Massage & Bodyworks
Massage is the most popular complementary therapy practised today. To massage is to knead, to soothe, to transform and to heal.
Historically massage has existed in all cultures around the world, the first scripted forms are from the middle east and China. In China it takes 3 years or more to train as a masseuse in Tui Na, it is a highly valued treatment that is placed aside traditional medicine in hospitals where it is used to treat a wide range of health conditions. Further east in Japan, Shiatsu is practice and like in China, it is common practice to wear loose comfortable clothes as this massage is practised dry over clothing without a massage medium like oil. Both these systems tune into the acupressure points and meridians aiming to influence the prana or chi (energy or life force) akin to most massage therapies practised in the east. Reflexology also from China is performed on the feet and hands with the goal of stimulating and balancing acupressure points that correlate with the main physiological systems of the body. Thai massage is similar to Tui Na & Shiatsu with its attention to acupressure points and meridians with the addition of yogic like stretches. Ayurvedic massage from India differs from its neighbours in that is uses a massage medium such as sesame oil, aiming to restore physical and emotional balance based upon the dosha system. The eponymous Indian head massage is stress relieving and good for tension migraines. Conversely, in the west, a more bio-mechanically form of massage is practised and taught with an emphasis on the anatomical structure and muscular system probably owing practice of modern medicine. This can be seen in styles such as Swedish, sports, deep and soft tissue treatments which offer a wide range of techniques to reduce muscular and skeletal tension and adhesions, a massage medium like almond oil is used. Popularised over the past 20 years is myofascial release massage which was born out of Rolfing which considers the interconnectedness of the facia/connective tissue and how that can cause restriction, discomfort, and pain in other regions of the body, deep stretching and pressure is used to achieve this. Body psychotherapy focuses on the release of emotions and trauma when working with the body, often combined with breathwork this is a deeply powerful bodywork practice. Cranial-sacral therapy is concerned with feeling, unravelling and balancing a subtle wave-like phenomena felt predominantly at the cranium and sacrum region although this can be felt all over the body. The Maya abdominal massage is renowned for helping with digestive and reproductive disorders.
Regardless of styles and origins, massage remains a very intuitive and nurturing response which we all do without thought. When we knock our self we rub the injured area to soothe away the pain and discomfort. It’s very common to see a pregnant woman rub her tummy by way of soothing her child within. After eating a big dinner we rub our tummy to aid digestion. We embrace our friends and family to infer warmth and connection, we touch, which is vital for human life.
Jo began her training in holistic therapies learning a wide variety of massage techniques and over the past 20 years through her studies, work in the far east and travelling around the world she has learned from most massage and bodywork disciplines; east and west, physical, emotional and energetic. Her treatments are always personalized, focusing on the patients’ needs and underpinned with holism. She explores the style that patients are inspired by and enjoy. In practice, she draws from all her skills and techniques, which can be soft and energetic or strong and deep movements. She uses breathe work and meditation techniques. She practices massage over clothing or using a massage medium directly on the body. The whole body can be treated or the treatment can focus on specific areas like back and shoulder, abdomen or feet & hands (Reflexology). Jo also practices aromatherapy whereby she invites patients to smell the essences blind to discover their bespoke therapeutic blend which changes from session to session. All are optional for the patient to choose from. Her ultimate goals are to tune-in to each body, allowing her hands to be her ears and following her intuition to provide a truly immersive healing experience. Jo will often say it's like showing the body its way back home.
Therapeutic Benefits of Massage & Bodyworks
De-stressing & relaxing, good for a wide range of stress-related conditions e.g. insomnia, anxiety, low mood, releasing trauma & stress, tempers dementia symptoms
Muscular & Skeletal System
Arthritis, osteoarthritis, strains, sprains, RSI, carpal tunnel syndrome, fibromyalgia, back pain, improved range of movement, reduce muscle tension
Conception, Pre-natal & Postnatal
Helpful for conception by relieving congestions around the abdomen and reproductive system. Oedema of legs and feet, muscular skeletal pain, headaches. Bonding with the baby during and after pregnancy. Reflexology for inducing delayed or paused labour.
Lowers blood pressure and improves cardiovascular integrity
Improves digestion & elimination, reduces bloating and wind. Reduces nausea caused by chemotherapy
The above is by no means exhaustive but offers an insight into the wide range of therapeutic benefits massage has to offer.
Jo treats adults and children. Treatments are available for 60 or 90 minutes. Treatment courses of 3 and 6 sessions are also available.
Pregnancy Massage – 60-minute session maximum for first-time patients. A specialist pregnancy massage table is available, this allows the patients to lie on their front as a section of the table is cut out to allow the baby bump to be held in a towel sling. Alternatively, cushions can be used and the patient is positioned on their side.
Children – 30-60 minute session
Bookings can be made by calling or texting Jo on 07925 515120
or by email