7 Moves To Be Ready for Ski Season

Be Ready for Ski Season with these 7 Moves

Get your legs back in skiing shape from the comfort of your living room with these seven easy moves.

Winter is just around the corner, and if you want to get in ski-season shape by the time snow begins to fall, you need to start training now.  These do-at-home exercises will help you avoid a case of noodle legs on your first run this winter.

1. Leg Blasters

This four-part set combines lunges and squats to gain more power and control while skiing downhill. The moves are intended to lengthen and strengthen your muscles through negative contractions. Perform a full set—squats, alternating lunges, jump lunges, and jump squats—then rest for 15 seconds. Repeat six times.

Squats: Standing with your feet a little more than shoulder-width apart, lower into a seated position until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Keep your heels grounded and your knees behind your toes. Maintain a strong core and hold your arms by your hips for alignment. Repeat 10 to 20 times.

Alternating Lunges: Set your feet shoulder-width apart and step forward with your left foot into a lunge. Keep your left leg bent at 90 degrees, and your right knee almost touching the ground behind you. Pushing off your front heel, return to the starting position with your feet apart. Repeat on the right leg. Do 10 to 20 reps for each leg.

Jump Lunges: Perform a lunge with your left leg forward. Then jump up and switch legs in the air, landing with your right foot in front of you and your left foot back. Repeat 10 to 20 reps for each leg.

Jump Squats: Squat and then shift weight from your heels to the balls of your feet to explode upward before landing softly on the ground. Do five to ten reps.

2. Russian Twists

This core-specific exercise is great for building those oblique muscles that you’ll need every time you go through turns on the mountain.

Sit on the ground and lean up slightly with your knees and hips bent at a 90-degree angle. Grab a dumbbell or weight plate and hold it with bent arms away from your chest. With your feet off the floor, engage your core and rotate your upper body as far as you can to the right, touching the weight to the ground. Return to the center and then twist to the other side. One repetition is a twist to each side. Do three rounds of 10 to 20 reps.

3. Lateral Hops with Tuck Hold

This exercise, which combines isometric and dynamic movements, is designed to improve stamina on the hill. While performing a lateral hop, keep in mind that the goal is not to jump as high as you can, but instead to improve strength and quickness. 

Keep a wide stance and jump laterally back and forth over a sandbag or foam roller. Concentrate on jumping softly and quickly. Continue for 30 seconds, then sink down into a squat position and hold for another 30 seconds, keeping a flat back and open chest. Rest for 15 seconds. Repeat four to eight times or as many as you can do with good form.

4. Front Squats

This low-rep, high-weight move is meant to improve your core and lower body strength.

Standing with a barbell or kettlebell held up near your jaw, lower your butt to the ground. Take a deep breath as you squat down and exhale as you stand back up. Keep your core engaged and your back straight as you slowly return to a starting position. Do six rounds of four to six reps. 

5. Low Back Complex

This three-part circuit is intended to combat lower back pain by strengthening muscles through isometric positions. 

First, stand with your feet a little more than shoulder-width apart and keep your spine arched and contract your lower back muscles. Starting with your arms at your side, raise them upward and over your head. Hold that position for 20 seconds. Next, perform a lunge with your left leg forward. Hold the lunge position and raise your arms upward and keep them elevated for 20 seconds. Third, kneel on the ground with your legs about six inches apart. Keep an arched lower back and open chest while raising your arms upward and hold that fully extended position for 20 seconds. Repeat the series three to four times. 

6. Single-Leg Deadlifts

This body-stabilizing exercise works your glutes, hamstring, and core, and enhances balance while also building ankle stability. 

Standing upright, extend your hands and slowly lean forward, leading with your chest. Slowly lift one leg out behind you, and keep your base leg slightly bent to maintain balance. While slowly leaning over, keep your back leg straight and in-line with your torso. Remember to take a deep breath in as you go forward and exhale as you return to a standing position. Do six reps. Then repeat on the opposite leg.

7. Jane Fonda

This four-part exercise activates your gluteus maximus, minimus, and medius to improve your balance. Perform the series for two rounds of 30 seconds each on the ground. Then switch sides to work the other leg. 

First, lie down on your right side with your right arm tucked beneath your head. Raise your left leg and lower it on the floor behind your right leg. Next, bring your left knee to your chest, while focusing on contracting your core. Then, starting from a straight-legged position, kick your left leg behind you to your rear. Finally, make clockwise circles with your left leg. After 15 seconds, switch to a counter-clockwise direction. Switch sides and repeat the circuit.

With these 7 moves in your daily routine, you’ll be standing strong and avoiding noodle legs on the slopes this winter.

