Scientific research demonstrates the positive impacts of massage
Great news for massage therapy training program students at Branford Hall: Research shows that massage is beneficial for far more than relaxation.
In fact, there’s good evidence that massage may actually help improve health.
What that means to aspiring massage pros: With massage therapy being taken more seriously by the medical community, there may be increasing opportunities to use your skills in therapeutic capacities.
Figures from the federal government’s Bureau of Labor Statistics bear this out. That agency forecasts that the massage therapy field is expected to grow at a much faster rate than other occupations between now and 2022 – up to 23%, in fact.
Let’s take a look at three studies that show the benefits of massage.
1. Immunity support
Believe it or not, a single session of Swedish massage may increase immunity, according to researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.
Doctors in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences studied the effects of Swedish massage on immune function. By measuring study participants’ levels of different biochemicals after light-touch massage and Swedish massage, scientists found that individuals who received Swedish massage demonstrated positive, measurable effects on their immune systems.
But that’s not all. The researchers speculated that repeated sessions of Swedish massage could potentially be therapeutic for autoimmune and inflammatory conditions.
2. Stability booster
Could massage actually decrease fall risks in the elderly people?
That’s what some scientists believe. Researchers at Auburn and Samford Universities in Alabama found a link between massage therapy treatments and improved stability in older people.
So massage therapists should know that when they’re working with older people, they may actually be helping them avoid falls and the accompanying mobility issues that may arise after broken hips or similar injuries. (How’s that for a “feel good” factor?)
3. Peace of mind
Massage may also help promote mental health.
The University of Miami has conducted multiple studies showing that massage can have a positive impact on people suffering from depression and anxiety.
In one study, researchers looked at 500 men, women, and children with depression or stress problems. They found that cortisol – also known as the “stress hormone” – could be reduced by up 53% after a massage. At the same time, many participants showed higher levels of serotonin and dopamine, neurotransmitters that have been shown to help reduce depression.
Want to know more about massage therapy careers? Request more information about massage therapy training at Branford Hall, or schedule a tour at one of our campuses in New York, northern New Jersey, Connecticut, or eastern Massachusetts.