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I made a comment on the original post Is Swedish Dead and NO it is not!
Glad you enthusiasm as been revived.
very interesting comments and I agree entirely that deep relaxation is required for any real healing to begin and yes some nice effleurage, petrissage work can be very relaxing. However, there are any number of other factors that can be used to induce deep relaxation in the client.
One of the keys I find in my own work is to generate the state within myself that I wish my client to achieve and to use the model: pace, pace, lead. I also combine this with control of my own breathing in that I will synchronise my own breathing rate with the client for two or three minutes and then slow down my own rate... more often than not the client will slow down and breathe more deeply and rhythmically, especially if I give them instruction to do so.
In addition I concentrate on the tone and pace of my voice and on using words like 'relax', 'let go', 'release', 'sink' etc as I work. Normally within 5 to 10 minutes they are like putty using these approaches... which I might be using whilst doing subdermal MFR, cross hand stretches and so on which actually cause proper release in holding tissue.
Just pointing out that there are whole bunch of ways to get into that relaxed healing state other than stroking with lubrication (although of course that is valid too - just I mainly work without lubrication and I also want a deeply relaxed client in order to be effective)
Donna C. Agrinsonis, LMT said:I decided early on to make Swedish massage along with anything that remotely resembles it, the very basis of ANY massage that I do. So when clients ask for deep tissue I say fine so long as you understand that I am going to combine relaxation with the deep tissue. It is very rare that a client has problem areas over their entire body so I perform deep tissue/therapy where needed and relaxation/Swedish (Lomi Lomi or whatever relaxing technique I am pulling from that day) everywhere else. I also use Swedish massage to prepare the areas that need deeper work. So for me, any relaxation technique, especially Swedish, is my foundation and I build on that because I just feel that our bodies work together and should be treated as a whole, and I believe that a relaxed body is more able to begin the process of healing itself, regardless of what other techniques are used. That article was great and Swedish is definitely not dead.