Sports injuries

Sports massage is for the rehabilitation of a previous injury. Nothing slows you down like chronic pain from an old injury. Our massage therapists work on the injury location as well as on the muscle groups associated with the injury that may be causing additional pain from over-compensation due to the injury. The massage therapists at ZEN Massage are ready to get you back in form. Contact us about our Sports Massage Therapy in Salt Lake City.

Sports / Injury Therapy — 45 minutes for $65

Zen Massage in Salt Lake City

(801) 467-3529

5520 South Van Winkle Expy

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

 

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How to Begin a Workout Routine

Begin a Workout Routine Again

Have you been planted in the couch cushions too long?  Here are some tips we’ve found on how to start exercising and establish a fitness routine you’ll actually stick with.

Stop beating yourself up for your lack of effort, it’s time to move on and forgive yourself.

Here’s how to start:

1 Take Some Selfies

In order to accurately track your progress, it’s helpful to identify your starting point and then define your goal. If you do this every two to four weeks you can track your progress. Another option is to use a tape measure and track measurements in your biceps, waist, hips, bust, and thigh areas so you can see you’re losing inches, even on weeks when it seems the scale hasn’t budged.

2 Start Small

So you haven’t lifted a weight since who knows when? That’s OK. The first week you’re easing back into exercising, start small. Know that any movement is good movement. Commit to doing 10 minutes of an exercise video or walking for exercise three days this week. This will help you establish behaviors and create the habits your body will thank you for.

3 Make One Change at a Time

The first week you intend to exercise, look ahead at your schedule and establish modest changes to your routine. Write down five ways you are going to be healthy today. Your daily success list could include things like not drinking soda, eating more vegetables, doing 30 minutes of walking today, taking the stairs in your office once a day, and drinking more water. Keep them small and achievable so you’ll be motivated by your daily victories.

4 Plan Out Your Mornings

Starting a morning workout routine is just like establishing any other new habit: It requires some planning and dedication. Prep your coffeemaker to go off when you wake up, pack your lunch the night before. Look at each week ahead of time and plan exercise accordingly. Advance prepping and planning can eliminate decisions about your workout, clothes, or what you’re eating that day—freeing up time to actually exercise.

5 Expect to Fall

Here’s the reality of any journey, whether it’s business, relationships, diet, or fitness—you’re going to make mistakes and stumble along the way. Just remember, like you would if you were faced with an issue in the workplace, identify the problem and take action to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

6 Look Beyond Weight Loss

Exercise for the health benefits that aren’t related to weight loss, like feeling more energized, happier, calmer, and experiencing better sleep. When you don’t feel like exercising, remind yourself of how good you’ll feel during or after exercise. If you can begin to associate being active with pleasure and how good you feel as a result of it, you’ll be more inclined to stick to your exercise routine.

7 Find Something You Can Stick With

Fitness experts and doctors alike often say the “best exercise” is the one you enjoy and will keep doing. If you hate boot camp workouts or can’t see yourself making a weekly commitment to yoga, move on to something you’ll look forward to showing up for. Maybe a dance class, Spinning, ballet-inspired barre workouts, or walking with friends. You want to make this experience as pleasant as possible. 

8 Make New Habits

If you can nail down a few fitness habits—whether that’s getting up a few mornings a week or even showing up to the gym when you don’t feel like it—you’re more likely to be successful. Once your mental game is on point and established, the physical aspect of following through with your intentions will be easier.

9 Do It for Yourself

When you make a promise to anyone else in your life—your husband, child, boss, or friend—you stick to it, but because it’s you, you might not stick to your commitment. You must treat the fitness and health commitments you make for yourself like you would your job, family, and friendships. You wouldn’t let important people in your life who are counting on you down, so why do it to yourself? 

In the end it’s all about taking care of you.

Zen Massage in Salt Lake City 

ZenMassage.net

(801) 467-3529

5520 South Van Winkle Expy

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Back to School Specials for Mom’s – Spa Massage in Utah

Back to School Specials for Mom’s – Spa Massage in Utah

Back to School Specials for Mom’s – Spa Massage in Utah

Over the school holidays, if you had a dollar for every harassed mom who said she REALLY needed a massage you would probably be able to close your massage and spa business for a week and fly out to the Bahamas.

When the summer vacation is all over and life has returned to near normal, there are stressed parents everywhere looking for some respite, and a little treat after the weeks of ‘Mom, I’m bored’ from their little darlings. So why not come up with a few back to school specials that will soothe and restore them again?

