Deep Tissue Massage
Focused kneading to soothe chronically tense areas.
Deep tissue massage therapy is similar to Swedish massage, but the deeper pressure is beneficial in releasing chronic muscle tension. The focus is on the deepest layers of muscle tissue, tendons and fascia (the protective layer surrounding muscles, bones and joints).
Deep tissue massage techniques are used to break up scar tissue and physically break down muscle "knots" or adhesions (bands of painful, rigid tissue) that can disrupt circulation and cause pain, limited range of motion, and inflammation.
Deep tissue massage usually focuses on a specific problem, such as chronic muscle pain, injury rehabilitation, and the following conditions:
Low back pain
Recovery from injuries (e.g. whiplash, falls)
Repetitive strain injury, such as carpal tunnel syndrome
Muscle tension in the hamstrings, glutes, IT band, legs, quadriceps, rhomboids, upper back
Upper back or neck pain
A study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that people's blood pressure fell after a single 45 to 60 minute deep tissue massage. Additionally, a 2010 meta-analysis in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry found that massage modalities like deep tissue reduce stress hormone levels and heart rate while boosting mood and relaxation by triggering the release of oxytocin and serotonin.