A potted history of Hot Stones...
It is said that the Chinese used hot stones more than 2,000 years ago for healing work, as well as being used in Europe, Egypt, Hawaii and Africa. Native Americans used hot stones in their sweat lodges and traditional Ayuvedic techniques in India have also incorporated heated stones for healing.
The iron rich basalt stones that I use in my Hot Stones treatments are naturally smoothed by river water. These flat igneous stones have been picked for their size, shape and suitability to be the best possible tools for a Hot Stones treatment. The stones are heated to a safe temperature within water and the basalt helps to retain the heat. This coupled with the pressure from the stone massage helps to improve blood and lymph circulation and release toxins from the muscles, whilst allowing fresh oxygen and blood to flow to the area.
Further Benefits of Hot Stones Massage
Hot Stones Massage may also help with the following:
- Back, neck and shoulder tension such as from gardening, sitting at a desk or lifting heavy items.
- Range of motion and flexibility e.g. from a frozen shoulder, helping to reduce some of the pain.
- Enhanced relaxation and better quality sleep.
- Reduction of stress, tension and anxiety, enabling a boost to your immune system.
- Multiple Sclerosis, helping to reduce muscle pain.
- Cancer symptoms such as fatigue, pain and nausea. Hot Stones can also be very therapeutic for carers of loved ones with cancer.
- As a preventative to help maintain a general sense of wellbeing.
Hot Stones can be used as part of a massage technique directly onto the skin, with the massage oil applied first. The stones can also be placed on areas of the body on top of a towel or sheet to correlate with specific regions such as the Chakras, which represent energy centres in the body. Benefits of heat from placement and pressure on other areas simultaneously can then be combined. In my Hot Stones treatments I like to fuse hand, stones and stone placement for an integrative healing experience.
If you've not had a Hot Stones treatment before, try it out and be amazed at the sense of deep relaxation that you are likely to feel afterwards. Imagine the effects of having a massage and a sauna combined..
Sarah Holloway offers Hot Stones Massage at The Open Door Complementary Health Centre in Lewes, East Sussex. She also gives Hot Stones treatments at Yoga retreats in the south east of England - if you'd like her to give treatments at your Retreat Centre she'd love to hear from you, so please get in touch.