Hot stone massage is a natural therapy in which warmed stones are positioned on parts of the client’s body of to maximize the therapeutic benefit. The stones used are typically river rocks or other very smooth-surfaced stones made of basalt. These stones are heated in sanitizing water before use. The high iron content in basalt helps the stones retain heat during the massage. Hot stone massages are beneficial on both physical and psychological levels.
- Muscle Relaxation: The heat from the stones helps your muscles relax, allowing the massage therapist to manipulate your deep tissues more effectively.
- Pain Relief: Hot stone massage may provide greater relief due to the intense nature of the massage. Because the hot stones allow the massage therapist to penetrate deeper, you may find that a hot stone massage leaves you feeling physically better than a Swedish or deep-tissue massage that does not incorporate heat.
- Improved Circulation:As the heat from the stones penetrates into your deeper body tissues, your blood vessels open, resulting in improved circulation. Poor circulation can lead to fatigue, which tenses the muscles, and a buildup of fluid and lactic acid in the muscles. Increased circulation delivers more oxygen to the muscles, which can help ease aches and pains.
- Mental Benefits: You may find that the relaxation afforded to you through a hot stone massage helps ease some of your mental stress and tension. A hot stone massage may also help you combat some of the symptoms of anxiety disorders and depression.