What is there to know about Swedish massage?


Whether you are a regular, or it’s your first time getting a Swedish full-body massage, there are a few things you should know about this type of massage therapy.


What is it?

As one of the best known massage therapies, Swedish massage is widely recognized and chosen by the majority of people requiring a massage session. Why is that? Because Swedish massage is one of the most comprehensive ways of relaxing the whole body, as well as the mind.

Swedish massage combines the principles of other types of massages (such as the deep-tissue massage or sports massage) because it may use many or all 5 of the basic massage techniques. This means, that during a Swedish massage, the therapist can use effleurage, tapotement, petrissage, friction and vibration to release muscle tension and achieve the desired result.

Why Swedish?

Contrary to Asian-style massages, Swedish massage is founded on the anatomy and physiology concepts of the Western world. The origins of Swedish massage are somewhat contradictory.

Some people attribute its emergence to Per Henrik Ling, a Swedish physiologist, for the system of massage and medical gymnastics that he has developed, known as ‘The Swedish Movement Treatment’.

Nonetheless, many say, that Per Henrik Ling is not the one, who should be actually credited. Johan Georg Mezger, a Dutch practitioner, was the one to adopt the French names, which describe the basic techniques used in a Swedish massage and systemized this massage type.

Another interesting fact is that, while this massage type is called Swedish massage in the English and Dutch speaking countries (and in Hungary), in Sweden it is called a “classic massage”.


How does it work?

Before starting the actual massage session, there is an initial consultation, which consists of questions about the health condition of the client (for e.g. if he/she has suffered any injuries or has any medical condition). During a Swedish Full Body Massage, the therapist will massage the back, the legs, the arms, the neck and the shoulders of the client. We each have our own style and order of doing this, but, for the therapy to be as successful as possible, communication is vital. Thus, clients should always tell us if they need us to concentrate on a certain area, or in case the pressure is too light or too firm. A Swedish massage session usually lasts between 50 and 60 minutes, depending on the needs of the clients.