A little about Hot Stone Massage Therapy
What is Hot Stone Massage?
The Hot Stones used in heated stone massage are basalt rock. Basalt rock is a type of rock rich in iron, which allows the rock to retain heat for longer. There are also Cold Stones, which are River Rocks and used strictly for cooling purposes or reducing inflammation. The heat of Hot Stones warms and relaxes the muscles, which allows the Therapist to apply deeper pressure (if desired). The heat is able to penetrate through superficial muscles, so it has an effect on deeper muscles and they can be worked on without the deep specific pressure of a Regular Massage. The warmth of the Hot Stones also helps improve circulation and calms the nervous system, so you leave your treatment feeling calm and rejuvenated.
How do the Hot Stones Feel?
The Basalt rocks used during the massage are flat and very smooth, which makes gliding over the skin very easy. The stones are a variety of sizes and the Therapist selects an appropriate rock to use on a specific body part. The stones are heated in a unit where they can be submerged in hot water (both RMTs here at KW Health Connection use a Crock Pot). The Therapist always picks up the stone from the water and holds the stone before ever placing it on your body, which ensures that the temperature of the stone is tolerable. Everyone is unique with their own temperature range however, so what may be “warm” to the Therapist may be “too hot” for the Client. Everyone is different which is why communication during the treatment between Client and Therapist is so important. Cold River Rocks may also be used on the face to help reduce sinus inflammation, headaches and to awaken a Client at the end of the treatment.
What are the Benefits of Hot Stone Massage?
Receiving a Hot Stone Massage may help you discover a deeper sense of relaxation, relief of aches and anxiety, increased circulation, assist with detoxification and toning of the skin. The use of Heated Stones can also help with releasing muscle tension/tightness, improve joint range of motion and flexibility and help the body to stimulate the release of endorphins. It has been proven that 1 stroke with a hot stone is equivalent to 10 Swedish massage strokes. Thus, Hot Stone Massage Therapy has been calculated to be 10 times deeper and last 10 times longer than a Swedish massage.
Is a Hot Stone Massage Recommended for Everyone?
Although a Hot Stone Massage has many promising benefits, people with certain conditions should avoid getting any Hot Stone treatment. These conditions include: pregnancy, diabetes, high blood pressure and any circulatory problems or pathologies. Although Hot Stone is not recommended for people with these conditions, there are modifications that your Therapist can make in order to accommodate you.
Is Hot Stone Massage Covered Under Extended Health Benefits?
It sure is! Because the Therapists here at KW Health Connection are Registered Massage Therapists, Hot Stone Massage can be claimed through your extended health benefits!
Alyssa Hendry, RMT