Massage Therapy by Amy

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About Amy

Phone: 339.221.1193

amy@warriorsrespite.com

Amy is a muscular therapist and Upledger-trained craniosacral therapist. While swedish-based, her massage technique skill set is detail-oriented and muscle-specific, enabling her to focus on specific problem areas and integrate them with the whole body. She frequently incorporates other styles of massage into her work including deep tissue, sports massage, neuromuscular therapy, myofascial release, craniosacral therapy and Swedish massage. She is fully insured and licensed in the state of Massachusetts (#6744) and is a member of the American Massage Therapy Association.

Her interest in massage was first sparked while competing in ultimate frisbee in college. Amy discovered that she enjoyed giving massages to her teammates as it enhanced their performance and helped them to recover from competitions. This naturally led to an interest and special focus on athletes, injury work and approaches to injury related tension as part of the foundation for practicing massage. She frequently volunteers her massage services at sports events such as the Boston Marathon and thePan Mass Challenge. In the future, she will to expand her practice to treat a different type of warrior through bodywork: trauma and abuse survivors.

Amy also holds a BA in Spanish from Wellesley College. She has served as an educator in the Boston area and internationally to both adults and children. As the daughter of a US Air Force Lt Col, she has spent lots of time in foreign countries and grown to love dedication, perseverence and focused integrity. She loves languages, anatomy/physiology, most anything that keeps her active and outside, and bubble tea.

Reduce recovery times.  Massage increases circulation, which translates to faster nutrient delivery to more places in the body (especially those super-tight areas) and faster metabolic waste removal.  That means decreased muscle soreness from lactic acid build up. Another aspect of recovery is bringing the body back into a state of rest so it can repair. Massage activates the parasympathetic nervous system, the set of bodily functions that operate during rest. This is when muscle tissue is rebuilt and strengthened. Massage also helps significantly in surgery and injury recovery by breaking up excess scar tissue that builds up in muscles, tendons, and ligaments as a result of the body’s repair process. If the injury is the ugly hole in the wall, then scar tissue is the spackling slathered over it and massage is the sanding down afterwards.

Increase mobility and flexibility. Massage helps to lengthen muscles shortened by undue tension that keep your joints locked up. It also breaks up adhesions. These are places where layers of tissue (muscles, tendon, fascia) are glued together and no longer slide over each other like they should. Adhesions put extra strain on tissues in ways it isn’t designed to and also reduces the mechanical advantages of all muscle tissue involved, leaving the body with less strength-efficiency and abnormal pulls and restrictions on joint movement.

Maximize muscular strength you already have.  A tight muscle is a weak muscle. Think of it this way, if a muscle is stuck ‘flexed’, ie, contracted, it can’t flex when you tell it to because it’s already flexed to capacity.  For example, if 25% of the muscle fibers of your trapezius (those neck and shoulder muscles where you carry all your stress) are stuck in a contracted position, they can’t be utilized any more for that shoulder shrug in your cleans, leaving you really only able to use 75% of your muscle. Massage unlocks the usage of the other 25%.
Another aspect of this is the extra and undue strain put on muscular tissue by adhesions. Think of it this way: if one muscle is pulling/contracting in one direction, and it adheres to the muscle on top of it which pulls in a different direction, now both muscles are stuck to each other and each one’s pull reduces both the mechanical advantage of the other, but also offsets the direction of pulls. And the net result is each muscle has a reduced strength capacity. Massage breaks up these gnarly adhesions.

Integration of musculoskeletal and fascial systems.  Massage helps to restore the natural balance and co-functioning of muscular tissues. Often we perform our activities out of balance and disproportionately on a musculoskeletal level. For instance, a person’s pectoral muscles (chest) are abnormally tight (from too much bench press, working in front of a computer 80 hours a week, etc) pulling the shoulders forward and stretching the muscles in the back (rhomboids, trapezius) to be abnormally long. If these muscles are stuck in such positions, they are now working for you out of balance and pretty much any activity done utilizing these muscles is just straining them more, increasing the risk of injury. Massage helps to bring back the appropriate balance of the musculature for maximum performance capacity.

Increased body awareness. The more you do stuff in your body, the more connected you get to it.  With exercisizng, we predominantly strengthen our ability to command our body to do what we want.  Massage helps pave the other side of the street in this two-way relationship by helping to recognize what the body has to say about what we’ve been doing to it. This is an INVAULABLE relationship as it gives a greater and more finely-tuned sense of good-pain/bad-pain during and after our activities, maximizing our ability to work with our true limitations. Our bodies tell us what they need, if only we listen and learn to understand.

Injury prevention.  Pretty much everything said above plays a role in preventing injury: increasing flexibility, restoring the natural musculoskeletal balance, and hearing our body’s signals. In addition to these things, massage’s ability to break up tension and adhesions has a significant impact on preventing injury. Abnormal muscular tension and adhesion build-up put the body at higher risk for injury as they leave muscles and tendons in a weakened state. Healthy tissue is flexible and resilient to temporary strain. It is soft, and pliable and returns to its resting state easily. Abnormal tension and adhesions leave the muscle tissue no longer pliable and soft, but rather hard and more likely to tear than stretch and flex.

Warrior’s Respite offers a special Season Package to help athletes maximize their training from the season’s onset to final competition. While details are worked out on an individual basis, the package is roughly 12 weeks worth of massage; a mix-and-match combination of full 60 or 90 minute sessions plus 15-minute pre-/post-event sessions to be used as you like for your intense workout days and/or competitions. Elite athletes contiually testify that regular massage plays a crucial role in their training and performance. Try it out and see what it can do for you!

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