Everyone knows the holidays bring with them a special kind of stress. Shopping for last-minute presents. Making travel plans to visit loved ones. Spending long hours at the office in order to take a few extra days off. Even though you’re busy thinking about others, it’s so important that you care for yourself. Remember what flight attendants always tell you before an airline flight: “Be sure to put on your own mask first before assisting other passengers.”
Well, in this case, the ‘mask’ that might save your sanity is a stress-relieving massage.
Many people think of massages as merely luxuries, or indulgences someone gives you as a gift. But really, massages are great ways to relieve the crazy amounts of stress we face during the winter holiday season. I love talking to Madi Camilo, Massage Department manager here at the Tiffani Kim Institute, because she always reminds me–and the rest of us at TKI – just why massages during this time of year are so wonderful.
“The cold just brings out a whole lot more drama,” Madi says, “and we’re here to help deal with that stress. One thing we really focus on are customized massages.” If you don’t have a full 60 minutes or more, Madi and her team will do ‘target massages’ for 30 minutes ($50), which allow therapists to focus on whatever body part troubles you most. “I love that ‘on-the-go, I’m-trying-to-relieve-stress’ massage,” she says.
If it’s true overall tension relief you’re after, Madi recommends the ‘Serenity Stone’ massage where smooth stones are warmed to 135 degrees and used as tools in a Swedish-style massage. The ‘Therapeutic Stone’ version is more intense for a more rehabilitative effect. A”Deep Tissue Massage” is great for anyone who deals with chronic tension (sounds like MOST of us!), while the “Aromatherapy” version adds essential oils to the mix for therapeutic benefit.
No matter what your issue, a good therapist will ask questions first and then suggest a massage treatment that’s good for what ails you.
And while massages certainly feel great,many also bring with them real health benefits. Among them, says Madi: “Improved circulation. We’re actually stimulating the (body’s) nerve receptors to wake up. We’re promoting all-over clarity. Massage also stimulates the lymph nodes and helps drain extra fluid from the limbs.”
With benefits like these, it’s a wonder more of us don’t take advantage of these stress relievers more often. I, for one, plan to do it much more often during the holidays and into the New Year.