  1. Most Moms will have spent a lot of the school holidays on their feet. Whether they’ve been on a vacation with the kids, on day trips or just running around after them constantly, the first part of their body (well, other than their nerves) that needs to recuperate is probably their feet. Promote overall stress relief, well-being and foot care with a package that will give real results; a ‘Take the Weight Off’ pamper package offering a reflexology session with all the extras!
  2. Cover all bases with an aromatic foot soak with essential oils, sugar or salt scrub, relaxing massage and reflexology, followed by a moisturizing foot mask or paraffin wax treatment. You’re your mom is relaxed, you can complete the treatment with a choice of polish and she’ll feel just like new!
  3. Another area that busy moms neglect when the kids are home is their own personal grooming. Let’s be honest, who has the time for a wax, a facial or manicure when they have a houseful of little ones to keep entertained? Taking them to the salon is a no-no so after a few weeks, unless they’ve managed to sneak off for an afternoon of me-time, they’ll be in need of some upkeep. A pick and mix package for all the bits they’ve missed, with discounts for the more treatments they book at one time, could be a winner.
  4. So, if they are coming in for their wax, you could offer 10 per cent off a regular facial booked at the same time, and if two treatments are booked, offer a further discount on a manicure or an eyebrow/lash treatment. They don’t have to have all the treatments at the same time, but they must be booked at the same time. Promote it as ‘Back to school and back to YOU’ to encourage moms to book the deals, and get them feeling more like themselves after a frazzled few weeks.
  5. Finally, a massage package is always a winner with moms who have been feeling stressed from all the extra demands of their kids. Offer a Back to School Massage deal – all full body, aromatherapy or shoulder, neck and back massages are 10 per cent off if booked for the first two weeks after the holidays – and add in a 15 minute foot massage as a free upgrade.

The main thing to remember is that for weeks, moms everywhere have been focusing on everyone but themselves – so you’re going to put the focus right back onto them and make them feel special.

Book your Back to School Massage today at Zen Massage – (801) 467-3529

Benefits of Corporate Massage

Benefits of Corporate Massage

Benefits of Corporate Massage

When the majority of people report that 70% of their stress is work related, it’s clear that most businesses are operating with stressed out workers.

Research on workplace stress found that physically, stress causes headaches, backaches, eye strain, neck pain, lowered resistance to infections, high blood pressure, ulcers and heart disease. Emotionally, stress causes depression, anxiety, listlessness, poor concentration, irritability and anger.

Book with Zen Massage today for all of your corporate Massage Needs in Salt Lake City, UT – (801) 467-3529

This is a recipe for a poor work environment, suffering financial statements, and a high turnover rate.

Think about it in this perspective – It’s been a long work week. Your employees have been working long hours, under a great amount of stress and pressure trying to complete several projects before their deadlines. They are exhausted and frustrated by the amount of hours they have been putting in at the office.

By offering a corporate massage to your employees you are proving to them that you care, that they are valued and appreciated. They start their weekend off by thinking: “I worked extremely hard this week, my company noticed and I was rewarded. I love where I work!”  The following work week they feel energized, refocused and productive.

Other benefits include the following:

  1. Increased employee morale
  2. Decreased overuse injuries
  3. Lowered stress
  4. Fewer sick days taken
  5. Unique perk employees can brag about

The American Massage Therapy Association reports that companies using corporate massage saw increased energy in their employees, as well as decreased job-related injuries, improved office environment, and a better ability to deal with the workload.

A massage therapist brought in once a week or once a month can upgrade the the work experience for everyone involved. Providing this benefit for employees is a sound investment. Happy and healthy employees make productive employees and the employer loses fewer days of sick time.

Written by Amelia Wilcox

The Benefits of Prenatal Massage

The Benefits of Prenatal Massage

FOR MOTHER AND BABIES TOGETHER

Both mother and baby

First and foremost, prenatal massage makes you feel good. It nurtures and pampers the body at a time when it needs it most. Book your appointment at Zen Massage in Salt Lake City, UT today. (801) 467-3529

In addition to soothing the body and dissolving stress, a trained touch delivers a wide range of physiological, psychological and emotional benefits.

It’s a safe and relaxing way to relieve pregnancy’s common discomforts like backaches, carpal tunnel syndrome, leg cramps and shakes, headaches, heartburn, fatigue, hemorrhoids, nasal congestion, sciatica and shortness of breath.

Prenatal massage does more than benefit the mother. Everything a pregnant woman does — from her diet and fitness to her relaxation and relative state of contentment – also directly affects the child she is carrying.

Study after study has proven that calmness in the mother leads to healthier in-utero development.

Regular prenatal massage can help prepare you for labor by making the pelvis more supple.

Just like a regular massage, prenatal massage:

  • improves circulation
  • aids lymphatic flow
  • removes toxins
  • promotes relaxation
  • raises endorphin levels
  • eases neck, back, and joint pain
  • relieves muscle spasms and cramps

Book your appointment at Zen Massage in Salt Lake City, UT today. (801) 467-3529

How Our Bodies Register the Power of Touch

The Surprising Science Behind the Healing Power of Touch

By Anne Mullens with additional research by Jennifer Krissilas, Reader’s Digest Canada

It’s the sense that we most often take for granted—and one cannot live without. Check out the surprising science behind the healing power of touch.

