Lomilomi—Hawaiian for "rub rub"—is described by teacher Aunty Margaret Machado as “the loving touch—a connection between heart, hand, and soul with the source of all life.” This system of massage utilizes very large, broad movements. Two-handed, forearm, and elbow application of strokes, which cover a broad area, is characteristic of lomilomi. Oils are used in the application of cross-fiber friction techniques.
Holotropic means “moving toward wholeness.” Developed by Dr. Stanislav Grof, a psychiatrist working with people in uncommon states of consciousness, and by Christina Grof, a transpersonal teacher, this is a simple, yet powerful technique for self-exploration and healing based on combined insights from modern consciousness research, depth psychology, and perennial spiritual practices.
Movement education and deep-tissue bodywork are the major components of Hellerwork, named for founder Joseph Heller. Emphasizing vertical realignment of the body and release of chronic stress and tension, Hellerwork involves 11 sessions of 1.5 hours each. In each session, one hour is devoted to bodywork and 30 minutes to movement therapy. The therapist also uses dialogue to explore emotional factors that may be contributing to tension in the client’s physical make-up.
Geriatric massage, with its focus on the elderly, addresses the psychological and physiological aspects of aging and its associated diseases. Bodywork, often limited to a shorter time span, is often performed in residential care facilities. Click here to find a geriatric massage practitioner.
Originated by George P. Kousaleos, Core is a myofascial, postural, and structural somatic therapy combining massage techniques with client-assisted movement. Normally lasting ten sessions, there are four phases of core body therapy organized according to the level or layer of fascia, muscle, and supporting soft tissues that are manipulated: core massage, core extrinsic, core intrinsic, and core integration.
A hands-on, drugless, noninvasive method of relieving muscle-related pain, Bonnie Prudden Myotherapy emphasizes a speedy, cost-effective recovery and active client participation for long-term relief. Myotherapy relaxes muscles, improves circulation, and alleviates pain in all parts of the body while increasing strength, flexibility, coordination, stamina, and energy. It improves posture, gait, sleep patterns, and work and play performance. The first 90-minute session includes an extensive and vital history.
Developed by Janet Mentgen, RN, Healing Touch is an energy-based therapeutic approach to healing. Healing Touch uses touch to influence the energy system, thus affecting physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health, as well as healing.
The goal of Healing Touch is to restore harmony and balance in the energy system to help the person to self-heal. The quality and impact of the healing is influenced by the relationship between the giver and receiver. Click here to find a Healing Touch practitioner.
Developed by Russian-born Israeli educator Moshe Feldenkrais, this method establishes new connections between the brain and body through movement reeducation. One of two formats of instruction is used: awareness through movement, and functional integration.
Awareness through movement classes are group sessions in which the teacher verbally guides students through repatterning.
In the one-on-one functional integration session, a teacher uses hands-on manipulation to guide the student toward new movement patterns.
Techniques that use deep-tissue/deep-muscle massage are administered to affect the sub-layer of musculature and fascia. These techniques require advanced training and a thorough understanding of anatomy and physiology. The muscles must be relaxed in order to effectively perform deep-tissue massage, otherwise tight surface muscles prevent the practitioner from reaching deeper musculature. It helps with chronic muscular pain and injury rehabilitation, and reduces inflammation-related pain caused by arthritis and tendinitis. It is generally integrated with other massage techniques.
Craniosacral therapy (CST) is a gentle, noninvasive method of evaluating and enhancing the function of a physiological body arrangement called the craniosacral system. Developed by John E. Upledger, DO, OMM, this manual therapy enhances the body’s natural healing processes and has proven effective in treating a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and dysfunction. The roots of this therapy are in cranial osteopathy, developed by Dr. William G. Sutherland.