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The Wondrous Healing of Massage Therapy

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Sometimes I meet someone who has never had a full body massage. It's always funny to me, the way it's funny to meet someone who's never tasted peanut butter. How can it be? I am not a wealthy woman and I never have been - but I guess I've traveled through enough hippie waves to really get a full experience of full body massage for many years.

For example, while in college I worked as a dishwasher and later as a waitress at a local cafe in my neighborhood in Jamaica Plain, Mass. In exchange for a free meal here and there, the local massage therapist would offer full body massages to the staff of this cafe. They had a wonderful barter which inspired countless hours of pristine dish detail and coffee refills.

He was a magician in the massage room, full of caring and compassion, which slithered through his hands into the weary flesh of the workers.

Then I lived with a woman, my roommate, who was studying to become a massage therapist and needed someone to "practice" on. It was a difficult position to put me in, but someone had to do it, and I relented, sighing, whatever...

So it's not that I've spent a fortune at spas, but here and there, massage has always been part of something I'd like to do.

In fact, I get fewer massages now than ever before, now that I work harder and have less time and money for myself, raising two kids who need braces and books and football and karate outfits and socks. And shoes, too.

The thing is, though, it really is therapeutic.

Let's discuss the myriad of important benefits.

For one thing, massage just feels good. But it feels good for a reason. It increases the flow of blood in the muscles. It alleviates muscle pain and stiffness. It allows for the circulation of lymph and increases the oxygenation of the blood. For stress, human touch is a tremendous relief. Like hugging but really squeezing, the benefits and positive impact cannot be denied. Massage has been thought to have the power to alleviate sadness and depression, to help with focus and concentration and to lift the energy levels of the recipients.

For more on this topic, please visit: www.massagetherapy.com

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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