What Is a Swedish Massage


April 24, 2023


Derrick Allen

If you are looking through different types of massages, then you may have come across a Swedish massage. But what is this exactly? Click here for more.

It might surprise you to learn that massages can help reduce anxiety. The benefits of massage therapy don’t stop here, though, and they are a popular option for many people who experience physical and emotional health issues.

Although there are different types of massage therapy, not everybody understands Swedish massage. Let’s look at the key information you need to know.

What Is a Swedish Massage?

This type of massage therapy is a form of relaxation massage and is based on the Western concepts of anatomy and physiology, which are combined with soothing strokes. It was developed by Henrik Ling in the 18th century.

It’s typically done with light to medium pressure, long strokes, kneading techniques, and circular motions all over your body. These techniques help to relax your muscles.

Your massage therapist may also use oils or lotions with aromatherapy properties to enhance your relaxation experience. A good therapist will ask you beforehand if you’re comfortable with this, as some people have allergies to certain products. Others might not want to use them.

The Benefits

The key benefit of Swedish massage therapy is that it helps to reduce stress.

This is done by encouraging the production of oxytocin, a hormone that can help you relax and feel better. It also helps improve your circulation, which can help reduce pain and stiffness in your muscles. This type of massage therapy increases the level of serotonin and dopamine in your body, which can improve your overall mood.

For this reason, people with high-stress jobs often schedule massages. This can go a long way toward helping them unwind. Swedish massage therapy is also beneficial for improving joint flexibility, promoting relaxation, and relieving headaches and migraines.

It’s useful for reducing stress and tension, as well as aiding in better sleep. You can even use it to treat specific conditions like multiple sclerosis and tendonitis.

Athletes often use massage therapy to help with injuries and pain.

Primary Techniques

When it comes to Swedish massage therapy, there are several primary techniques.

These include effleurage, petrissage, friction, vibration, and tapotement. Each of these plays of large role in the results you get. Let’s explore them below.


Effleurage consists of long, smooth strokes that help relax the body. Your therapist may use these strokes to help you relax, as well as warm up the muscles before more intense techniques.

Many people describe this technique as soothing and calming. It’s not uncommon for the therapist to use lighter pressure during this technique, as well.


Petrissage is a kneading technique used to loosen tight muscles. This technique involves the therapist working their hands into the muscles, which helps to reduce tension and increase circulation.

It’s essential to communicate with your therapist so they can ensure the pressure is comfortable for you.


Friction involves deeper pressure and is typically used to reduce knots in the muscle fibers. The technique uses circular motions combined with friction to help break down scar tissue and reduce stiffness in your muscles.

When used correctly, it can be incredibly helpful for reducing pain and increasing mobility. Those who have suffered from an injury or chronic pain can benefit significantly from this type of massage therapy technique.


The vibration technique is often used to help relax the body.

The therapist will place their hands on the area of your body that needs attention and use fast, shaking motions to relax your muscles. This technique can help reduce muscle tension and increase circulation throughout the body. Some people find vibration uncomfortable at first.

Shortly after, they often get used to the sensation. Then, they can begin to rest and relax.


Tapotement is a percussion-like technique used to stimulate muscle fibers. The therapist will use their hands to tap, chop, or even flick your body in order to help increase circulation and reduce pain.

Tapotement can also be used as an energizer if you feel tired after a long massage. This makes it an ideal technique for athletes since it can help encourage blood flow and boost energy levels.

Environment and Preparation

Before you start your Swedish massage, it’s important to be in an environment that is conducive to relaxation. This is often a quiet room where you can focus on the massage without interruption.

The more relaxed you are, the more effective the process will be. Your massage therapist may play music in this environment, as well.

It’s essential that the massage therapist knows about medical conditions or injuries you may have so they can adjust their technique accordingly. This will help you get the most out of your massage experience.

The Cost

Prices will vary depending on where you are and who your massage therapist is. It’s best to check with them in advance of your appointment so you can know what to expect financially.

In general, Swedish massage therapy can be more expensive than other forms of massage, but the relaxation and health benefits are often worth it. Keep this in mind when deciding if Swedish massage therapy is right for you.

It’s not uncommon for therapists and spas to offer discounts or promotions. Keep an eye out for these during your search. You could find yourself saving a substantial amount of money.


People with chronic pain, such as back pain or arthritis, will benefit greatly from this type of massage.

So, athletes, people who are under physical or emotional stress, and those who are undergoing rehabilitative therapy are great candidates. Pregnant women should always talk to their doctor before receiving this type of massage. This will ensure they get the best possible benefits while avoiding potential risks.

If you are unsure how you can benefit, reach out to a massage therapist for more information. They will be able to advise you on the type of massage that could benefit you most.

Finding a Massage Therapist

The results you get will heavily depend on the massage therapist you work with. Do your research to find one who is experienced and certified. Ask about their qualifications and experience in Swedish massage and what types of techniques they use.

You should also ask for references before committing to a session. Looking at past feedback will give you a better idea of what to expect.

For example, past customers may mention the massage therapist’s professionalism, skill level, or knowledge. This will help you make an informed decision and ensure that you are comfortable with your choice. Of course, you should only ever work with a massage therapist you feel comfortable with.

If they make you feel uncomfortable, it’s best to look elsewhere. If you’re ever unhappy with a session, don’t hesitate to find another therapist instead.

Required Number of Sessions

The number of sessions you will need depends on your individual needs and the results you want to achieve.

Generally, many people find that one-off massages are sufficient for dealing with acute pains and general relaxation. If you have chronic pain or an ongoing issue, several sessions may be necessary in order to get lasting relief.

If cost is a concern, some massage therapists may offer discounts for packages of multiple sessions. Make sure to ask about this when you make the appointment. In many cases, it can save you money in the long run.

It will also help you get the best massage experience.

Risk Factors

The good news is that Swedish massage is generally safe for most people. However, if you have any underlying medical conditions, such as heart disease or high blood pressure, it’s important to talk to your doctor before receiving a massage. This will help ensure that the massage therapist can adjust their technique accordingly and minimize risks.

You should also consider the massage therapist’s qualifications and experience before committing to a session. Inexperienced massage therapists may lack the skill and knowledge to provide a safe and effective massage. Keep in mind that therapists who are new to the industry aren’t always unreliable.

However, you will be rolling the dice by working with them. It’s always in your best interest to choose someone who is established.

Book a Swedish Massage Today

Swedish massage therapy is a safe and effective way to reduce stress, improve your mood, and promote overall health. Talk to your doctor to make sure it’s the right choice for you.

Looking for more information on how we can help? Feel free to get in touch with us today to see what we can do.