Massage therapy is often regarded as an extravagance, a luxury, or an expense awaiting justification. Few actually regard a massage as a viable form of medical treatment. But it is. Massage therapy is actually the simplest and oldest form of medicine. There are references to massage in Chinese medical literature dating back to 2,700 B.C.
Indeed, Hipporcates, the father of Western medicine wrote in the fifth century B.C., that “the physician must be experienced in many things, but most assuredly in rubbing… for rubbing can bind a joint that is too loose, and loosen a joint that is too rigid.” I, for one, think that Hippocrates was on to something there.
Think for one moment, your very first reaction when you stub your toe, hit your funny bone, or bump your head. Instinctively, you place your hand over the injured area. Likewise, what is your first reaction when a cramp in your calf muscle jolts you out of an otherwise sound sleep in the dead of night?
Immediately, you get your hands on the muscle and feverishly rub! These very natural, genetically programmed reactions comprise the very core of massage therapy itself. An appreciation for the simple notion that human touch promotes healing.