After everything we do daily, it’s no wonder that our bodies—and minds—crave a healing, tension-releasing massage to help us wind down and feel relaxed. Often, we want someone to work out the knot in our back or crick in our neck—something your significant other may request from time to time. The truth is, you can offer a therapeutic, at-home massage that provides some of the better-health benefits of massage therapy, like easing pain and reducing stress, while also creating an intimate moment between you and your partner. Enjoying this practice together allows you to connect through the power of touch in a private, soothing setting.

Use your body weight so that you don’t become tired of using your fingers or hands. Among the most significant complaints heard is that one simple massages their partners for a couple of minutes. They then stop due to their hands or arms hurting or aching –this is likely exhaustion arising from improper technique, and it probably has to do with your positioning. Fantastic massage is not as about your grasp and more about your posture and using gravity to your advantage.

High blood pressure means excessive pressure against blood vessel walls. Massage affects the blood vessels, so people with high blood pressure or a heart condition should receive light, sedating massages and check with their physicians to see whether they can receive more vigorous massage. 

​So rather than attempting to massage your spouse when she is standing next to you or sitting beside you on the sofa, have her sit on the ground on a pillow. You can then sit on the couch or in a chair as you stand behind her. She may also lie around the ground on some a mat, but if sitting can find some additional stretching in by leaning forward as you massage her spine. In any case, use gravity to your advantage. 

Do not forget that the oil. Do not just put it on your partner’s back, however, like he or she is a salad. Use the oil onto your hands and heat them up before applying them to the areas that you would want to massage. In this way, it will create a beautiful warmth for your partner. There are about a zillion ways to work away stress, but the one we’re really craving these days is a massage. A good one, where the waiting room has a lit fireplace and fancy teas and the treatment involves a silky essential oil blend and the hands of an actual angel.

Don’t harm. Avoid pinching or catching muscles. You can avoid this by keeping your palms together and together with your whole hand at the massage. Massaging is like sculpting: When working with clay, then you want to devote some time softening it at first. Likewise having a massage, use soft strokes to warm the muscles up before you attempt to knead them.

​In the beginning, ask whether the pressure is enough. Adjust as needed: When your partner needs a deeper massage, lean in with your body weight. You can also use your knuckles to targets muscles that are really stiff. Always keep one hand on your partner It helps to keep things feeling continuous and more fluid. Use your body weight, not your strength. You won’t expend as much energy and be able to draw out the massage and finish strong, instead of tuckering out. 

​How to massage the back: With the base of the hand and the pads of your elbows, rub circles up and down along her spine to warm up the muscles. Be careful not to press on the spine itself. Put a small amount of warm lotion or oil on your hands. Rub your hands together so the lotion is spread evenly on your hands. Move your hands slowly during the massage to help the person relax. Start massaging the back at the lower back. Move your hands upward on both sides of the spine all the way to the shoulders.

​You can provide a more comfortable massage by using broad strokes, kneading massive segments of the muscle instead of targeting smaller regions, and using the heel of your hand or a loose fist. Even knots and trigger factors may be worked on broadly (and frequently less painfully) just by loosening the whole muscle around the knots. This is essential to keep in mind if your subject has fibromyalgia, because accidentally hitting a trigger point could lead to hours or even days of pain.

If your hands are tense, the massage will probably feel like it was done with rocks. Don’t overthink or examine, put all of your focus in the present time and FEEL the muscles under the skin. Giving a massage could be a really zen experience, and the more relaxed and in tune you’re, the better the massage will feel to the individual getting it. So relaaaaaaaaaaaax! 

​The thicker the muscle, the heavier the pressure. Thicker muscles can handle (and typically need ) more tension, so don’t be scared to push down on those encouraging lower back muscles or the thick muscles that anchor the shoulder into the neck (the traps, if you prefer names). Alternately, burn on thinner muscles and muscles which extend over bone. And as always, make sure that your subject knows that it’s okay, and you really PREFER, for them to let you go deeper or lighten up.

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