How Our Bodies Register the Power of Touch

Of our five senses, touch is often the one we take for granted. Science has only begun to understand the highly complex system of nerves, sensors and receptors that link our skin and brain to our environment and the people around us.

“There’s still so much we don’t know about touch sensations,” says David J. Linden, a professor of neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University and the author of 2015’s Touch: The Science of Hand, Heart, and Mind. What we do know, he says, is that there are separate sensors for texture, vibration, pressure and itch.

One of the leading touch researchers in the world is Dr. Håkan Olausson, professor of clinical neuroscience at Linköping University in Sweden. He was part of a team that found special touch fibres, called C-tactile afferent fibres, which are responsible for regis­tering and transmitting to the brain the emotional meaning of gentle strokes and caresses. These nerves respond optimally when touched at around 32 C—the temperature of a human hand. “They are particularly sensitive to caresses but also respond to many other types of touch, such as pressing on the skin,” Olausson says.

When the CT fibres aren’t working properly, a gentle touch instead feels aversive and can undermine attempts to form emotional connections to others, says Francis McGlone, a neuroscientist at Liverpool John Moores University in England. CT stimulation, when delivered through nurturing touch, impacts the neural networks in our brains that allow us to see ourselves as separate beings with needs that are different from others. Without this ability, individ­uals may be unable to read emotional cues, making it difficult for them to empathize. Research last year, led by McGlone, found that children on the autism spectrum may have a difference in the functioning of their CT fibres that causes them to find soft touch from others unpleasant.

For individuals whose CT fibres function normally, however, touch can bring a great amount of bene­fit, McGlone says. Gentle contact can reinforce social relationships, communicate positive feelings, and even make us more capable of dealing with stress.

 

Continue Reading the Original Article Here

Stealing a Little Time for Yourself, Guilt Free

Making Time for Yourself Can Greatly Improve Your Relationships

Whether you’re single, married, or in a relationship, the demands of life and the expectations of those nearest and dearest to your heart can make finding time for yourself a huge challenge. Between dedicating time to parents, children, partners, siblings, in-laws, nieces, nephews, friends, colleagues, and work, it’s hard to even dream of stealing a little time for yourself.

Couple that with the guilt that many people, especially women, experience when they manage to find a few moments of time for themselves, and it becomes clear why so many people feel that finding time for themselves isn’t worth the effort. But worth the effort it is, and not only because of the personal benefits you’ll reap. Alone time has interpersonal benefits as well.

Personal Benefits of Solitude

Taking time for yourself gives your brain a chance to reboot, improves concentration, increases productivity, helps you discover (or rediscover) your own voice, gives you a chance to think deeply, and helps you problem solve more effectively. It also gives you a better sense of balance and self-awareness that can lead to a better understanding of yourself–what drives you, what inspires you, what excites you. This, in turn, can have a positive effect not only on the quality of your relationship with yourself, but also on the quality of your relationships with others.

But in today’s world, how do you find the time to give to yourself? And equally important, how do you deal with the guilt when you somehow manage to find it?

“Finding” Time

As overscheduled as our lives are these days, it can be quite a challenge to find time for yourself. There are a few things you can do, such as using your lunch hour, waking up a little earlier than everyone else, and temporarily disconnecting from your gadgets. If you’ve tried these tricks and still can’t seem to find any time to schedule for yourself, then you may need to take a hard look at your schedule and your priorities.

What are some things you’re doing now that can be consolidated or eliminated? Is there anything that can be postponed? What can be delegated? Maybe it’s true that you can do things better than everyone else, but in most schedules, there are some things that don’t need to be done better; they just need to be done. By delegating those tasks, you can free up some time for yourself, which may be much more productive in the long run than doing everything yourself.

Another important point to remember is that you don’t have to come up with hours and hours of alone time. Just start off small and see what happens. Hopefully, the little bit of time you steal for yourself will become so reinforcing that you’ll find more and more ways to get more of it.

Overcoming the Guilt

Some people, particularly women, feel guilty about taking time for themselves. They see themselves as the one who should be taking care of everyone else, and their needs often fall by the wayside. However, taking care of yourself is something that you should never feel guilty about. It not only models healthy behavior for the ones you love, but it also keeps you happy, healthy, and strong so that you can continue doing what fulfills you; and if that’s taking care of others, then you’re in an even better position to do that.

Guilt is counterproductive to reaping the full benefits of solitude. If you spend all or even some of your “found” time feeling guilty that you found it, then doesn’t that defeat the purpose?

If you need even more justification to lose the guilt, consider these points:

♦ Spending time with yourself is time well spent because it makes you a happier person to be around.

