Many people believe that deep tissue massage is supposed to be painful to be beneficial. As the saying goes, "No Pain, No Gain" does not always apply to massage. In fact, many people fall into a deeper state of relaxation when they receive a deep tissue massage.

So what is a deep tissue massage? Deep tissue massage involves manipulating the deeper layers of muscles and the soft tissues of the body. It requires the massage therapist to melt into the tissue before reaching these deep layers by heating the superficial layers of the muscles at the top. Reaching the deep layers of muscles and soft tissues cannot always be achieved in the first session. Depending on each particular situation, the session may have to be modified to keep the client comfortable so that they do not resist working unconsciously or unconsciously.

Our muscles have a natural reflex reaction to resist pain. When a muscle thinks it is about to injure itself, this reflex is activated. When too much pressure is applied, for example during a massage, the muscle or group of muscles will naturally resist the force by squeezing even more. This is the opposite effect of what massage is all about. Effective massage relaxes and releases areas of tension.

Most people will naturally try to avoid painful situations. For example, not many people expect to go to the dentist as many people associate pain with the dentist. Getting a massage shouldn't be one of those cases. Everyone has a different level of comfort and pain tolerance. Each person can perceive pain on a different level depending on their tolerance for pain. When the body experiences pain, the body reacts through tension. During a deep tissue massage, the discomfort is normal and will be felt especially if there are inconsistencies within the tissues. The discomfort is described as "good pain," the kind that hurts and feels good at the same time in a strange way. On the other hand, pain can be described as uncomfortable and not well tolerated by the body.

There are many techniques or modalities that can fall into the category of deep tissue work. Neuromuscular therapy (NMT) and myofascial release are just two that can be described as advanced deep tissue techniques. NMT focuses on creating a balance between the central nervous system (made up of the brain, spine, and nerves) and the muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones, and joints of the body through specific methods. Myofascial release works to stretch and lengthen the connective tissue covers called fascia that surround every part of our internal structure, including our bones, muscles, and organs. Tight fascia can cause pain and restrict joint mobility.

There are times when deep pressure is necessary and can be painful, and that is in the case of scar tissue. Scar tissue or adhesions, as they are sometimes called, are thick areas of attached connective tissue that is created during the healing process of an injury or some type of surgery. Scar tissue work requires deep pressure to break the dense nature of this tissue. However, massage therapists must work within the client's comfort level and pain tolerance at all times. If a person cannot handle a large amount of pressure, they can take several more treatments to achieve the same results as someone with a higher threshold for pain. Results will occur, only at a slower rate.

Not everyone needs or should receive a deep tissue massage. Some people simply enjoy the feeling of deeper pressure on their muscles and others prefer a softer touch. Someone who has never experienced a massage before may not want to request a deep tissue massage. It is the responsibility of the massage therapist to determine if a deep tissue massage is appropriate and necessary through a thorough medical history and evaluation. A massage is only effective when the person at the table is comfortable and relaxed.

Author's Bio: 

For many years, liposuction has been the gold standard when it comes to fat reduction procedures.