ayurvedic pregnancy massage – frequently asked questions
Welcome to the miraculous and richly rewarding world of motherhood and congratulations! Here you will find some of the most frequent questions we receive about this gently relaxing and very therapeutic experience for expectant and new mothers alike…
Is pregnancy massage safe?
It goes without saying that pregnancy massage (or indeed any other massage) should only be conducted by an experienced and qualified therapist. For your assurance and absolute confidence, our therapist’s accreditations are available on our homepage, under ‘Your Therapist’.
You may therefore be assured that with Prana, massage therapy is safe and incredibly beneficial throughout pregnancy, including the first trimester. However, getting a massage is akin to gentle exercise for your body – it increases your blood and lymph circulation and makes your heart work just a bit harder. We do advise you to contact your doctor or obstetrician before your massage because he or she will know of any existing conditions or potential complications and advise you accordingly.
Enjoy the experience. Relax – we are ever vigilant to protect both you and baby…
What is Ayurvedic pregnancy massage exactly?
Ayurvedic pregnancy massage puts emphasis on both emotional and physical caring practices for the pregnant woman and her unborn child. Practitioners of Ayurveda (as Prana is) believe that there is a strong link between the mother’s wellbeing and the health of the baby, starting from inception through to the birth itself.
Moreover, that the baby’s character, physical features and health begin with the mother and her pre-pregnancy status. Mums to be give a lot of their vital energy to the baby growing in the womb, and massage helps them maintain this energy throughout – post natal, it also restores and replenishes this essential energy.
What techniques are used – where, and why?
Ayurvedic pregnancy massage uses gentle and repetitive strokes on the whole body, including head, hands and feet (which contain some of the densest areas of nerve endings and acupressure points). This repetition of strokes relaxes the nervous system and the mind, whilst the application of warm ayurvedic oil is soothing and nourishing for the skin (and a great preventative for stretch marks!) as well as for the joints and muscles; keeping them supple. And whilst each movement deliberate and conforms with Ayurvedic principles, the outcome for you is blissfully comforting and relaxing.
Worthy of note: there is never a ‘one size fits all’ approach at Prana. Your individual characteristics, needs, condition and pregnancy related discomforts (if any) come first, always.
Are pregnancy massages recommended by traditional health practitioners?
They are, with two important caveats. Firstly, if you are experiencing a high-risk pregnancy or complications of any kind, we take our responsibilities to you very seriously and always act in accordance with the advice of your midwife or doctor.
Secondly, since your body is particularly sensitive to different types of contact, your safety and comfort is paramount. Thus, training in this specific area of massage is a prime requisite – no ifs, no buts. Rest assured, you are in fully trained, safe and caring hands with Prana.
How is Ayurvedic pregnancy massage different to other types of massage?
The essential difference is that with pregnancy massage we are preparing you for labour emotionally and physically (though basic principles of massage therapy apply whether you are pregnant or not).
With pregnancy massage, particular attention is paid to the sensitivities of your body and the growing child within you. For instance, we are careful to avoid placing too much pressure on areas of additional strain such as the legs and the abdomen.
As well, your changing shape dictates the way you are positioned (we may place you on your side or in a semi-reclining position) in concert with a range of pillow and bolsters to ensure your comfort and safety.
What are the specific aims of pregnancy massage?
Whilst all massage types reduce emotional stress, anxiety and nervous tension, both pre and post pregnancy massages are specifically focused on:
• relieving muscle cramps and spasms (especially in the lower back, neck, hips and legs)
• increasing blood and lymph circulation, to help reduce swelling
• reducing stress on weight-bearing joints
• improving the experience of labour and easing labour pain
• promoting more restful sleep and insomnia episodes
• relaxing the baby with gentle stroke movements to the abdomen
Post natal, we are primarily supporting the body’s recovery to pre-pregnancy condition, easing tension caused by the new demands on your body and restoring emotional and hormonal stability. Vitally, post natal massage plays an important part in the relief of post partum blues.
Mums, and mums-to-be, we honour you. Remember, we are here for you and welcome your enquiries. If you have questions we haven’t covered here, just call 9316 1553 and we will attend ~ Saroj. Prana