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Swedish massage is the most common and best-known type of massage in the West. If it’s your first time at the spa or you don’t get massage very often, Swedish massage is the perfect massage for you.
A Swedish massage can be slow and gentle, or vigorous and bracing, depending on the therapist’s personal style and what he or she wants to achieve.
Swedish massage is based on the Western concepts of anatomy and physiology, as opposed to energy work on “meridiens” or sen lines in Asian massage systems. Most people get a 50 or 60-minute Swedish or deep tissue massage, but 75 or 90-minutes gives the therapist more time to work the muscle tissue and achieve results.
What Happens During A Swedish Massage
In all Swedish massage, the therapist lubricates the skin with massage oil and performs various massage strokes that warm up and work the muscle tissue, releasing tension and breaking up muscle “knots” or adhered tissues, called adhesions. Swedish massage promotes relaxation, eases muscle tension and creates other health benefits.
Before the massage, Danielle might ask you about any injuries or other conditions she should know about. Things you would want tell her include areas of tightness or pain, allergies, and conditions like pregnancy. You can also tell her up front if you have a preference for light or firm pressure. It’s best not to get a massage if you are ill.
After the consultation, Danielle instructs you how to lie on the table — face up or face down, and underneath the sheet or towel — and then leaves the room. He or she will knock or ask if you are ready before entering.
The Nudity Factor
During a Swedish massage you are generally nude underneath a towel or sheet. Danielle uncovers only the part of the body she is working on, a technique called draping. If the nudity gets you out of your comfort zone, you can keep your underwear on, and many newcomers do.
You usually start by lying face down with your head in a u-shaped face cradle so your spine stays neutral