Massage is one of the hallmarks of alternative medicine, and the practice dates back thousands of years. By manipulating skin, muscles, and connective tissues through touch, massage may have several potential benefits. Research is ongoing, but studies have shown that massage can be helpful for relieving muscle tightness and pain.
Massage may also decrease the severity of anxiety and depression as well as having an impact on certain types of headaches. You should always talk to your doctor if you are concerned about any medical issues and want to know if massage might be a helpful treatment option.
Types of Back and Body Massagers
While massage therapists need to undergo extensive training to understand how to use the proper techniques for rubbing and manipulating different parts of the body, advancements in technology have enabled at-home devices to accurately mimic several of these methods.
Body and back massagers are available in a number of different styles. Handheld massagers might use vibration or a rolling or kneading motion to target tight muscles. Many of these products also have interchangeable heads that can be used for specific results. These massagers typically have several speed settings so that you can choose whether you prefer a light touch or deeper tissue penetration.
Another common variety of body massager is a cushion that spans the entire back (and occasionally the seat) of your chair. Depending on how technologically advanced these products are, they might simply make use of vibration, or they may include moving massage motors that perform percussive massage on different areas of your back and/or neck.
Since heat is another important component that can promote relaxation, many products also have built-in heating elements that can be paired with massage for optimal results. back to top »