♦ Spending time with yourself benefits everyone because by having a happier and healthier mindset, you’re in a better frame of mind to take care of the people who are important to you.

♦ Spending time with yourself is preventative medicine to combat burnout. What good will you be to anyone if you eventually burnout? (And you will if you don’t take care of yourself.)

Overcoming Resistance

Once you begin making time for yourself, dont be surprised if you don’t run into a little resistance from those in your life who are used to you always being available. There are many reasons why this resistance might happen–insecurity, overdependence, feeling slighted or rejected, or simply because they have become accustomed to always having you around. Don’t let their resistance stop you. Reassure these people that you’re still there for them, but in order to be there for them over the long haul, you also have to also take care of yourself. Then, do it! Just as they’ve grown accustomed to you always being there for them, they’ll get accustomed to you taking time for yourself.

Hopefully, the ideas here will leave you inspired and motivated to find ways to make time for yourself.

“When we take some time to solely think about ourselves, and not have to consider our impact on others, we begin the process of true self-awareness. It can be a little daunting at first, but the result of this awareness is that you learn what drives you, what excites you, and what motivates you. This new-found self-awareness is a beautiful thing and it can have a dramatically positive effect on your life and relationships.” – Marty Herald’s Personal Growth and the Art of Inspired Living blog.

So give yourself a gift that will keep on giving … time for yourself.

Booking a Massage @ ZenMassage.net is a great way to get your free time in.

Take time for yourself and feel great!

Book your Massage online @ ZenMassage.net

Or call  (801) 467-3529

Zen Massage | Luxury Massage in Salt Lake City, Utah

5520 South Van Winkle Expy

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

 

Source:  Psychology Today

Massage for Skiers | Knee Injuries Utah

This area of the body has garnered some skiing notoriety, for good reason: the knee.

How Can Sports Massage and Deep Tissue Massage Help Rehabilitate Knee Injuries for Skiers?

Knee injuries account for 30-40% of all reported skiing injuries. Because of the amount of landing and cutting, with sudden changes of direction, skiing puts a lot of pressure on your muscles and joints, particularly the hips and knees. And when muscle imbalances exist, injury can occur. For example, uncontrolled landings play a large role in skiing injury; if your hip abductors and muscles of the pelvis have a propensity towards tightness, they are unable to fully stabilize your body in a landing or a fall. This leaves the lion’s share of responsibility for stabilization to your knees. And that’s not what they are built for. At high speed, a sudden twist or turn to attempt to avoid a crash or soften a landing will impact the most vulnerable body part involved in such movement, often resulting in knee ligament tears or strains.

This is one of the reasons why a strength-training regimen is so important for creating muscular balance for skiers. Building up strength in the larger muscles in the inner and outer thighs provides a better network of support for the smaller, more volatile ligaments surrounding and supporting your knee, and helps ensure stability and endurance in skiing. Pre-season exercises are key to developing muscle strength in the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and core muscles.

Most knee injuries that are incurred while skiing are ligament strains or tears. Symptoms often include pain, swelling, and a restricted range of motion around the injured ligament. Injuries are graded in severity; less severe strains may be treated with rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory measures, while more serious ruptures may require immobilization and even surgery.


How can Massage Therapy Help with Knee Injuries?


The Massage Therapy approach I best like taking is to nip knee injuries incurred through skiing right in the bud, before you even put on your goggles. Pre-season Sports Massage Therapy for skiers is pointed towards identifying and addressing any muscle imbalances. We will attempt to decrease hypertonicity in your hip abductors. We will keep your hamstrings flushed out and encourage strengthening exercises. We will release any tightness in your quadriceps. All of these measures help ensure that you are working with a proper, balanced body mechanism that will support healthy knee function.

But what about receiving Massage Therapy treatment after a knee injury for the purpose of rehabilitation?

When dealing with a strained or torn ligament, there’s not a lot that we can do directly to the acute injury source. However, we can employ Deep Tissue Massage to focus our work on creating change in the structure around it, by improving circulation to the outlying areas. We promote the healing process by keeping the soft tissue as healthy as possible.

In addition, many people recovering from an injury feel generally uncomfortable; the pain and sudden state of immobilization can throw your nervous system into a state of chaos and frustration. Massage Therapy sedates the nervous system, promotes a healthy balance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems, and helps your reaction to the injury not be so devastating.

And of course, if you’re hobbling around on crutches, you may find yourself overworking previously underused upper body muscles! Your traps, lats, muscles of the shoulder, forearms, and wrists may suffer secondary consequences. So we can take care of those as well, in your Massage Therapy session.

Sports Massage and Deep Tissue Massage can help keep you off those pesky crutches and on the slopes.

