Sure, a massage is a great way to relax and enjoy some tranquility — but could it also boost your health? It can, says Boris Prilutsky, a massage therapist who has studied massage's health benefits for more than four decades. Medical massages are a little different from therapeutic massages, and Prilutsky says that they work wonders: There are "more than 60 scientifically developed and clinically proven hands-on protocols" to improve back, neck and leg disorders. That's on top of the massage's ability to reduce stress and anxiety. We wanted to know more from the massage maestro.
How did you discover that medical massage could improve one's health?
During my career I have provided thousands of treatments for people who have suffered from sports-related injuries, chronic musculo-skeletal disorders, tension headaches, anxieties, etc. At least 80 percent of the cases had successful outcomes and sometimes I have been able to prevent surgery and/or corticosteroid injections.
How is the technique of a medical massage different from a therapeutic massage?
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Medical massage procedures are scientifically developed step-by-step protocols. The therapist must dedicate 50 percent of the procedure time to kneading techniques, trigger-point therapy techniques, compressions techniques, etc.
Do patients have control over whether they like a firmer/softer approach?
When receiving medical massage, patients have no real control to a firmer and/or softer approach; however, when applying initial pressure we request feedback if there is not enough pressure.
Who performs medical massage, doctors or therapists?
Licensed massage therapists who are trained how to perform protocols of medical massage can practice this methodology.