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June 19, 2019

Shoulder Pain: Find Relief in a Good Shoulder Massage

Have you ever had one of those moments when your shoulders felt absolutely tight from ongoing stress or anxiety? How about those times when it felt too painful to move your shoulders after strenuous physical activity?

If so, then you've probably considered getting a shoulder massage once or twice to deal with the muscle tension and to relieve the feeling of soreness and aching.

But what makes a good and effective shoulder massage, exactly?

To understand the effectiveness of massage therapy for shoulder pain, let's first start off with the basics.

Shoulder structure and function

Did you know that your shoulders are made up of muscles, tendons, and joints that work together to allow your body to do various movements?

You heard that right.

Your shoulder is one of the largest, most complex, and important structures in your body. From seemingly usual tasks like scratching your back, to athletic and sport-oriented ones like swinging a tennis racket, you have your shoulders to thank for.

So, what happens when something goes wrong with the shoulder structure?

You may feel anywhere from the range of mild discomfort to intense and excruciating pain. This explains why, when you have pain and/or injury in your shoulders, it feels like your movements are quite limited. Because when something (like a muscular knot or inflammation) comes in the way of its normal structure and function, you feel a radiating discomfort and pain.

Managing shoulder pain and discomfort

So how do you treat pain in your shoulders?

There are many options to go for whenever you feel like your shoulder pain becomes unbearable and gets in the way of your everyday life. While some take over the counter pain relievers for temporary relief, many others prefer natural and healing in the form of a focused or targeted massage therapy.

Techniques used in a shoulder massage

Want to know the techniques behind effective shoulder massage therapy?

Let’s dive in.

There are several techniques used in shoulder massage therapy. And if you ask a therapist who not only knows how to massage shoulders but is also good at it, you’ll find out that there are about four common massage movements executed. These are:

  • Skin rolling
  • Kneading
  • Trigger pointing
  • Acupressure

But, how do these movements differ?

Skin rolling

Typically, every shoulder massage starts with skin rolling. This technique involves fingers that push and pull slowly across the muscles of the shoulders. The finger movements feel like they are pinching your skin while pulling away along the length of the trapezius muscle.


Ever kneaded a handful of dough?

Shoulder kneading is quite similar in terms of the movements done. Here your shoulders are squeezed alternately by the hands of your massage therapist, loosening tightened and tense muscles in the area.

Trigger pointing

Got some knots in your shoulder muscles that lead to pain in your upper back area?

The trigger pointing technique in a shoulder massage therapy can take care of that. This is done by rubbing and pressing the fingers firmly on areas that are called trigger points. Trigger points are hyperirritable spots in skeletal muscle fibers that become painful when left irritated and untreated. Done properly, trigger point technique during a shoulder massage helps relieve pain from muscle knots in your shoulder region.


Now check this out.

Another technique used during a shoulder massage is called acupressure. Following the ancient Chinese practice that identifies and targets points (acupoints) in your body’s meridian, acupressure during a shoulder massage is all about placing enough finger pressure on these acupoints to relieve you of pain and discomfort.

Benefits of a shoulder massage

So, what do you get after a good shoulder massage?

First, you get relaxation and stress-relief from the caring hands that deliver massage therapy. Or if you have an Osaki massage chair like the Osaki first class or a Panasonic MA73 and the MAJ7 massage chair, then you can get the same benefit every day within the comfort of your own home.

Next, you get relief from aches and pains caused by tight, recurrent, and stubborn knots in the fibres of your shoulder’s muscles. You also get increased blood flow in the area as the massage warms up the shoulder region. In turn, more oxygen and nutrients flow towards your shoulder area and facilitate natural healing.

So here it is:

If you have pain in your shoulders caused by knots in your muscle fibers or you feel tightness in the area due to constant stress and tension, you can definitely find relief with a good shoulder massage. And whether you prefer skin rolling, kneading, trigger pointing, acupressure, or a combination of any of these four methods, effective shoulder massage executed in the proper way can bring you that much-needed relaxation and comfort that your body deserves.