Book your Sports Massage @ ZenMassage.net

(801) 467-3529
5520 South Van Winkle Expy
Salt Lake City, UT 84117

How to Have the Best Massage Experience

It’s no surprise that a massage can seriously soothe your mind and body, and you already know a solid rubdown has impressive health perks, like better blood circulation, amped immunity, anxiety relief, and even improved sleep quality.

But beyond the obvious, there’s a lot to wonder about the magic of massage. Few therapies are quite so up-close-and-personal, so to avoid awkward moments, wasted cash, and most importantly potential pain, it’s crucial to be in the know.

How to have the best possible massage experience

It’s Fine to Get Naked

It can be a little uncomfortable to strip down to your birthday suit in front of someone you’ve never met, but really, it’s totally normal. Remember, massage therapists are trained professionals and your undressing can actually lead to a better appointment. Undress to the point of where you feel comfortable, professionals keep you covered with sheets or draping where appropriate, but you should know that undergarments can sometimes get in the way of long strokes or pressure points and inhibit you from experiencing the best massage possible.

Remember to Breathe

When your massage therapist is working out a particularly bad knot, it can be tempting to tense up a little bit and hold your breath. Please, don’t do this, or you may miss out on one of the major benefits of that rubdown. It’s crucial that you breathe fully and deeply when difficult areas are being worked on so as to oxygenate your blood supply and aid tense muscles.

Drink a Ton of Water After Your Appointment

It’s especially important to hydrate post-massage. Like when working out, your muscle tissues can become dehydrated during a massage. Drinking plenty of water after your massage is very helpful in rehydration, building healthy muscle tissue, and removing wastes that accumulate as your muscles are worked out.

A Warm Shower Before

For the best possible rubdown, it’s important to take care of yourself before you step foot in the spa. The easiest and most relaxing way to prep? A long, hot shower. The relaxation effect of a warm shower on both the mind and the muscles will help you be less tense during the session, which will benefit you as well as the therapist. Also, being and feeling clean can help mitigate body insecurities if they come into play. Plus, the therapist will appreciate your cleanliness for obvious reasons

Hit the Gym Before Your Massage

Definitely pump the weights, cycle or take the run before, not after, your massage. The muscles you work may be a little tired from the exercise itself, but should be nicely warmed up for the massage.  Working out immediately after a massage is not a good idea as you are likely to stress and strain the muscles that were just relaxed.

Request Your Preferred Massage Style When You Schedule

There’s nothing worse than leaving the spa feeling, well, meh. While they’re trained to help your body, massage therapists can’t read your mind, so it’s best to tell the receptionist if you have any preference of therapists, pressure, or massage types when you book your appointment. This will help ensure you’re matched with someone who will be able to best work with your needs—for example, relaxation vs. deep tissue injury work.

Be Strategic About Timing

While there’s no perfect hour to schedule a massage, you still probably want to consider the timing of your appointment. To do this, think about what makes sense for you and your schedule. Some people feel invigorated after receiving massage and use it to start their days, while others like to eliminate stress from work and life with massage after a long day, and relax knowing they are done for the day.

Bodily Functions, Well, Happen…

Massages are sure to chill you out, but did you know they can also improve your digestion? So, if you’re getting a rub down and hear some grumbling noises and yes, even flatulence, don’t freak. It’s easy to be embarrassed, but there’s absolutely no need to be: “It’s not uncommon for people to pass gas during a massage session, it’s completely normal,” says, Dr. Helen Litovsky, Massage Therapist at Zen Massage. If you’re worried, avoid any high-fiber foods before your appointment. Litovsky also suggests hitting the bathroom before your session and not drinking too much water right before you hit the table, since there’s nothing worse than having to pee while someone is pressing on your bladder.    

Avoid Eating Right Before

Generally, a full meal right before you hit the spa is a no-go, as massage certainly stimulates digestion. Eat lightly right before a massage, and have a meal a few hours prior. Don’t starve yourself in the preceding hours, as you may feel dizzy or light headed during the massage as a result. Eating lightly one to two hours beforehand will allow for digestion while not making you feel uncomfortably full.

Speak Up

It may seem out of place to tell your massage therapist to do “more of this” or “less of that,” but that’s exactly what they want you to do. In fact, the worst thing you can do is say, “I just want a good massage”. During the massage, you shouldn’t be afraid to tell your therapist if something is uncomfortable, the pressure is not right, or if you have a question about what your therapist is doing. Be sure to ask them to spend more time on a certain area if that is what you want—at the end of the session is too late, and this is your massage.

It Shouldn’t Hurt

A little pain is necessary to get the job done, right? Not necessarily. There may be slight pain in stretching or having tight or tensed muscles worked on, but relaxation really is the key. If too much force is provided, the muscle tightens up more and creates even more pain and possibly bruising muscle and damage. So, again, be sure to let your therapist know if something hurts. We promise, they won’t be offended.

