Hot stone massage therapy is a type of massage that uses special stones, such as basalt, covered in massage oil that are heated to about 120 degrees Fahrenheit. The heat that is being released by the stones, once placed on the body, helps in relaxing the inner muscles.
Hot stone massage is a form of therapy that is used for the relaxation of tensed muscles, enhancement of blood circulation and for stress relief.
River rocks are commonly used in hot stone massages as they have been naturally smoothed over time by the river current. The smooth surface of the stone will prevent damage to the skin. Basalt stones and many river rocks are high in iron content which retains the heat longer. The massage therapist stores their stones in fresh water and heats them up in an electrical heating appliance. Heated massage stones may also be transported in an insulated container if the therapist frequently to their clients place to perform the therapy.
Volcanic stones are also used in hot stone massage therapy due to their outstanding ability to maintain heat. This property of volcanic stones also sees them used in sauna baths and in some water purifiers. These stones are generally smooth which is great to use in a hot stone massage therapy. As with other types of stones used in hot stone massage therapy, the therapists are extra careful of these stones as they may become too hot if left unattended.
Massage oils are also important in a hot stone massage therapy and the most commonly used are grape seed, olive, lavender and rose oils. Oils are used to lubricate the kneading and rubbing techniques. The scents of essential oils are important in the enhancement of the result of the therapy.
The hot stone massage therapy is also effective in flushing out excess toxin from your body. It has been a popular aid in treating several different types of diseases and disorders, like:
- Chronic muscle pains
- Anxiety, depression and stress
- Back pain, lower back pain, constant muscle cramps
- Sleep disorder
Whilst hot stone massage is for stress relief, it still has its limitations. It is not offered or suitable for everyone, specifically to hypertensive people. People who have .high blood pressure should not go through a hot stone massage as the heated stones may affect their blood pressure.