Massage Therapy, Winter, & the Off-season

Fall'10Summer has come to an end and winter is just around the bend. Winter is when I see the most injuries and muscle related complaints. During the winter it is cold outside and potentially icy; we are cold, tense, and our circulation is not great lending to muscle tension and a greater risk of injury. Additionally, winter can be stressful; it involves Holidays, bad weather, multiple family gatherings, travel, and extra expenses.

Massage therapy is an essential component of your health care routine throughout the year, and the winter & off-season are no exception. Let’s take a look at just a few of the reasons why:

Cold, Snow, & Ice! It is now only a matter of time before we, in the Front Range, have our first snowfall of the season. Then it will begin, the driveway shoveling, tense excursions to and from the car, exercising/training indoors & outdoors: skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, walking, jogging, swimming, and cycling in slippery conditions. These are all things that put added stress into our lives, specifically on our musculoskeletal system. Fear no more, for regular massage therapy year-round can help to maintain your muscular flexibility & health, and decrease the chances of injury during the winter.

Winter Sports & Activities Winter sports and activities can be a lot of fun, but there is a definite risk for injury and it is very important that you have a maintenance/massage therapy plan in place to prevent musculotendinous injuries, strains, and sprains from happening. Yet, not all injuries can be prevented, and if you do experience an injury, massage therapy can be a crucial part of your recovery and rehabilitation.RetroGC

Stress Winter can be a time of tremendous stress. Winter brings Holidays, bad weather, multiple family gatherings, travel,  and extra expenses, all things that can cause stress; and let’s not forget that even the things that bring us happiness and joy can also be added stress. Exercise and welcomed life changes are stressful, both mentally and physically. Massage therapy can provide much needed relief, a wonderful place for peace, quite, stillness, healing, and relaxation for the mindbodyspirit.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD, winter blues/depression) During the colder months and shorter days, many people suffer from SAD, a type of depression that occurs at the same time every year. Most people with SAD have symptoms that start in the fall and may continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. There are also those who may not have SAD, yet experience lethargy and feel gloomy during the winter months. Massage therapy can help soothe and relax your nervous system and bring an overall sense of well-being. Massage therapy decreases stress and anxiety levels, and is very effective in uplifting your mood – massage therapy stimulates the brain to produce endorphins.

Cold & Flu Season Winter is typically the season when many people get ill with colds and/or the flu. Massage therapy can boost your immune system and decrease your chances of getting sick; I almost never get sick! This is another great reason to make massage therapy a regular part of your health care routine year-round! After recovering from a cold or flu, getting a massage can be help eliminate toxins from your system – Just a reminder: As a health care practitioner, I ask that you do not come to your session if you are ill, especially if you have a contagious illness. Massage therapy can exacerbate sickness, and if you come to a session ill, it also puts me and other clients at risk for infection.

So there you have it, these are just a few of the many reasons why massage therapy is essential during the winter & off-season (…& year-round). Receiving massage therapy on a regular basis and throughout the year, gives us a chance to boost our immune system, improve athletic performance, prevent injury, promote healing, manage pain, decrease stress, experience quiet, stillness, and promote relaxation. Massage therapy allows the mind to be silent so that the body can heal from the inside out!

I look forward to seeing you this fall & winter for your continued, regular massage therapy care.

Please checkout the convenient online scheduling on the “Book Now” page!!

Be Well,


Stress and Athletic Performance

bicicalistsBefore, during or even after a sporting event, stress can affect you in many ways which will determine the outcome of your performance. The need for athletes to be focused in training and competition is of utmost importance. Under the negative effects of stress, psychological tension may develop and distract you from staying focused. This, in turn adversely affects  your performance.

In addition to the psychological tension, your body may experience negative physical effects of stress. It may be in the form of muscle tightening which will affect your body’s coordination, speed and fluidity of movement, as well as the outcome of your performance.

