“We all know that Massage Therapy makes us feel better, but how many know exactly Why?”, asked Harmony Morgan, Director for Healing Hands School of Holistic Health – Laguna Hills. “Fortunately for Healing Hands students, our Faculty has a passion for explaining the Why of all things related to their holistic health. No course better demonstrates this better than our 100-hour Anatomy for Body-Workers, coming to our Kearny Mesa Classroom on Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:30 am to 3:00 pm starting on October 18th and running through December 20th”, she added.
In Anatomy for Bodyworkers, students are given a comprehensive over-view of the bones, muscles, tissues and organs of the body. They are guided through an exploration of the individual functions of the body’s Systems, as well as how they work together to maintain whole body health. Students also discuss the benefits of massage on the various Systems and on the body as a whole.
Below are descriptions of each of these Systems and why massage is beneficial to each:
Circulatory System: The circulatory system is comprised of the heart, arteries, veins, and capillaries. It transports oxygenated blood from the lungs and heart throughout the body via the arteries. Every muscle, organ, tissue and cell in the body requires a constant supply of blood, nutrients and oxygen, which the Circulatory System facilitates. Massage Therapies and a variety of bodywork techniques increase the bloods circulation throughout the body by dilating the blood vessels. A healthy circulatory system is vital for proper functioning of the whole body.
The Musculo-skeletal System: The musculo-skeletal system is made up of the bones of the skeleton, muscles, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, joints, and other connective tissue of the body. It provides structure, support, stability, and allows for movement of the body. Massage is extremely popular for the musculo-skeletal system because it improves muscle tone, mobility, balance, range of motion and optimizes performance. When performed before exercise or an athletic competition, massage can help loosen up and warm muscles, reducing the chance of injury, sprain or strain. When performed after exercise, it reduces muscle soreness, relieves cramps, relaxes stiff muscles, and help speed healing of injuries.
Lymphatic System: The lymphatic system consists of lymph vessels, ducts, nodes, and organs that help rid the body of toxins, waste and other unwanted materials. Its primary function is to transport lymph, a fluid containing infection-fighting white blood cells (lymphocytes), throughout the body. Unlike blood circulation, which is moved by the heart’s pumping, the lymphatic system is dependent on muscle movement to work. Therapeutic massage helps to speed the flow of lymph, which facilitates a faster filtering and elimination of waste throughout the body. An efficient lymphatic system supports a strong immune system to fight against infections and disease.
Digestive System: The digestive system is the group of organs that break down food to absorb nutrients used as fuel by the body to keep all the body systems working. The leftover food that is not broken down, digested, or absorbed is excreted as a bowel movement (stool). Ther digestive system is quick to respond to stress. Our thoughtfully planned day is hi-jacked by the unexpected and we immediately feel “knots in our stomachs” as anxiety rises. Fortunately, therapeutic massage has a regulating effect on the digestive system. Massage inspires tight stomach muscles and intestines to relax and helps move food through the digestive system. Massage aids in our body’s assimilation of nutrients and helps facilitate elimination. Massage can also reduce symptoms of excessive flatulence and constipation.
The Nervous System: The nervous system is a highly complex network of nerves that relay messages from the brain to the rest of the body. The part that regulates many physiological functions leaves the brain at the base of the skull and runs through the spinal cord. Millions of these nerve endings are found throughout the body controlling much of the way it functions. Depending on the modality and depth of the massage techniques used, the nerve endings can either be stimulated or soothed.
The Integumentary System: The integumentary system consists of the skin, hair, nails, glands, and nerves. Its main function is to protect the body from the outside world. It also functions to regulate body temperature, retain body fluids, protect against disease, and eliminate waste products. Massage helps to exfoliate superficial dead skin cells of the body. It also increases circulation and facilitates cell renewal. Massage also helps maintain the collagen fibers in your skin which give it elasticity and strength (tone) and can help keep wrinkles at bay.
To learn more about Anatomy for Body-workers, or the other 80+ massage and related holistic health courses offered at Healing Hands, visit us online at www.HealingHandsSchool.com or call us at (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills or (760) 746-9364 in Escondido, or (858) 505-1100 in Kearny Mesa.