How to Relax: Neck and Shoulder Massage Essentials (video post)

Did you know that tense muscles aren’t just a symptom of stress, but that they CREATE more stress? If you’re anything like me, you probably don’t notice what your muscles are doing until you snap at someone on the freeway or at one of your kids in the evening.

What if we made relaxation a priority instead of a luxury?

Today’s video was filmed at Massage and Advocare in San Diego. Massage therapist and holistic health practitioner Stephanie Foster shares great tips for how touch can send stress in our neck and shoulders running for the hills. A transcript of the techniques and where you can view them in the video follows.

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Video Transcript

Preparing to Relax: Temple and Scalp Massage (1:02 in video)

  • Receiver – sitting. Giver – Standing
  • Receiver- take a deep breath and let it out. close your eyes and clear your mind.
  • Giver- For a few brief moments gently place your hands on receivers shoulders. Then begin at the temples (side of face), moving in slow circular motions with your finger tips.
  • Giver- move those circular movements onto the scalp. pause to apply aromatherapy to hands (if you choose to) and continue circular massaging motions all over entire scalp.

Neck Massage Technique (3:30)

  • Receiver- while remaining relaxed communicate with Giver about pressure and speed.
  • Giver- adjust accordingly, next make your dominant hand into a “C” shape, cup the neck and move in circular motions (always avoiding the spine).

Shoulder Massage Technique (4:40)

  • Giver- squeeze shoulders, give them a shake and preform percussion 
  • avoid spine, shoulder, and collar bones for the chops, pecks and cups
  • Receiver- take in nice deep breaths and allow your mind and body to come back to the room.

Winding down (7:02)

  • Giver- once again gently place hands on their shoulders to say goodbye.
  • Both- wash hands and trade.

Making relaxation a habit (7:47)
The importance of physical touch in stress reduction.

Have a healthy, relaxed week!

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