Massage is one of the oldest forms of health care practices in the world. It has a rich history spanning many cultures, continents, and time periods. It is purely the manipulation of soft tissues by applying pressure to specific points of an individual’s body, but there are many forms and techniques that can be used. Therapeutic massage centers around the idea that our bodies can heal themselves. A massage can pose many benefits including muscle tension reduction, stress relief, muscle spasm relief, pain relief from sore muscles, and anxiety reduction. The products in this category help apply different amounts of pressure and enhance levels of stress relief and relaxation for the individual.
Massage practices are believed to have begun in India around the year 3,000 BC. Massage was the highest and most divine form of medicine at the time, believed to have been passed down through generations. The first recorded usages of massage, however, were in Egypt and China in the years 3000-2500 BC. We can see the Egyptians depicted in tomb paintings applying pressure to specific points in an individual’s body in order for the individual to feel beneficial effects. Chinese massage practices stemmed from their beliefs that illnesses occurred out of a spiritual imbalance in the body’s pathways. We still see the Chinese practices utilized today in the forms of acupuncture and acupressure. Massage was brought to western civilizations when philosophers like Hippocrates recommended a form of massage for treatment of athletic injuries.
Massage practices were rediscovered and used again through the 20th century. Particularly, they were used to treat World War I soldiers who had been suffering from nerve-related injuries. The later half of the 20th century brought a massive resurgence of the ancient therapeutic practice. That resurgence brought us to where we are today. Today, massages are used for recreation as well as a form of recovery for athletes. We still utilize many of the practices that had been engineered in ancient civilizations of the Greeks, Romans, Chinese, and Egyptians. With these roots still held deep in the past traditions of massage therapy, this industry remains a reputable way to improve body and mental wellness.