It took a while for the US to catch up with Europe and Asia when it came to the health benefits of Massage Therapy, but today pretty much any American you ask can tell you which type of massage they prefer: Deep Tissue, Swedish, Thai, etc. We know how utterly fantastic we feel after a thorough rub down or stretch session. All the tension from driving, sitting or standing long hours during work and the stress of getting kids to and from all of their events can take a toll on our bodies, but just one or two hours of Massage Therapy can dissolve the worst head or body ache life can throw at you. But did you know how good Massage is for kids and teens? They are usually much more active than we adults are. And although they have youth on their side, they experience trauma on a different level. Growth spurts, permanent teeth coming in, carrying heavy backpacks, instruments or sports equipment, poor posture habits in school and while video gaming can all contribute to a much more agitated child. Massage Therapy is a body awareness tool as well as a relaxation tool. When the body/mind connection is severed from years of stress, poor body habits and years of pain due to intensive sports, massage can help to re-establish that. Hands on a body can bring back the brains' focus to an area that had been neglected in the body. Just try it. When you see your child slouching at the table, instead of telling them to sit up straight, press your hand firmly on the back and they will automatically sit up straighter. Many of us expect a lot out of our kids' athletic performance and don't even realize that kids, too, need to recoup after hours of exhausting work outs and competitions. It is so rewarding as a Massage Therapist to see kids who come in tired out and stressed from sports and life pressures leave with a smile and hug you and thank you. It completely changes their outlook on life. We all need to recharge our battery once in a while and children are no exception. In fact, they may need it more than we do. And, armored with the information that Massage sessions can bring, they will grow up knowing that it is okay to need help, to recharge and moreover, they'll have the tool set to know how to do it. Massage can be helpful with anger management issues, anxiety and depression, insomnia, restless leg syndrome, and tendon, ligament and muscular issues brought on by over-exertion. It's not that old- school chopping and brisk rubbing of the Rocky era. It is genuine therapy that treats body, mind, soul and heart. We have many talented and highly trained professionals in Southwest Florida, so schedule a massage session for your son or daughter today. Because as I'm sure any parent would agree, when your child is happier, we are happier. For further information regarding the positive effects of Massage for your child, check out the Touch Research Institute's website and click on Massage Therapy Studies in Children. Tiffany Fussell LMT, CMT, CAMTC
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