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Massage Tips #2

Home massage guide

Easy Back Leg Massage

top_thigh

This person is happy for the fingers to connect with the groin which is technically correct but may over stretch someone’s sense of propriety.

Leg massage is about relaxation, relieving tiredness and helping the persons circulation.  Here the massage treats the lower leg and then the thigh, but you can treat the lower and upper leg separately or both together as is comfortable for you to reach, but make sure you don’t over-reach as you may injure your own body.

Positioning:

Have your friend laying face down and if you are using draping techniques, uncover one leg.

Be aware of varicose veins, other problems and remember; never press into the back of the knee as you may cause pain and injury.

Add oil

Apply sufficient oil to the whole leg from the foot to the hip and note that on the legs you are encouraging blood flow back into the torso, so make your strokes up the leg a little stronger than strokes back down toward the foot.

Effleurage strokes help spread the oil and give you a indication of the underlying muscles.

Petrissage

Use firm strokes to lift and squeeze the muscles to improve circulation and remove toxins, but they should also feel nice for the person receiving.  Here you are essentially squeezing and wringing the muscles. Play the video.

  • Beware of varicose veins and other problems.
  • As you squeeze and slide your hands up,
  • allow your fingers to sink into the channels between muscles
  • and between muscles and bones following the contours of the muscles
  • and avoid pressing to hard on the bones
  • if you have nails, use your thumb pads, not tips.

Use thumb tip strokes as in the video, start from the ankle and stroke repeatedly to cover the entire back calf and remove the your thumb pressure before touching the back knee.

Can you feel and define the edges of the ankle and shin bones, and feel that you  are gently separating the muscles from the bone to gently massage them?

Back thighs 

The thighs are bulkier than the lower leg but the strokes are similar.  As with the calf muscles effleurage to warm the muscles up before applying firmer pressure.

Use firm thumb strokes to slide and press into the muscles.  These strokes can flow up over the buttocks, but your inside hand is advised not to advance too deeply into the groin without permission; not because the muscles stop, it is a sensitive area on some people. If the person is comfortable, you can slide onto and gently feel the pelvic bone and some of the ligaments that connect the leg to the torso.

Both hands slide gently back to commence the next stroke.

Use this method to cover the entire back thigh, and the strokes move progressively to the outer thigh and hip.  (If you are using massage as a foreplay, you can reverse the sequence.)

When the inner leg is complete,  repeat the techniques on the outer thigh and over the outer hip.

Kneading

Again you may do the lower and then the upper, or the whole leg as you can reach, but ensure you treat the entire inner and outer leg.

Use your hands to lift and squeeze as illustrated below to begin kneading / wringing on inner and outer calves and thighs.

Usually you’ll find the calf muscles more difficult to pick up, but the technique still feels nice and after working up and down the inside calf a few times using your fingers and thumbs, move to the outer calf and here you mostly use your thumbs.

On the thigh here there is a greater bulk of muscle so make you first stroke closer to the floor and massage along from knee to groin then lift away from the floor and work back to the knee. It may take two runs on a small person and three or five on a larger person.

Be systematic by working along the entirety of the inside leg working mostly with your fingertips and on the outside using your thumbs.

If you find using your thumbs on the outer leg is too difficult,  move to the other side of the person and use your hands as for the inner leg.

Wringing is also a nice technique to include here and can be used instead of kneading.

Drainage strokes

Make strong slides with even pressure on both hands from the ankle to the hip.  Wrap your hands as completely around the leg as possible and as you push toward the torso, feel that you are pushing all the fluids and toxins up, out of the leg and into the torso for recycling.

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