Not too long ago, our lives dramatically changed. Some of us had to stop working while others had no choice but to continue working. Most of us now are back to our routines, as we navigate this new normal. As a touch therapist, it has been quite challenging to alter the way I interact with my clients. Creating an intimate and therapeutic space, while practicing responsible distancing, has its limitations. There are some clients who have been waiting patiently to get back on the table, while others hesitant to relax into the experience. All I can say is, YOU DO YOU. Listen to your body. Allow yourself the time to come back into this newly transformed world. When you are ready, know that protocols are in place to ensure a safe experience. But if you are still unsure, here are a few things that you can do for yourself to relax the body, calm the mind and soothe the spirit.
For many people, a specific scent brings them back to their childhood. For some, the aroma calms the mind. If you enjoy using essential oils, this is something that you may enjoy. Try making your own unique blends by using cotton swabs. Add a few drops of one essential oil per swab and see what works together. Use 3 tbsp of a carrier oil (grapeseed, fractionated coconut) and add a maximum of 18 drops. (6+6+6 OR 7+7+4)
- Relaxing: Patchouli, Lavender, Orange
- Respiratory: Pine, Thyme, Eucalyptus
- Pain relief: Lavender, Marjoram, Mandarin
- Energizing: Basil, Lemongrass, Marjoram
- Muscular: Rosemary, Pine, Lemon
*if you only want to use one scent, these are some of the most common essential oils: Lavender (relaxation), Rosemary (muscle tension release), Peppermint (headache & cooling of muscles), Eucalyptus (breathe easy) and Rose (pregnancy)
Try to take a few moments each day to do some daily stretches. One of the biggest body issues that I encounter, is lack of stretching. These are some of the stretches that I suggest to my clients!
- Cobra: this stretch strengthens the wrists, arms and back. Its chest-opening action helps with “office slump”, while freeing the lungs and opening the heart. This is also an energizing pose that helps reduce stress and fatigue.
- Butterfly: Sit with your legs bent and with the soles of your feet touching- this stretch helps to open the hips and thighs and to improve flexibility. Loosening and lengthening the inner thigh muscles helps with stability and balance.
- Wall pose: Lie down with your legs up the wall. This powerful and restorative pose helps with sending blood flow to your core. Eases stress, restores sleep, calms nerves, relieves swollen ankles, varicose veins and headaches and improves digestion
- Pigeon: a perfect pose to release tension and maintain hip flexibility. This pose also helps stretch the lower lumbar region of the spine and your glutes.
- Fish: place a yoga block or thick towel under your sacrum- stretching out the front body. This stretch allows the body to relax while the stretch is happening. It lets you to focus on the breath and feel the sensations around your body.
- Hot bath: I cannot stress enough how this really works. If you have access to a tub, use it. The heat will relax your muscles and you will feel a lot better. For a more involved experience, use essential oils (6-8 drops in the water). Add Epsom salts to reduce stress and alleviate any pain or soreness. Once the body
has been fully relaxed, stretching will be easier to do!
- Hot/Cold Treatment: the cold will reduce inflammation and the heat will help promote blood flow and relax the muscles. Alternating between the two helps reduce exercise-induced muscle pain. Never use extreme heat and never put ice directly on the skin
- Hot shower: focus all the pressure of the water on specific areas to relieve sore muscles and knots.
THERAPY BALL MASSAGE
Use a tune up therapy ball (or tennis or golf)- stand against a wall, with a ball placed between your spine and shoulder blade. Move up and down for a minute or two; then repeat on the other side. You may use two balls at the same time. Using one at a time allows for more focus. Alternatively, lie on the floor, with the ball in the same place, and roll back and forth. It is easier to control the pressure if you are using the wall.
Amy Vasiliou is a Registered Massage Therapist (RMT) at Énergie EnCorps with 18 years of experience and a member of the AMPQ since 2000. Amy received her Neuromuscular Massage Therapy training at the Natural Health Consultant Institute. She has had diverse experience working within various branches of the health and wellness industry. Amy is a firm believer in the holistic approach to healing. By treating the “whole” body and understanding that everything is connected, true progress can begin. In this way, the client gains a deeper sense of their own relationship with their body.
To book an appointment with Amy, phone us in 514-505-9642 or click this link! https://bit.ly/2WOjjR5