Massage therapy is the manipulation of the body’s soft tissues, especially the skeletal muscles, for a therapeutic purpose by a trained professional. Massage therapy dates back to at least 2,700 BCE and has been used as a form of therapy in various cultures ranging from China to ancient Hawaii to modern day United States. In the U.S. massage therapy is regulated and therapists are licensed or certified by the state in which they practice. In Arizona, massage therapists must generally attend at least 750 hours of specific training in an accredited massage school and become licensed through the Arizona Board of Massage Therapy before providing massage for compensation.
While the Chinese knew the benefits of massage therapy for thousands of years, only in the last few decades has the therapeutic use of massage therapy become widespread in the United States. Nowadays, many people consider receiving massages an essential part of their health and fitness routine and depend on the skills of their massage therapist to assist them in managing a range of health issues such as back pain, anxiety, depression, fibromyalgia, muscle aches, nerve pain, digestive disorders and more.
Massage therapy improves circulation and lymphatic flow and enhances many people’s overall sense of wellbeing. Massage therapy has been scientifically shown to reduce stress hormones thereby mitigating many of their harmful side effects.
Licensed massage therapists in Arizona receive training in anatomy, physiology and pathologies of the musculoskeletal system and learn how to manipulate the body’s soft tissues in specific ways to address the needs of their clients. While massage therapists don’t specifically treat or diagnose disease their work can have a profound effect on your overall health, wellbeing and happiness.