Posture is such a fascinating subject. Do you ever wonder why we develop certain symptoms or why we are prone to certain aliments? From the first day that I attended massage therapy school, I was addicted. How could muscles affect us in such a way as to cause so many issues and why did it take so long for massage therapy to become a recognized form of treatment, which could actually help people?
I was amazed to discover that massage therapy has been around for centuries and has been recognized by many countries as an art of healing. There are many different schools of thought as to when it was originally developed but there are accounts of massage being passed down orally through generations in India as early as 3,000 B.C. or earlier. It was an art used by the gladiators of Roman times before and after their battles, and was promoted by the ancient Greeks for their athletes. Many other countries were known to use massage for purposes such as healing injuries, improving circulation or promoting relaxation to name a few.
Massage has evolved over the centuries to become what we know of it today. Even over the past few decades the art of massage has evolved. As a young teenager I can recall being taken to the “little old woman in town” when I incurred an injury to my leg while figure skating. The “little old lady” worked out of her house and with her heavy set husband sitting on his rocking chair in the living room smoking a cigar, I was led to a back bedroom where the smell of strong liniment permeated the room. There was a small single size bed, a chair and the perch which she sat on. My eyes were drawn to the size of her arms and hands and I can attest to the strength of both as she plied her skill to relieve the stresses of the muscles from the injury I had incurred.
It was a marvel to me that the treatment, although very painful, was so effective in the reduction of my symptoms and that I was able to return to my sport so quickly. I think that this was my first fascination with the art of massage.
In today’s world, obviously, there are stricter guidelines for those in the profession. There are now schools and Colleges that teach the art, as well as governing bodies that monitor the profession to ensure the safety of the public. Depending on which country or city you reside in, you will find that each area will have differences in the amount of years for massage therapists to become trained, differences in the techniques used or allowed and differences in the standards with regards to public safety, but the art of massage therapy is based on a similar foundation.
So how does our posture affect our health?