This blog post article is the second in a series of ten articles on Deep Pressure Massage of the Neck.
Strokes and Techniques
This series of blog post articles on deep pressure techniques is not about recommending any one massage stroke (e.g., compression or effleurage) or proprietary technique over another. Every stroke and every technique has merit. Similarly, no one stroke or technique is the magic bullet. If it were, everyone would be doing that stroke or technique, and no others would exist. Learning to be a clinical orthopedic manual therapist involves learning how to choose which strokes to use for which client based on the needs of the client who is lying on the table at that point in time. Strictly adhering to cookbook techniques is not recommended. The thrust of these articles is to employ critical thinking based on a fundamental understanding of the anatomy, physiology, and kinesiology of the body, as well as an assessment and understanding of the pathomechanics of the client’s condition presented (previously covered in other blog post articles). Once that is accomplished, the goal is to then effectively and appropriately apply our manual therapy hands-on techniques.
Gravity and Body Weight for Deep Pressure Massage
Externally, the force of gravity acts on the mass of our bodies to create body weight. We can take advantage of our body weight to generate pressure into the client’s tissues by simply leaning into the client. Pressure derived this way is effectively free because it takes no effort on our part. For this reason, it should be used whenever possible. Because our core is the largest, most massive part of our bodies, we need to position it behind our contact and over the client.
Muscular Effort for Deep Pressure Massage
After we have generated as much force as possible via gravity and body weight, any additional force that we generate must come internally from the contraction of our musculature. This requires effort on our part, so it can be tiring. To minimize fatigue and wear and tear on our bodies, it is important always to use the largest muscles possible. This is especially important when it comes to deep tissue work. These larger muscles primarily are located proximally in the body.
This blog post article is one of ten articles on Deep Pressure Massage Technique to the Neck.
The ten articles are:
- Introduction to Deep Pressure Massage Technique to the Neck
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Using Bodyweight and Muscular Effort
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Overview
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Step by Step – Positioning
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Step by Step – Contacts
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Step by Step – Use Your Core
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Step by Step – Apply Pressure Perpendiculary
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Step by Step – Engage the Tissues
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Step by Step – Deep Stroking Massage
- Neck Deep Pressure Massage: Prone and Side-Lying
(Click here for the blog post article: Neck General Orthopedic Assessment: Range of Motion and Manual Resistance.)