Massage is the practice of soft tissue manipulation with physical, functional, and in some cases psychological purposes and goals.The word comes from the French massage “friction of kneading,” or from Arabic massa meaning “to touch, feel or handle” or from Latin massa meaning “mass, dough”.An older etymology may even have been the Hebrew me-sakj “to anoint with oil”.Massage therapy can help to relax your stress in many ways.
In distinction the ancient Greek word for massage was anatripsi. Massage involves acting on and manipulating the body with pressure – structured, unstructured, stationary, or moving – tension, motion, or vibration, done manually or with mechanical aids. Target tissues may include muscles, tendons, ligaments, skin, joints, or other connective tissue, as well as lymphatic vessels, or organs of the gastrointestinal system. Massage can be applied with the hands, fingers, elbows, forearm, and feet.
There are over eighty different recognized massage modalities. The most cited reasons for introducing massage as therapy have been client demand and perceived clinical effectiveness.
In professional settings massage involves the client being treated while lying on a massage table, sitting in a massage chair, or lying on a mat on the floor. The massage subject may be fully or partly unclothed. Parts of the body may be covered with towels or sheets.
Ancient and medieval times writings on massage have been found in many ancient civilizations including Rome, Greece, India, Japan, China, Egypt and Mesopotamia. A biblical reference from C.493 BC documents daily massage with olive oil and myrrh as a part of the beauty regimen of the wives of Xerxes. (Esther 2:9-12) Hippocrates wrote in 460 BC that “The physician must be experienced in many things, but assuredly in rubbing.”
The ancient Chinese book called Huangdi Neijing by the Yellow Emperor recommended “massage of skin and flesh.” The technique of massage abortion, involving the application of pressure to the pregnant abdomen, has been practiced in Southeast Asia for centuries. One of the bas reliefs decorating the temple of Angkor Wat in Cambodia, dated circa 1150, depicts a demon performing such an abortion upon a woman who has been sent to the underworld. This is believed to be the oldest known visual representation of abortion. In Romania some illnesses were treated by a massage in which the client was trodden on by a tame bear.