If You Feel Any Soreness, Treat It

Your muscles can get a little sore after a massage for the same reason they do after a stellar exercise session: They’re being worked pretty hard! You wouldn’t ignore tight or painful muscles after a long run, so you shouldn’t after an intense rubdown either. After deep work, icing is recommended to lessen the immediate soreness. Light stretching is a nice touch too, because the muscles are warmed up, so light yoga or even getting an adjustment at a chiropractor after is perfect harmony.

Communicate any distractions

If the music makes you uncomfortable in any way, or the temperature of the room becomes too cold, let your therapist know immediately. These distractions will take you away from your body,  and ultimately your relaxation.

One Rubdown Every Few Years Isn’t Going to Do Much

ZEN Massage in Salt Lake City. Has monthly memberships to make your massages more affordable. We know you live a busy life, we are here to help take your mind off the daily stresses and make your massage therapy experience as relaxing as possible. Try our online scheduling feature to schedule your next massage.

Reduce stress and feel great, with the best masseurs in Salt Lake City, Book with ZEN Massage today!

(801) 467-3529

5520 South Van Winkle Expy

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

 

Listen to Your Body

Recently, I heard from a client that she really didn’t understand what people mean when they say “listen to your body”.

Thanks to Jessi Kneeland for explaining it to us!

“Listening to your body” simply means learning how to tune in, to the way your body talks to you.

It’s a skill that lets you tune into the way your body talks to you. You’re constantly receiving messages from your body in various forms like hunger, thirst, pain, pleasure, lust, sickness, emotions, and the desire to find a bathroom. Some messages feel good, and some are uncomfortable, but that doesn’t mean that the message itself is actually good or bad.  Your body’s messages to you are always neutral; they’re just information being sent to you by your body. In fact, by judging those messages as good or bad, it’s actually much harder to hear them.

We have such an aversion to feeling uncomfortable that our first impulse upon is often to suppress or ignore uncomfortable feelings as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, when you get in the habit of automatically suppressing your body’s messages, you miss out on what those messages were here to tell you. All of our body’s messages are neutral. They’re just information, and each message has a specific purpose and job.

Unfortunately, people rarely seek out solutions for messages that are less loud-and-clear. Society has us convinced that it’s normal for our bodies to feel broken most of the time. Most people live with chronic fatigue, headaches, low back pain, anxiety, and/or poor digestion. They suppress and ignore their body’s messages as best they can, never stopping to explore what the message is there to teach them.

We are meant to feel far more vibrant than most people feel nowadays. But you simply cannot achieve optimal levels of energy and health without learning how to listen to and interpret your body’s messages. 

Ways your life improves when you learn to listen to your body:

1. Feel less crazy around food

Many women have completely screwed up hunger and fullness signals, thanks to years or decades of intermittent yo-yo dieting. Many of my clients have spent their entire adult lives suppressing and ignoring their body’s messages around food in an effort to lose weight, and they come to me completely unaware of what it actually feels like to be hungry or full.

As you might imagine, being able to hear your body when it says “I’m hungry” and “I’m full” makes it a helluva lot easier to know when to eat and when to stop. It also makes it easier to know what to eat. Imagine knowing the difference between real cravings and emotional/boredom cravings, and being able to consciously decide which ones you’ll act on!

Doing the work (and yes, trust me, this one often takes a lot of work) to hear and understand your body’s messages around food and eating will make it easier to lose and keep off weight, remove guilt from the eating equation, and erase chronic stress around food. Instead of trying to adhere to a random set of rules and restrictions, it becomes mind-blowingly simple: what will make my body feel good?

2. Less pain

Many people sit at desks all day and move only during their workouts. It’s impossible to completely undo the physical stress of a lifestyle like that, but by listening to your body, you can keep the damage to a minimum. Lower back pain isn’t always a lifetime sentence, for example. It’s often just a message that something needs to be explored and adjusted. Often that means changing the way you sit, stand, move, sleep, breathe, or train.

Also, you’ll be less likely to get injured as you increase awareness and start to explore yourself. You’ll move better, get stronger, and become more unbreakable as you listen to how your body feels in each posture, movement, and position.

It’s important to mention here that our society will try to convince you that everyone has chronic pain and that it’s totally normal to feel broken from your mid-twenties on. I challenge you to not accept that because it’s simply not true. 

3. Better workouts

Learn the difference between “good pain,” and “bad pain,” and you’ll know when to safely push yourself at the gym, and when to dial it down a notch.

What does it feel like when your body is craving rest, versus when it’s craving a workout? What does it feel like for your glutes to be firing and functioning properly in a squat, versus your low back or hip flexors to be doing most of the work?

Tuning into your body gives you better information to work with, which leads to better overall durability, as well as stronger muscle contractions. This means better, faster, and safer results at the gym.

