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The Gaia Centre for Holistic Therapy,

17 Frederick Street, Loughborough,

Leicestershire, LE11 3BH


Tel: 01509 556101

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deep tissue massage

When a professional athlete tears a muscle or similar, it makes news. But anyone who plays sport or is involved in hard physical effort can be injured and the most vulnerable are children and adolescents, middle-aged athletes and women. More and more sports and fitness enthusiasts include massage as a part of their conditioning programmes. Deep Tissue Massage (DTM) is not just for the professional athlete or the person who is training for the Olympics. It is for everyone and needs to be looked at as a health benefit* and not a luxury. People just like you and me are including DTM as part of their regular healthy living programmes. Almost anyone can benefit from DTM, athlete or not.

Whenever you exercise or exert yourself heavily, small amounts of swelling occur in the muscle because of tiny tears. Therefore DTM, after the event, will help reduce the swelling, loosen tired, stiff muscles, help maintain flexibility, promote circulation (and thus more oxygen) to the muscle, and help to remove the waste products of energy generation. DTM will help speed up recovery time and alleviate any soreness. Below are descriptions of the more common forms of DTM.

Deep tissue techniques are also widely used in the recovery from injury or trauma, post surgical intervention, and for a wide variety of soft tissue problems that people suffer due to everyday living.


Calf DTMAthletes from most sports use DTM (Sports variant) as part of their training programme, before and after competition and tailored specifically for that person and their sport. In fact a number of athletes have attributed Sports Massage as a primary reason for their performances and longevity. For the athlete DTM can help improve performance, increase endurance, and help lower fatigue levels. By reducing fatigue, athletes can train better with longer and more effective workouts. When you choose to receive massage between your workouts, there is a high increase in your recovery time.

   Embody Guide to DTM

30, 60 and 90 minute treatments available



Most people who have not had a massage will start with this. It includes the full body and is a lighter form of DTM penetrating just the top layer of your muscles. It is probably the most common form of massage. Its main goal is to aid your relaxation and improve your circulation. The therapist applies oil to your skin and uses flowing strokes and kneading movements to relieve tension in your muscles. The treatment incorporates light and deep movements, allowing your mind and body to unwind through the release of tension from your muscles, also stimulating your body's circulatory systems. Long-term benefits can include an overall feeling of well-being and increased confidence. It may also help to improve your muscle tone and the appearance of your skin.

Embody Guide to Swedish Massage


These forms of massage refer to styles of treatment that employ a variety of Deep Tissue manipulation techniques to aid injury recovery. These styles get down into the muscles that are under the top layer of your skin. They tend to be deeper, slower, and more muscle specific.They are forms of massage that can help remedy specific acute and chronic conditions such as frozen shoulder, neck pain, migraine and sciatica. This type of massage is more vigorous and uses various movement strokes to loosen your muscles. It helps break patterns of tension, relieves chronic pain, including inflammation-related pain such as tendonitis, and improves range of motion.


Sports Massage therapy is a form of deep soft tissue manipulation that uses several specific techniques to treat physically active individuals, anyone involved in heavy-duty physical activities and sport performance who may be more vulnerable to injury because of the stresses placed on their body by exertion. Sports massage can relieve niggling aches and pains before they develop into more serious overuse injuries. It can also be great for post event relaxation and recovery, and help to relieve stress, tension, and fatigue.

Sports massage is generally used to provide rehabilitation from soft tissue injury, to maintain muscular conditioning and joint flexibility for competition, in order to maximise athletic potential. In addition it eases the effects caused by severe exercise such as myofascial shortening i.e. restrictions in your body's contractile (muscle) and non-contractile supportive (fascia) connective tissues. Therefore it can help keep your body flexible, aid your performance, and assist you in rehabilitation from injuries.

Sports massage can be used to help you prepare for physical activity, assist in the prevention of injuries, and aid in your recovery from physical exertion after competition or training. Although, as its name implies, Sports massage is a form more geared towards the athlete, it is equally effective in dealing with the problems caused by heavy work and the stresses of everyday living.

Embody Guide to Sports Massage


Commonly known benefits include relaxation, improved circulation and relief of muscle tension. Fitness enthusiasts/athletes will find that these forms of deep tissue massage help to improve their flexibility; muscles tend not to be as sore and stiff; it helps in their recovery time, and reduces the anxiety of athletic competition.

Conditions, which in general respond well to deep tissue techniques are: muscle pain and stiffness, strains, sprains, repetitive strain injuries, sore spots and muscle tension. It should be noted that even though these forms of massage will help certain injuries to heal you should also seek medical advice, as some injuries may need to be immobilised. Deep Tissue Massage is safe and effective, and if performed correctly should have few side effects.

* For more on the benefits of DTM see our Case Studies and a recent article re-Heart Health.

(...and associated forms)