The Benefits of Reflexology- Shiatsu Massage & Hot Stone Massage

The Benefits of Reflexology- Shiatsu Massage & Hot Stone Massage

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Relaxing With Reflexology

The practice of reflexology is a natural type of healing that works with the body itself to promote total wellness.

Reflexology takes into consideration both the physical and emotional state of one's health working towards a goal of relaxing the body to allow healing to take place.

With the main focus on the body's ability to heal itself once it is free of tension and stress, reflexology techniques can enhance sleep, alleviate muscle aches and pains, and provide relief from many types of headaches and pain and pressure from inflamed sinus membranes.

Reflexology is most often administered in conjunction with traditional or alternative medicine.

Reflexology is generally administered to the feet, but can also be applied to the hands as well.

Practitioners advocate that the areas of the feet and hands that they focus on are directly related to other body parts.

By massaging and applying various levels of pressure to certain areas of the hands or feet, the other corresponding body parts will benefit and respond, resulting in a healthier energy flow to the affected areas.

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Generally, the left hand or foot represents the left side of the body and visa versa.

The inside of the foot represents the spine and the outside of the foot represents the arm and shoulder areas.

The head and neck are reflected in the toes and fingers, and the ball of the foot is believed to correlate to the upper back, heart and lungs.

Reflexologists are trained in applying just the right amount of pressure to just the right area to produce the needed relaxation and healing to the corresponding areas of the body.

It is important to realize that reflexology is not a cure for medical conditions but more of a promotion of positive attitudes and energies to encourage positive body awareness.

Many people believe that effective healing begins with a positive mental attitude.

The goal of reflexology is to relax the body and relieve tensions that can inhibit a positive outlook.

Reflexology clients often report that after treatments they feel very relaxed and calm.

A general sense of well being often replaces feelings of worry and stress during administration of the therapy.

Another benefit is believed to be better circulation to the hands and feet.

While the benefits of reflexology are not founded in scientific proof as of yet, it is an art that has been recorded as far back as Egyptian times and continues its popularity today by many who seek out various other alternative medicines from their Toronto, Ottawa or Ontario wellness specialists.

And who can argue with how wonderful it feels to have a good foot rub at the end of a long day?

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Shiatsu Massage

shiatsu massage image collage

Shiatsu is a massage technique from Japan. In fact, the word Shiatsu means ‘finger pressure’.

Despite its name, this massage therapy not only utilises the fingertips but also thumbs, palms, knees, forearms, elbows and the massage therapist can even use the feet. 

They apply pressure to the meridians or energy lines. 

This is done to ‘promote good health by stimulating the body’s energy flow.’

Sessions usually take from 40-60 minutes and commence with gentle stretching and manipulation to help relax and stimulate the movement of energy in the muscles. 

Pressure can either stimulate or calm the patient. The specific needs of the patient will determine the amount of pressure that needs to be applied.

In order to gain the most from this form of massage therapy, it is wise to wear thin, loose-fitting, comfortable clothing. 

Cotton and linen are recommended. You should also be aware that you will be lying on the floor. 

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There are many benefits of Shiatsu massage

Firstly it can help with pain management and alleviate pain.

It can also help the body heal from sports injuries. Shiatsu massage seeks to help a patient in a holistic way and tries to improve overall health.

It is a relaxing form of massage therapy and helps to relieve stress. 

When done on a regular basis, a patient should improve their mental and physical health, blood, lymphatic, and hormonal circulation, and help you to relax. It will also rid the body of toxins.

This is a relaxing gentle form of massage therapy and can be very beneficial to your overall health.


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Hot Stone Massage

How Does Hot Stone Massage Therapy Work?

Hot Stone Massage

River rocks, naturally flat and smooth stones, are generally used but any type of rock made of basalt will retain heat. 

These are the types of hot stones used for a Hot Stone Massage. 

The stones are immersed in water and heated until they’re within a specific temperature range. 

Then the stones are placed on key points of the body, or the massage therapist might hold the stones and use them during the therapeutic massage.

Subjected to the steady heat and pressure of the hot stones, your muscles relax and the massage therapist can apply deeper pressure if desired. 

This is also known as a deep tissue massage, which helps your body release toxins stored in your muscles. 

The same warmth and pressure also helps improve your circulation and calms the nervous system, both of which are essential to good health.

