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The Origins of Massage Therapy

Similar to the early origins of chiropractic care, massage therapy dates back to ancient China. One of the first known Chinese texts includes instructions on massage training, acupuncture and herbology. Called “The Yellow Emperor’s Classic Book of Internal Medicine,” this work was published in English as a textbook hundreds of years later.

These methods were developed through the theory that illnesses are caused by an imbalance in the energies that course through the body. Massage techniques allow this flow of energy to be corrected so the body can heal itself.

While Japanese monks studied in China, they learned of these massage therapy techniques and brought them back to their home country. It was here that a well-known method of massage, Shiatsu, was developed. Shiatsu uses pressure points to achieve balance between a patients mind and body, stimulating a natural resistance to sickness.

Ancient Egyptians and Hindus also practiced forms of massage therapy, with records dating back to at least 2500 B.C. The Hindu massage practice, called Ayurveda, was passed down through word of mouth and was thought to restore a sick person’s mental and physical balance. Once this balance was restored through the massage therapy, healing would begin.

It wasn’t until the early 1800s that massage reached the Western world, when Swedish doctor and educator Per Henril Ling paved the way for Swedish massage with his “Swedish Movement System.” Shortly afterwards, Johan Georg Mezger adapted Ling’s techniques to create the basics of Swedish massage therapy.

In more recent years, massage therapy has become more popular in the Western world and is now commonly used to relieve both stress and pain. Recommended in conjunction with Chiropractic care, massage therapy provides many benefits and improves the overall well-being of patients.

Here at Anthony Medical & Chiropractic we offer a range of services including Chiropractic care and massage therapy to care for all of our patients’ health needs. Visit us online to learn more about our multi-specialty approach, then call us at 254-899-2225 to set up an appointment today!

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