Everyone’s Heard Of Hot Stone Massage, But What In The World Is Cold Stone Massage!?
Nothing like a good hot stone massage to relieve all that neck and shoulder tension! Do you know what a hot stone massage is? Have you ever done one? If not, you’re missing out.
The idea is that heat application makes the muscles more rigid and pliable, and therefore easier for a therapist to manipulate. Volcanic rocks, typically basalt rocks, are heated and then typically placed on various parts of the body such as the chest, back, palms, feet etc. With hot stones, it’s all about heat therapy and making maximum use of heat on the body!
Cold stone massage is the polar opposite of hot stone massage. In hot stone massage, the emphasis/focus is on heat. In cold stone massage, emphasis is on using cold to provide relief.
If you’ve grown up in a family with traditional “old school” cultures, you’ll know that both hot and cold have a place in treatment. If you bruised your knee or suffered a bit of a knock while playing sports, your mum would always apply some ice to help ease the pain. Similarly if you had a stiff neck, a hot bean bag might fix the trick!
So cold stones follow the same concept more or less.
However, cold stone massage can have incredible benefits, not just for pain relief but also other things. Let’s look at 4 incredible benefits that can be derived from a cold stone massage!
4 Ways A Cold Stone Massage Can Benefit You!
#1 It Reduces Inflammation….Greatly!
Let’s first understand the issue before we jump forward. What is inflammation and why is it an issue to begin with? When we say our muscles have become inflamed, what exactly do we mean?
No one likes weak, tired, and painful muscles! Have you noticed this: when you wake up with a stiff neck/back or too much shoulder pain, that one thing consumes the rest of your day!
You can try to distract your mind, but the overbearing pain keeps coming back and that’s all you can focus on. Until the pain is gone, you’re just not yourself! Have you experienced this? Leave a comment down below and let me know if you have.
One of the oldest ways to treat inflamed muscles is cold therapy. Many people apply ice packs to treat inflamed areas. Cold stones are also great because they give you more flexibility in terms of placement.
#2 It’s Very Relaxing When You Get Into It!
Although it may not sound like it, the feeling of cold stones laying along your spine can actually be quite relaxing, believe it or not!
#3 It Improves Range Of Motion & Flexibility By Reducing Pain!
Pain is usually a symptom of inflammation. When your muscles are inflamed, they are also usually in pain. In that sense, the 2 go hand in hand.
And that’s because moving around only exacerbates the pain! So pain as a result of inflammation in many ways makes one immobile.
One very good example is what you see with arthritis patients, especially those who are suffering from intense arthritis. The pain is so much that the patient would rather remain immobile than doing anything else.
Since inflammation and pain go hand in hand, if we eliminate inflammation, we also eliminate pain as a result.
If we remove pain then all of a sudden we have greater range of motion and more flexibility. It’s basically a domino effect!
#4 It Improves Sinus Congestion!
This might be surprising to some of you, but it’s absolutely true! Cold stones has been known to be an effective way for treating sinus congestion.
What I really love about this is that it’s completely natural! Rather than treating sinus congestion by using steroid nasal sprays, I would much rather use cold stone therapy. Some folks have even noticed an improvement to headaches/migraines when using cold stones placed on the face/forehead for some amount of time.
Is Cold Stone Massage Safe? Can Anyone Do It?
Is cold stone massage safe for everyone? In my opinion it’s more safer than hot stone massage which if not done carefully may result in burns. All that being said, there are still dangers with cold stone massage. For example, one might have sensitive skin whereby an undesirable reaction is the result when subjected to cooler surfaces for extended periods of time.
Before commencing any therapeutic treatment, checking with your physician beforehand is always a good rule of thumb. It may sound like overkill to some, but better to be safe than sorry is the way I see it!
Can Cold Stone Massage Be Done At Home? If So, Where Can I Buy A Cold Stone Massage Set?
There’s nothing stopping you from doing cold stone massage right from the confines of your home! The only tricky bit is placement. What I mean by that is it might be a little difficult for you to place the stones on yourself, especially on various parts of the back.
Otherwise, cold stones are readily available and Amazon has some interesting selections to pick from. Here are my 2 favourites!
#1 Master Massage 9 Pcs Marble Stone Set
This is a pretty neat set of cold stones you can find on Amazon. There’s 2 things in particular that I really like about this:
Oh and I forgot to mention that it comes in a nifty little drawstring bag, so you can carefully store them once you’re done.
#2 Zabrina 4 Pcs Cold Stone Massage Set
Another decent buy on Amazon that’s slightly different from #1 in that all 4 stones are the same size. For those who intend to not only place cold stones on the body but also massage the body using the cold stones, having similarly sized stones definitely makes things easier!
Just as #1, these stones are marble.
How Do You Properly “Cool” A Cold Stone? Cold Stone Massage Be Done At Home?
It’s pretty simple actually. You have one of 2 choices:
With both of the above, the best way is to experiment and see what works best for you. Some people prefer placing in the freezer, while others preferring soaking in ice water. Try them both and see what you like most!
And That’s Pretty Much All You Need To Know About Cold Stone Therapy!
And that’s a wrap folks. If you plan on using cold stones at home, please always remember to be cautious. If you find the stones too cold, or experience some discomfort during the process, it’s best to halt.
If you have any unanswered questions, please drop a comment down below and I’ll be sure to respond. Be well and I’ll see you in the next post!