A massage can relieve stress, put you in a euphoric mood and benefit you physically. Whether you are on vacation or in the middle of a 60-hour workweek, having a massage is healing and amazing for your mind, body and spirit.

Different techniques can be applied during a massage, from long, gliding strokes to firm kneading. “Effleurage” is a technique consisting of long, gliding strokes using the palms, thumbs and fingertips. Then, there is “friction”, where the massage therapist uses her palms, hands and fingers to apply pressure in certain motions. “Percussion” consists of tapping briskly on the body. The benefits of these movements are numerous, such as increasing the level of oxygen in the blood, flushing muscle toxins, boosting the immune system and improving circulation. All good things, right!

If you have muscle or joint pain, either from an injury or just from normal wear and tear, a massage will reduce the soreness you are feeling while increasing your flexibility. In fact, massages are often used to ease pain. According to the Mayo Clinic, massages can help with anxiety, digestive disorders, headaches, tissue strains, sports injuries and insomnia. Just what the doctor ordered!

Whether you use a massage for pampering or as a way to relieve pain and stress, there are many advantages to treating yourself to a relaxing rub down. Your aching, often neglected body will thank you. All that tension that you held in your neck and shoulders? It will have dissipated. Once you have enjoyed a massage, you will be hooked on the feeling. Great news: the more massages you have the more benefits you will reap. A study by the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine reports a sustained benefit from repeated massage therapy. It may sound obvious, but regular massages can help you live a healthier life and that is a worthwhile investment!