4. Better health

Your body tells you when you need to slow down and relax, often in the form of subtle signals like tiredness and flare-ups of old chronic issues. If you ignore those messages, it’ll send louder messages in the form of sickness, injury, panic attacks, or mysterious and seemingly random physical symptoms.

By paying attention to your body’s messages, you can avoid a lot of those health issues by catching them early and figuring out what you need, re-balancing, and bring yourself back up to 100%. That can include anything from getting a massage or more sleep,  to prioritizing alone time, remembering how to truly relax, or practicing better self-care.

Beyond avoiding sickness though, learning how to tune into your body will also give you the information you need to elevate your day-to-day health from “I feel fine” to “I feel amazing.”

5. More pleasure

One of the side effects of habitually suppressing the body’s uncomfortable messages is that you also automatically suppress a lot of the pleasurable messages! Learning how to tune back into pleasure will help you identify and pursue more of what feels good for you, bringing more immediate joy and gratification into your life! This applies to movement, sex, friendship, hobbies, and pretty much everything else.

Plus, the brain will strengthen any neural pathways you make it travel down frequently. That means the more you practice tuning into your pleasure messages, the louder and stronger those messages get. (Aka: you’ll be able to experience more frequent and intense pleasure.)

6. Sharpen your emotional intelligence

Emotions are physical. We feel them in our bodies, so habitually tuning out your body’s signals means you also tune out your emotions! That makes for some seriously confusing adulting. (What do I want to do with my life? Who do I want to date? WHO AM I?!)

Don’t put your brain in charge of shit it’s not qualified to do. It’ll do the best it can, but being in touch with your emotional landscape is crucial if you want to be able to make informed decisions that help you build a rich, fulfilling, authentic, and joyful life.

Being in touch with your emotional landscape is crucial if you want to be able to make informed decisions that help you build a rich, fulfilling, authentic, and joyful life.

Start thinking about your emotions. Where in your body do you feel sadness? How about anger? Joy? What does each emotion feel like? Is it cold, warm, soft, or hard? Does it have a color or texture? Is it tight and small, or big and open? Does it move around or sit very still? Get to know your emotions as physical experiences, and then start noticing when each one shows up.

This will offer you some CIA level intelligence when it comes to what you need and what’s going on for you. Maybe your brain doesn’t know you’re mad yet, but the cold tightening feeling in your belly when you see your partner says otherwise.  Access to this data will truly transform your life.

7. Stronger intuition

Much like emotions, your intuition shows up physically; that’s why we call it a “gut feeling.” Learning exactly what your intuition feels like will allow you to identify and trust it quickly and effectively. If something feels “off” to you about a person or situation, but you’re not in tune with your body’s signals, you may confuse your body’s “get out of here” signal with anxiety, even indigestion!

8. Increase your autonomy

The brain will strengthen whatever neural pathways you frequently use, meaning the more you listen to your body’s messages, the louder those messages become. You want those messages to be loud because that means you never again need to listen to anyone else who tries to tell you what’s best for you.

Your body is the be-all, end-all when it comes to knowing what’s right for you. Dr. Oz and fear-mongering fitness magazines have no power over you if you’re listening to and trusting your body. If some celebrity starts an “only eat blue foods” trend, for example, you won’t have to blindly fall prey. You can simply use your body’s messages to inform you. Do you feel good when you eat red, brown, yellow, and green food? Yes? Great, then this diet trend probably isn’t for you.

9. More self-trust

The louder your body’s messages get, the better of a job you can do of asking questions, exploring, and addressing whatever you uncover. With practice listening and responding to your body’s messages, you’ll very likely feel more energized, empowered, stronger, happier, hotter, and healthier. With all of those things comes trust in yourself.

This is huge because self-trust is the enemy of anxiety and insecurity. Knowing that I did this lets you relax into yourself, trusting that you and your body are always on the same team and that the answers are always inside you.

Credit to :

9 Unexpected Benefits to “Listening to Your Body”

Massage Therapy

Daily frustrations manifest in your muscles, leaving you sore, achy, only adding to the mounting stress. Massage is a service that focuses on you and gives you time to relax and let the stress melt away. You and your masseur work together to identify the areas where your stress hides, relieving you of physical pain and clearing your mind so you can tackle any task. More than anything, massage clients report feeling revitalized after a massage.

Book a massage appointment online today!

ZEN Massage in SLC. Has monthly memberships to make your massages more affordable.

We know that you live a busy life and we are here to help take your mind off the daily stresses in your life and make your massage therapy experience as relaxing as possible. Try our online scheduling feature to schedule your next massage to a relaxed state of mind. So if you’re ready to reduce stress and feel great, and only want the best masseurs in Salt Lake City, contact us and set up an appointment with ZEN Massage today!