May 16, 2012

Spinal Massage

When I first learned massage, touching the spine was a no-go. We were learning Swedish and body mechanics, using long sweeping effleurages with neural glide returns. Those bumps in the center of the back were a no-hand zone.

As we filled in the air spaces between our ears with practice and more practice, the “danger” zones were opened up. Miracle of miracles, we could actually touch the spine, rub it, knead it, run up and down its lamina grooves looking for knots and twisted vertebra. Not only would that not kill people, it made them much better faster.

I have here and there taken a good spine class, such as Erik Dalton’s Myoskeletal Alignment, and my respect and fascination for the spinal massage has grown. There is a tapping massage for the spine, a lymphatic spinal massage, a Thai yogic spinal massage, etc.

Admittedly, I have a secret. When I was clunking around in my overshoes as a newbie therapist, I could not shake the idea that the spine had a lot to do with energy and fatigue. My first few massages for fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome clients, I felt the need to pump up my spine skills. A good bit of what seemed stuck in these people seemed to go on at the spine.

But I had a sectional knowledge of the spine. Segments, dermatomes, myotomes, etc, but not a full-length spinal massage that I felt integrated all of the areas and balanced them. Thus my secret.

Looking for a full-length spinal massage I could use for total integration, I found a little book about massage for serious systemic diseases – based on hypnotic readings by Edgar Cayce. Yes, the fellow who would sleep and read people’s illnesses, recommend treatments and predict the future.

Cayce had a lot to say about massage for serious disease. He did so many intuitive readings over several decades that the techniques were collected in a book, “Edgar Cayce’s Massage Hydrotherapy & Healing Oils.”

The massages described therein tend to be small, gentle circles either side of the spine in directions to increase or decrease energy to different organs and zones. One is a massage from the brain to spine to the plexuses, a massage I find very helpful for chronic pain. Another draws with circle massage from the plexuses up the spine.

The styles of massage are food for thought, and quite handy when I feel a spinal massage is in order. Another way to see and heal the body.

Authored by Sue Peterson


Lovelyn said...

I'll look into Cayce’s book it sounds interesting. I've never really done spinal work before, but I do feel like it is an area that needs to be addressed.

docsimon said...

what is the work of craniosacral therapy in the process of massage

natural medicine Waterloo said...

Massage is important to relieve the body of pain from stress and pressure.