The most important rule with massage and with self massage is to not irritate the nerves. Click here to review this most important point.
You’ve probably had someone rub the top of your shoulders when you’re sitting down. Sometimes when they rub/massage across the top of your shoulders it can be painful.
There is a simple rule for your body – where it hurts, it needs help. What is the help that is needed is the big question. Think of this, when your body hurts, it is telling you that it needs help. Hurting can be a sunburn, a cut on your skin, if you sprain your ankle, or when someone rubs across the top of your shoulders. In each of these examples of pain the solution will be different. Even though the solution will be different in these examples I just gave, the same principle holds true in each of these examples – where your body hurts, it needs help.
If you press on a muscle with tremendous pressure, it will hurt. That is a natural and healthy response by the muscle to tremendous pressure. If you or someone else presses into a muscle with light, moderate or fairly (but not greatly) substantial pressure and that muscle has pain, then that muscle needs help.
You may think that it is counter intuitive to keep pressing into a muscle if that muscle hurts to your massage pressure. You may think that a muscle that hurts to mild or moderate pressure should be left alone; to not keep pressing on that muscle because it is painful. Though the opposite is true: if it hurts to a mild or moderate pressure, then don’t leave it alone; help that muscle in some way.
Never have a massage pressure be painful. An effective massage pressure is uncomfortable and acceptable. What you just read is a very important rule when it comes to receiving massage or doing self massage. That very important rule is to not have pain when you massage a muscle. That rule says that to be effective you can have an uncomfortable feeling and have the amount of uncomfortableness be acceptable. Acceptable doesn’t mean that you’ll tolerate it if you need to. Acceptable means acceptable; that the pressure is not painful.
It’s like Goldilocks’ porridge. She didn’t want her porridge to be too hot or too cold; medium was just right for her. My opinion is that massage is the same way. This applies to receiving massage and you doing your own self massage. Not too painful (not too hot) and not so comfortable that there is no discomfort (not too cold). Do your self massage this way; uncomfortable and really acceptable. It’s like running a marathon. Don’t run too fast or you’ll tire out and not finish. Don’t run too slow or you may not finish for a long, long time.
Let’s get back to the topic – if a muscle hurts when you press on it, that muscle needs help. How to help that muscle and how much help are the questions that need to be answered. This is where my service comes in. The word doctor comes from the Latin word meaning to teach. I am here to teach you how to help yourself when you have pain. I am here to teach you how to properly, effectively and easily do self massage.
If a muscle hurts to mild or moderate pressure or even a deeper pressure that is not excessive, then it needs help. I’ve found that massage and self massage are extremely effective in helping tight, sore muscles return to healthy, relaxed muscles. These healthy muscles are not overly sensitive to moderate or a slightly deeper pressure than moderate.