Massages: Not just a luxury, but also medical therapy

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RAPID CITY, S.D. -

What was once seen as a just a luxury, is now getting a bit more medical attention. Massages are being recognized as not only a way to relax, but also a natural way of healing.

Licensed massage therapist at Sorella Massage Studio, Sarah Weber, said that people come into the studio for several different reasons.

"I'd say clients come in for a variety of reasons,” Weber said. “Some come in just for relaxation and to escape the stress of everyday life. And then we have a lot of patients that come in with chronic pain or chronic problems that they're trying to get rid of."

Sorella Massage Studio’s other licensed massage therapist, JJ Buckley, said that the studio often works side-by-side with medical professionals.

"Relaxation is a big part of it, obviously, and you want to get the muscles relaxed anyway,” Buckley said. “However, the therapeutic part that we're into - we work different body structures, different body muscles, different body parts. We work in conjunction with medical doctors, chiropractors, physical therapists."

According to the Mayo Clinic, studies demonstrate that massages are an effective treatment for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension. Other studies have also shown that it may be helpful for anxiety, headaches and even digestive disorders.

"It increases the circulation, it decreases depression, anxieties, stress - which is a huge factor in so much of life,” Weber said. “We can take into consideration what the doctors are telling us … so for us, it's more integrative and we'll use a bunch of different moves to come in and try to solve the problem."

In fact, according to the American Massage Therapy Association, 78 percent of individuals claimed their primary reason for receiving a massage was for medical reasons.

"I think that if you can have a more holistic approach and try some other paths or avenues that don't include a daily drug or an experimental surgery or exploratory surgery - if you can get to a point of feeling good and get rid of that dis-ease without having anything invasive in your body - that's really the best way to go, in my opinion," Weber said.

Sorella Massage Studio offers several different types of massages, focusing on a certain issue or the client’s individual need.

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