Clinical massage therapy has a different focus of treatment. It’s designed to help soft tissue to maintain, develop, augment or rehabilitate the patient’s physical function. Clinical massage therapy can improve the function of joints and muscles, aid in the healing process, increase metabolism and improve circulation.
Clinical massage is focused on a cause of pain and the correction of the cause to correct and decrease pain and distortion of the body.
Extra hours of education are required to be able to do clinical massage. Often clinical massage is used to recover from some form of injury or trauma. Clinical massage addresses the deeper muscles of the body and the alignment and balance of front to back muscles and side to side.
The therapist has extensive knowledge of anatomy and physiology and addresses the range of motion limitations by using a variety of modalities. Heat may be applied along with cold packs or hydrotherapy to relax the muscles and make them more responsive to the work.
The benefits of clinical massage are to release the muscles which have been traumatized through repetitive action or by accident, bringing them back to a neutral state. Range of motion of the joint or muscles is also included. Increased circulation helps to flush stagnant lactic acids which have accumulated in the muscles creating the pain. A healthy muscle doesn’t hurt. After releasing the tight-shortened muscles, a slow stretch is often performed to elongate them, bringing them back to their original flexibility.