The art of massage is probably as old as man himself, because to rob or hold an injured part is an instinctive reaction to the pain involved. The Chinese had a system of massage at least 5,000 years ago, as did the Hindus, the Japanese and the ancient Egyptians. In the more recent Greek dynasty it was used as an important part of the system of medicine.
In the early nineteenth century a Swede, Henreich Ling (l776 -1839) developed a scientific system of massage and exercise based on physiology.
Massage has both a physiological and a psychologoical effect. The various movements massage exerts, either individually or in combination , affect the
- Blood vessels
Some internal organs , depending on the position and pressure of the movements.
In general, the pressure movements result in a speeding up of the body’s physiology, while slow gentle movements has a soothing effect, calming the nerves and enabling the client to relax.
When effectively applied the soothing massage can often result in the client going to sleep.