Can Massage Therapy Deepen Your Practice?

Massage room
Creative Commons License photo credit: Average Jane

As I’ve mentioned in other posts, I suffer from a bad knee injury, sustained about eight years ago in basic training. So, one doesn’t get away with limping for eight years without some seriously negative side effects. I’m now experiencing tons of lower back pain on top of some major troubles with my left knee (the “good one”) since it bares all of my weight when walking. For the most part, I can deal with a lot of this pain through my yoga practice, but as of lately, after each session I seem to be feeling worse rather than better and so I began to search out other options. This is how I came upon massage therapy.

Now, I’m the type who usually looked to massage therapy whenever I felt I deserved a little treat or when my friends and I decided to have a girly spa weekend. (I should note, however, that there is a huge different between just plain ol’ getting a massage and actually seeking out a Registered Massage Therapist, but more on that later.) So it was a bit of a mental leap for me to turn to massage therapy as a means to cope with my pain. My best friend is a RMT and has always encouraged me to give massage therapy a chance, but the expense always had me rolling my eyes and clutching my wallet with a vice-like grip. I’m a writer, for heaven’s sake! I can’t afford such luxuries! But lately, I found out that my insurance policy covers this kind of treatment, so with doctor prescription in hand, I started my first round of therapy with a reputable therapist.

The important thing to note here is that many spa websites will list “massage” as a service, however, many of these workers are not trained in massage therapy but rather, are trained in esthetics. A true massage therapist is registered by the province in which they work and has been highly trained on anatomy, the affect of therapy on the body and general wellness. I encourage all readers to ensure that their practitioner is completely registered before jumping into a treatment plan.

Oh, dear readers, if I could explain to you the joy I feel after just my first two appointments! Stretching has become easier, my yoga practice is no longer hindered by pain, and my massage therapist has taught me small yoga movements (she is also a trained yoga teacher, conveniently!) that I can do at home to improve my pain. In fact, I’m even headed on a yoga retreat in April, designed specifically for those in pain! Won’t that make for some great blog fodder!

So, if you have an insurance policy that covers massage therapy, or if you happen to have extra hundred dollar bills floating around (you can also make out cheques to yours truly), make an appointment with a reputable massage therapist. They can assist you in achieving fitness goals, reduce pain and increase flexibility, all beneficial for those dedicated to their yoga practice.




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