSacral Therapy Light hands-on therapy technique for finding and correcting cerebral and spinal imbalances or blockages that may cause sensory, motor or intellectual dysfunction.
Effleurage Is a stroke generally used in a Swedish massage treatment. This smooth, gliding stroke is used to relax soft tissue and is applied using both hands.
Energy Balancing Therapy which works with the life force to bring about the healing of body, mind and spirit through the art of science of consciousness oriented touch.
Fascia A layer or sheet of connective tissue that connects the various structures and organs of the body. Some fascia is simple sheets, others are complex and multi-layered. Fascia is usually divided into two types: superficial and deep.
Friction Is the deepest of Swedish massage strokes. This stroke encompasses deep, circular movements applied to soft tissue causing the underlying layers of tissue to rub against each other. The result causes an increase in blood flow to the massaged area.
Holistic Massage Treats the body as a whole and does not concentrate on only a troubled area.
Integrated Massage Therapy IMT combines bodywork, conscious psychotherapeutic work, unconscious and spiritual levels together.
Myofascial Release (MFR) Is a form of bodywork that is manipulative in nature and seeks to rebalance the body be releasing tension in the fascia. Light touch and light pulls are used in conjunction with long, stretching strokes to help release muscle tension in a whole area.
Petrissage / Kneading Involves squeezing, rolling and kneading the muscles and usually follows effleurage during Swedish massage.
Rocking A joint mobilization technique in which a body part is moved rhythmically from side to side or back and forth; may accompany compression.
Soft Tissue Release (STR) The STR technique complements other techniques used during massage treatment. The technique is administered simply by applying and maintaining a pressure, or 'locking' into the relevant tissues whilst simultaneously streching away aligning fibres.
Strain/Counter Strain Are a set of techniques for relieving muscloskeletal spasm and pain. It is a passive procedure that places the body or limb into the position of greatest comfort. This reduces or arrests the inappropriate nervous system activity that maintains protective muscle spasm. Normalisation of both muscle tone and joint function normally accompany the release or elimination of pain that result.
Tapotement Is executed with cupped hands, fingers or the edge of the hand with short, alternating taps to the client.
Wellness A dynamic state of health in which a person strives for optimal body-mind functioning.

 

 

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