When you get a hot stone massage, the therapy begins with the application of oils to your body. 

These oils have benefits of their own and help the hot stones to glide smoothly along the muscles of your body. 

After the oil is placed on your body, you will be lying face down so that the massage therapist can use the hot stones on your back.

Your arms and legs will usually have lighter stones placed on them, while the heavier stones are placed on your back and torso.

Once the hot stones have done their work, penetrating and relaxing your muscles and putting you at total ease, the massage therapist may set them aside to massage your skin with his or her hands or with the stones themselves, stopping to work areas that are unusually tight or tense.

Sometimes the stones are then placed back on your body and allowed to rest for a short period of time. 

The therapy process will last between 60 and 90 minutes.

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Benefits of Hot Stone Massage Therapy

Hot stone massage is a relaxing experience that many people indulge in simply because it feels so nice. 

The warmth and gentle pressure of the hot stones are often considered to be comforting and a beneficial tool to relieve stress and anxiety.

Some of the most commonly accepted benefits of hot stone therapy include: 

  • Relieves pain
  • Improves circulation
  • Relieves muscle strain and tension
  • Eases osteoarthritis and arthritis pain
  • Reduces stress, anxiety and tension
  • Treats insomnia and helps alleviate depression

Deep tissue massage is also done more easily when using hot stone therapy because your muscles relax better. 

This makes hot stone massage perfect for people who prefer a lighter massage but could really use the benefits, including the release of toxins, that deep tissue massage offers. 

Because your muscles are so relaxed, the therapist can easily work them without applying deep pressure.


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The importance of Lymphatic Drainage Therapy


As a Naturopath consulting with guests from every corner of the globe.

I can say that very few people understand the lymphatic system’s role in the human body and its relationship to health and disease – and a small percentage have never even heard of the lymphatic system!


What is lymphatic drainage?

Picture yourself having a shower at home and think of the lymphatic system as your shower’s drainage system.

When the drains become blocked or congested with waste, drainage of water is poor.

It stagnates, backs up, pools and over time it becomes a rather toxic, smelly sludge.

As the shower drain can no longer clear itself, assistance is required to get the water and waste draining away freely again.

A similar scenario occurs in our body when our lymphatic drainage system becomes congested with waste products such as poorly digested fats, fat-soluble toxins, dead blood cells and pathogens.

This greatly overwhelms the immune system and over time we become more susceptible to colds and ‘flu’s, cellulite, allergies, skin conditions such as cystic acne, fluid retention and more life-threatening conditions such as cancer.

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As the lymphatic system has no pumps of its own to move lymphatic waste through the body for excretion via the colon and urinary system, it relies on us doing daily vigorous physical activity, where our muscular contractions act as pumps to assist movement of this fluid.

Other exercises like diaphragmatic breathing, yoga, nasal breathing exercises, regular deep belly-laughing, rebounding on a trampoline and dry skin brushing also activate the movement of lymph fluid.

Eating with the seasons and maintaining a well-hydrated body are important adjuncts alongside of these to encourage an optimally functioning lymphatic system.


What to expect

At Amchara Health Retreat in Gozo, our therapists are expertly trained in the art of Manual Lymphatic Drainage therapy, which is a specially-designed technique employed to retrain the smooth muscular units lining the lymphatic vessels, re-starting the natural flow of lymph fluid.

These treatments involve a very light touch on the skin, performed in a specific sequence to stimulate wave-like movements along the lines of lymphatic flow and are a deeply relaxing and enjoyable experience. Its rhythm and gentle movements make it so hard not to fall asleep!

These treatments are perfect for people who are sedentary, time-poor, unmotivated or are experiencing feelings of lethargy, heaviness, bloating, emotional ‘stuckness’ or general poor health.

After experiencing a Manual Lymphatic Drainage treatment you can expect to feel an overall sense of lightness, flow and ease, both physically and emotionally.

With further treatments, your skin begins to glow, acne can clear up, digestion improves, allergy symptoms ease and the appearance of puffiness and cellulite in your skin reduces, which is why models around the world line up for this treatment.

Adding a few of the above tips to your personal wellness routine, along with good hydration and seasonal eating will encourage optimal waste release from your lymphatic system, allowing you to feel and look your shining best.

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Full range of treatments available at Amchara Health Retreats 


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