Hot Stone Massage


What is Hot Stone Massage?

In this article

Where Did Hot Stone Massage Come From?
10 Benefits of Hot Stone Massage
What Happens During a Hot Stone Massage?
Is Hot Stone Massage Painful?
Hot Stone Massage Aftercare

We all live busy lives, so wouldn’t you like to just relax and let all your cares and worries float away?

If so, a hot stone massage is just the ticket!

This popular thermal stone massage is a delightfully relaxing and serene treatment using warm basalt stones to massage the body from head-to-toe.

It’s a wonderfully warming treatment that works on energy points located throughout the body to rebalance and harmonise. The muscles are relaxed and rejuvenated in a sensation totally unique to hot stone massage.

The gentle pressure from the stones, along with the accompanying massage, has the effect of wiping out tension and literally making you feel like you’re walking on air.

Hot stone massage is different from other types of massage because it uses smooth, heated stones. These are usually Basalt river rocks, simply because they don’t have any jagged edges and they are at just the right weight to add the perfect amount of pressure.

These stones are also very effective at heating up and holding their heat for the duration of the treatment.

Hot Stone Massage

Your massage therapist will place the gently heated stones on energy points throughout the body. The warmth helps you to relax and the weight also plays a part too.

The stones help your massage therapist to use a slightly deeper pressure during the actual massage, giving you greater benefit and helping you to feel more relaxed as a result.

Many people wonder ‘what is a hot stone massage therapy’ and then panic when they hear about heated stones. Don’t worry, these stones aren’t super-heavy boulders and they’re not that hot either!

The stones are small enough to hold in the palm of your hand and they’re warmed up using a special heater, ensuring they’re the perfect temperature, but not hot enough to burn or cause discomfort.

Where Did Hot Stone Massage Come From?

The origins of hot stone massage therapy are somewhat disputed, but most people agree that the treatment originated in China around 2,000 years ago. During this time, heated stones were used widely in Chinese medicine to help boost the function of important internal organs.

From there, the relaxing element was discovered, making this treatment a mainstay in spas worldwide.

10 Benefits of Hot Stone Massage

Of course, you want to know about the benefits of hot stone full body massage before you have one! Aside from being super relaxing, this treatment has many other benefits too:

    1. Ensures a deeper massage – The warmth and pressure of the stones allows your massage therapist to go a little deeper with the pressure during your massage. This helps to relieve any aches and pains that you might have.
    2. Soothing if you regularly feel cold – If you have been feeling a little chilly lately or you are simply someone who is often cold, one of the main hot stone massage benefits is a warming sensation from the inside out. This will be deeply relaxing and enjoyable for you.
    3. Known to help with chronic pain conditions – Massage in general has been shown to help relieve the symptoms of chronic pain conditions, but the added heat with hot stone massage takes the benefits up a notch. If you have rheumatoid arthritis in particular, the warming sensation will help to relieve aching joints.
    4. Helps you get a good night sleep – A hot stone massage could be just the ticket if you’re struggling with your sleep. The warmth, weight, and massage will relax your mind and body, allowing you drift off into a satisfying slumber.
    5. May help to relieve depression and anxiety – Whilst massage alone may not conquer the symptoms of anxiety and depression, regular massage has been shown to help in many cases. A hot stone massage may be able to provide some respite from your symptoms.
    6. Helps to relieve tension – If you’ve been feeling particularly stressed lately, a hot stone massage can help to relieve tension whilst also promoting a sense of calm and wellbeing in the mind.
    7. May help to reduce symptoms of autoimmune conditions – Pain from conditions such as fibromyalgia may be reduced with regular hot stone massage, whilst also giving you an increased range of movement.
    8. Gives you an immunity boost – Another important hot stone massage benefit is the boost to your immune system, allowing you to perhaps avoid those winter colds and bugs.
    9. Helps you recover quicker from injury – Heat from the hot stones expands your blood vessels which allows oxygen to reach damaged muscles quicker than with a standard massage.
    10. Improves flexibility – Hot stones are placed all over your body during the treatment. Those that are placed on and around your joints will improve your mobility and flexibility.

So, if you’re wondering if a hot stone massage is good for you, the answer is yes!

Hot Stone Massage

What Happens During a Hot Stone Massage?

Treatments will vary slightly depending the spa that you’re visiting, but at our Bluewater Spa, you’ll be asked to lay face down, then your massage therapist will place a large heated stone on the base of your spine.

The warmth and pressure will have an instant soothing effect, and the gentle music and ambience of the room will also play their part. Your massage therapist will then massage your legs, remove the stone and massage your back.

They will then turn you onto your front and place a large stone on your stomach, massage the front of your legs and feet, arms and hands, décolleté and face, using cold stones on your temples.

A hot stone massage uses Swedish massage techniques, with various pressures. The main techniques are kneading, circular pressure, long strokes, and tapping or vibration.

At the end of the massage, the stones are carefully removed, and you’re left to lay still for a few minutes, coming back into the room and feeling completely and utterly relaxed!

Is Hot Stone Massage Painful?

Hot stone massage isn’t painful at all! The stones are warm, but not hot, and the warmth will feel pleasant and emit a tingling sensation along your spine, or wherever they are used.

Your massage therapist will use a specialist heater for the stones, which is set to a precise temperature. This ensures that the stones do not become too hot and cause discomfort or burning.

The massage itself is a little deeper than a regular massage, simply because the warmth allows the muscles to relax and your massage therapist can then apply a little more pressure to work out those muscles and release any tension.

However, your therapist will always ask you whether the depth and pressure is okay for you and if you feel like it’s too much, simply let them know and they’ll adjust accordingly.

You will feel completely relaxed and energised by this massage, with no pain felt in the slightest.

So if you’re asking yourself ‘what is a hot stone massage like’, the best way to describe it is relaxing and serene. The heat and the pressure, combined with the effects of the massage, help you to drift away to a place where cares don’t exist.

You might feel like you’re floating, and some people even fall asleep!

Hot Stone Massage

Hot Stone Massage Aftercare

After enjoying such a pleasant experience in our spa, you’ll want that feeling of bliss to last as long as possible! To retain the positive health benefits of your spa treatment for as long as possible, there’s a little aftercare advice you could follow:

  • Avoid any sporting activity or anything too strenuous after your massage – Take the time to relax a little more! It’s best to avoid anything strenuous until the next day. This is because the massage will not only release tension from your muscles, but toxins too. This can make you feel a little tired and you don’t want to push yourself and overdo it.
  • Drink water after the massage – This is to help flush out those muscle toxins and help you to feel energised and refreshed afterwards.
  • Avoid alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine after the massage – Your hot stone massage will really detox your system, so avoid these toxins for around 24 hours if possible, to benefit more.

Are You Ready to Relax?

Focusing on health and wellbeing is never time wasted and with so much stress floating around the world at the moment, surely an hour or so invested in yourself is a good thing?

Our hot stone massage ‘Rocks of the Mediterranean’ will take those cares away and allow you to completely enjoy your time in our hotel and around Bournemouth overall.

We don’t just offer hot stone massages in our spa, take a look at our wide range or massages and spa treatments. Plus, we have an indoor swimming pool, steam room and sauna, fully equipped gym and a relaxation lounge.

Why not make it a full day of relaxation with one of our spa days. Or dedicate your holiday to complete and utter indulgence with one of our spa breaks?

Book hot stone massage

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