Boost Your Massage Therapy Business with Gua Sha
Boosting your massage therapy business begins with offering patients a variety of treatments that bring optimum relief for their individual needs. Gua Sha – pronounced just like it’s spelled – is gaining popularity as this ancient Chinese healing technique is helping to ease pain while increasing business. Never heard of Gua Sha? Read on to learn more.
What is Gua Sha?
Gua Sha began in China over 2,000 years ago as part of acupuncture therapy to relieve chronic pain and toxic heat within the body. This needleless healing technique is a natural alternative therapy that involves scraping the skin to release trapped or stagnant energy, called “chi”. This process helps to improve circulation and increase blood flow, which practitioners believe may help reduce toxins in the body and promote healing.
How it’s practiced
A trained health care practitioner applies massage oil to the skin and uses a Gua Sha massage tool to scrape the skin with short or long strokes in a downward motion, activating capillaries beneath the skin’s surface. Gua Sha is typically performed on the back, buttocks, neck, arms and legs, beginning with mild pressure that is gradually increased, depending on the patient’s tolerance level. Gua Sha gets to the source of the pain and has been shown in some cases to provide immediate and long-lasting relief.
Gua Sha can also be performed on the face, but in a gentler manner. This process helps to increase blood flow and promote the skin’s own healing power. The result? A “lifting” effect that has patient’s seeing results in as little as one session.
Gua Sha works harmoniously with other modalities that include massage therapy, herbal medicine, acupuncture, and heat therapy in treating a variety of ailments and diseases.
Benefits to the patient
You’ve dedicated your career to ensuring the well-being of your patients, so it should come as no surprise that Gua Sha is getting more attention these days as an effective treatment for pain relief. A few benefits of adding Gua Sha to your practice include:
- Easing patient fears since no needles are used
- Helping patients with pain relief, which is almost immediate in some cases
- Rejuvenating the system
- Rebalancing energy flow by stimulating internal system
On a side note, the growing popularity of Gua Sha can enhance your practice and reputation as a massage therapy professional.
Patients are experiencing much needed relief from many of today’s chronic ailments, diseases and conditions. Gua Sha may be helpful in treating:
- Sports injuries
- Migraine headaches
- Tourette syndrome
- Common colds
- Perimenopausal symptoms
Benefits to practitioner
Relieving your patient’s pain may be the first priority, but what about the pain you yourself may experience that comes with the job? Some personal benefits Gua Sha can offer you include:
- Reduced occupational pain such as wear and tear on fingers and hands by using Gua Sha tool
- More focused treatment by accessing places that hands and fingers can’t access
- More effective deep tissue treatment is easier on hands
Swedish Institute’s Take
Dr. Ping Zhang, LMT, L.Ac., Ph.D., teaches a Gua Sha Body Re-Contouring course at Swedish Institute and weighs in on the benefits of the ancient Chinese healing technique. With over 20 years of combined experience in researching Chinese medicine and treating patients, Dr. Zhang explains how Gua Sha is a versatile modality that today’s practitioners should consider adding to their practices. “Chinese medicine is a treasure that we can all benefit from,” she said. “It’s an ‘East-meets-West’ mentality where we can apply the ancient healing principles from thousands of years ago and implement them to help treat some of today’s most chronic diseases and ailments. Ancient healing principles never die. They are a gift we can unwrap every day to use in modern times.”
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