As the name suggests, a hot stone massage is a massage given through heated basalt stones of various shape, sizes and weights. The stones are immersed in heated water and left so that they can absorb the heat and become heated themselves. Many people find the massage given through hot stones very comforting and relaxing. Also since the stones are hard, the therapist can use the stones in specific problem areas. A heavier stone can be used in places where more pressure is required.
A hot stone massage is generally used for relaxation purposes. The massage is especially beneficial for those who tend to have cold or chilly feet. The shot stone massage is also very light and therefore well suited for those who do not like intense massages or deep muscle pressure usually given in a traditional massage, but want to relieve the tension in their muscles using a very light massage.
A hot stone massage can relive you of poor circulation by heating specific areas where the veins may be depressed. It also helps in curing back aches and other back problems. The heat relaxes the muscles and allows the built up tension to be released.
The pain caused in arthritis can also be remedied through this massage. Hot stone massage has also proved advantageous for those suffering from mild or chronic neurotic disorders like depression, stress, insomnia and anxiety.
The good thing about using basalt stones is that because they are well rounded, they are smooth and take in heat easily. They also retain heat for a longer time and feel excellent when placed on the body. The stones can also be heated in special heating units that are constructed in various spas. The thermostat however, has to be constantly adjusted because the stones should not be too hot or too cold.
To make sure that the stones are of the right temperature, the massage therapist will always hold the stones first to ascertain the temperature. The therapist will also ask you if the heat bothers you. Since every one has their own comfort level of dealing with temperature, it is always important to confirm the comfort of the person receiving the massage.
During the therapy, the stones are used in two manners. One is by laying the heated stones under a layer of fabric and then asking the client to lie down on them and the other one is by directly placing the stones on the client’s body.
In a typical therapy session, the stones are placed on either sides of the spine and on the energy chakras, which are actually points of concentration of life force within the body. Along with laying these stones, the therapist also keeps massaging the hands, legs and torso of the client with strokes from a heated and oiled basalt s