Stress has reportedly been the cause of many poor performances among athletes. So, as we find ourselves in the midst of another busy race season please be sure to schedule your massage sessions.  Massage therapy will help you reduce stress and maximize your potential.

Massage Therapy & The Muscular System

  • Relieves soreness, tension, and stiffness
  • Improves muscle tone
  • Increases flexibility and range of motion of joints
  • Improves the flow of nutrients to muscles and joints, accelerating recovery from fatigue and injury
  • Reduces scar tissue
  • Breaks down or prevents adhesions (knots)
  • Speeds recovery from exercise
  • Enhances freedom of movement
  • Prevents or delays muscular atrophy, resulting from inactivity caused by injury, age, surgery, or illness
  • Increases physical confidence
  • Relieves cramps and muscle spasms
  • Reduces pain and swelling

Massage Therapy & The Skeletal System

  • Improves posture/body alignment
  • Relieve stiff joints
  • Decreases inflammation
  • Restores range of motion (increasing joint movement)
  • Releases joint strain (releasing tight muscles and tendons)
  • Releases restrictions in the fascia (connected tissues)
  • Improves the circulation / nutrients to your joints

Massage Therapy & The Respiratory System

  • Develops respiratory muscles
  • Regulates respiration
  • Promotes deeper and easier breathing

Acupuncture Pain Clinic – $30 Fridays

I’ve had ALOT of acupuncture over the last 7 years – treating everything from a deadly virus to soft tissue dysfunction.  I’ve always had great success and highly recommend it to others as an option for health care.  For me, it’s my ‘go to’.  My acupuncturist, Jennifer Six is offering affordable, community style pain clinics on Fridays in Boulder.  Her office is just down the street from mine,  see information below.

Acupuncture Pain Treatment Clinic* – Community Style (a few tables going at a time)
Every Friday from 12-3
Walk ins welcome!

Location: Wellness of Boulder
3300 Arapahoe Ave, Suite 215, Boulder

*For pain and injuries only. For internal disorder and ailments please contact Jennifer Six, L.A.c. for a free consultation.

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We are becoming more compassionate

I wrote this blog entry today for the blog but wanted to also share it with you – the words of the Dalai Lama are just too powerful not to spread around…

Although I am quite aware of the reality in the world today, I do pride myself on being an optimist and for my true belief in the inherent good within each of us. It’s simple, I was raised this way, for me, I have known no other method for working through life.  As an adult I now see how all the twists and turns in life have taken to where I am today.  Always focused on furthering the search for my true purpose I continue to follow my path with trust as well as caution.

A piece of this life purpose was revealed to me in the fall of 2009 when I traveled to Dharamsala, India on behalf of BCMT’s Massage for Peace service effort. This trip was nothing less than life changing for myself, my travel mates and the incredible friends that we met along the way. The intent of the group was to teach massage therapy to Tibetan refugees allowing them access to education, a new skill and increased hope for prosperity in their lives. What I found was that in many cases, I was the student. Learning about deep compassion and forgiveness, sincere dedication to truth and enlightened thought. Learning about their spiritual leader, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and their undying allegiance to him as children of his words.  This experience opened my world to this culture, their leader and a beautiful new mindset.

A client of mine recently told me about an interview on the Today Show, I wanted to share that today. I hope that you are as captivated as I was when watching this and I hope you are as optimistic as I am about the future of our world.

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Strong Words to Ponder

The Paradox of our Age
We have bigger houses but smaller families;
More conveniences, but less time;

We have more degrees, but less sense;
More knowledge, but less judgement;

More experts, but more problems
More medicine, but less healthiness;

We’ve been all the way to the moon and back,
but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

We build more computers to hold more information to
produce more copies than ever but have less communication.

We have become long on quantity,
but short on quality.

These are times of fast foods but slow digestion;
Tall man but short character;

Steep profits but shallow relationships.

It’s time when there is much in the window
but nothing in the room.

– His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatzo

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