A classic massage treatment that incorporates heated stones is called Hot Stone Massage. Not just any ordinary stones are used in this massage but stones that effectively absorb and retain heat like basalt stones (volcanic black rocks). The stones must also be smooth and has no rough edge.
Before your appointment in the day spa, the stones are first sanitized by the therapist who then heats them in water with temperature of 120 to 150 degrees. The client’s body is first applied with oil so that the stone may glide smoothly on the skin. The heated stones may be placed on particular body parts such as spine, palm of hands, belly and between the toes to allow energy flow in the body. The therapist may also use the stone instead of his or her hands in massaging the body. Cold stones are used instead of hot stones when the muscles are inflamed or injured.
The stones used in this massage treatment are of diverse sizes and shapes. In case you feel the stones are excessively hot, then tell your therapist immediately. Since the heat of the stones is mainly accountable for relaxing and easing out the strained muscles, the therapist need not exert too much pressure in massaging.
In general, hot stone massage benefits the body by promoting absolute relaxation of tissues and muscles, easing stress in the body, releasing toxins from the body, relieving pain and aches, enhancing circulatory functions and calming the mind. Hot Stone Massage also assists in treating arthritis, anxiety, insomnia and depression.
In order to have the most effective hot stone massage treatment, make sure that you do not take a heavy meal prior to your session. Get to the spa at a much earlier time so your body will be able to relax even before the massage session. If there is enough time, stay at the sauna, hot tub or steam bath facility of the day spa. Massage treatments are most often performed in the nude but the body is draped during the entire session. If you are not comfortable wearing nothing, inform the therapist and choose clothing you are comfortable wearing but will not obstruct the execution of the massage.
Let your body relax further by doing deep regular breaths. Even when a sensitive area is touched, remember not to hold your breath as this may tighten up the muscles which is counterproductive in the massage treatment. Should you notice anything improper during the massage, you can tell the therapist to stop.
The heat from the stones has a sedative effect on the body’s nervous system so it will be likely that you will feel lightheaded or dizzy after the session. If this happens, slowly get off the table and drink extra amount of liquids, water preferably.
Keep in mind that any massage treatment including hot stone massage will greatly benefit the body in due course. Massage has cumulative healing effects, thus the frequent you receive massage treatment, the better and the quicker your body will respond to the therapy.