Sarah Davies Therapies

Clinical & Therapeutic Massage

Headaches, Pregnancy & Post-partum

Nantgarw | Pontypridd

FAQ's Deep Tissue Massage

After 12 years of being a massage therapist, and the last 3 spent helping people in pain recover with deep tissue massage, I have discovered a lot of misunderstandings and misconceptions. Here are the top 5 questions I get asked about deep tissue massage.


1) What is Deep Tissue Massage?

Deep Tissue Massage is the management, manipulation and rehabilitation of soft tissues. Simply put, it helps keep muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia soft and flexible to improve how they work, reduce pain and help recover after injuries caused by repetitive movement or sport.


2) How Does Deep Tissue Massage Differ to Swedish?

Swedish Massage is the foundation for all massage. If you go for a massage and you’re unsure of the style, it’s probably Swedish. Swedish Massage is mainly long flowing strokes that usually has one objective – to ease muscle tension. It’s great for relaxation and perfect if you don’t have any injuries (think your typical Spa massage). Deep Tissue Massage focuses more on the mechanics of the body and works the deeper muscles, fascia, tendons and ligaments, opposed to just the superficial layers, or top muscles in Swedish.


3) How Does Deep Tissue Massage Differ to Sports Massage?

They are both very similar in approach, the main difference is sports massage has a faster pace with short, fast strokes, where as deep Tissue is slow and deep. We wait for the muscles to melt and relax, rather than applying pressure and forcing them to.

Deep tissue is a unique style of massage that works deeper, both physically and emotionally. There’s something magical about holding a tight muscle and watching it melt as it relaxes in its own time.


4) Does Deep Tissue Massage Hurt?

Lots of people tell me they’ve had Sports Massage before, and it was pretty painful both during and after, so they expect Deep Tissue to hurt too.

Generally, Deep Tissue Massage isn’t more painful because it goes deeper. Many people are surprised by how relaxing and gentle it feels. Like with any massage, if you are experiencing pain or discomfort, a manipulation will make the area more sensitive, but usually, the discomfort eases as the muscle relaxes.

Compared to Sports Massage, there is less discomfort the next day with little to no bruising, so people generally better straight after the massage.


5) Can Anyone Get a Deep Tissue Massage?

Massage is suitable for all ages, from babies to the elderly. It can help with a wide range of issues from tension headaches to pregnancy aches and pains.

The only time someone would not be suitable is when there are cardiovascular conditions that are unstable, such as Deep Vein Thrombosis or during a flare-up of inflammatory conditions like arthritis. Massage can help recovery from surgery, once open wounds are healed. It can also benefit those following treatment from cancer, once treatment has ended.


If you’d like to know if massage is suitable for you, or if you have any other questions, please feel free to contact me.