Pam’s Massage Modalities
|Deep tissue massage
My massage is a unique blend of the following types of bodywork I have studied. Each person is different, and so I use the techniques that work for you, on that day.
Classic table massage, using oil and 5 basic strokes (effleurage, petrissage, kneading, compression, and tapotement), encourages the circulation of blood and lymph in the body and brings relaxation to muscles.
This is scientifically designed bodywork to improve muscle health, especially in athletes. Muscle tissues that have been overworked, injured, or need stretching can really benefit. There are specific ways to approach injuries or conditions such as tennis elbow or runner’s knee. Different approaches are used when the muscles are at rest and cold than when the body has just done a tiring workout.
This is typically more of an alert, conscious, partnership kind of massage than a relaxation-only massage.
Deep Tissue Work
Using focused attention, we can go deeper into areas of stiffness or injury or disuse in order to unlock the points where your body has learned the habit of remaining tight and guarded. I am particularly careful to work at someone’s “threshold” — the place at which you can still receive the deep work in a helpful way, without tensing up against it. I am NOT a fan of “no pain, no gain” — I believe in “SOME pain, some gain.” If I am working too deeply, then your body will brace and tighten against the pressure, which creates pain and an impasse. If I am working too lightly, the gains are only superficial. Finding the balance between “deep enough” and “sensitively and slowly enough” is a learning process that becomes more and more of a conscious partnership over time with each individual client. My style of deep tissue work is not usually painful or difficult to receive, but has created lasting relief.
The first style of bodywork I studied was this classic Japanese bodywork done on a mat — a combination of the mindset of Chinese acupuncture and Asian massage techniques. It opened my mind to profound awareness of how the energetic body and the physical body are linked. In Shiatsu, pressure, stretches, and other massage techniques are used in specific ways to energize, calm, and release energy pathways, clearing the way to greater health. I no longer give pure Shiatsu massages, but the knowledge and approach are invaluable in framing the massages that I do give.
This old style of bodywork from a mountain village in Afghanistan was brought to the United States in the late 1970s and is best known on the West Coast. Received clothed, on a mat, it is a constantly shifting, intuitively chosen series of dynamic stretches and body manipulations that result in extremely deep relaxation and rejuvenation. I am not fully trained in Breema, but I use the 9 Principles of Breema and some techniques in my work.
A more purely energy-style of bodywork, polarity therapy is experienced fully clothed, mostly lying face up on a massage table. The main motion is “rocking” the body, with a specific series of hand positions for the body, arms, and legs. It is deeply relaxing and balancing. I do not do pure polarity therapy, but incorporate its techniques and perspectives into my work.
Honestly — at the end of the day — a good laugh can be the best tension reliever! If you love to laugh, then come right on in … one of my bad jokes, properly applied, is like a healing poultice for the soul. (Or so I’ve been told … and if you have read this far, I salute you!)
I thank ALL of my teachers and clients for what they have taught me about receiving and giving bodywork.