Massage stones are nonporous rocks, such as basalt and plain river rocks, that retain heat or cold well. The smooth surface is gentler on the skin during massages and will not absorb natural body oils. The benefits of using massage stones include pain relief, muscle relaxation, stress reduction and increased circulation.
1. Heat the crock pot on a low temperature (between 120 and 150 degrees), filled with an assortment of massage stones, a half-hour before use. Use the slotted spoon or tongs to pull out the stones needed. Test the temperature of each stone on your forearm and adjust the temperature on the crock pot accordingly. If a massage stone is too hot, dip it into the bowl of cool water. Optionally, place some stones into the bowl of cold water for later use on the face.
2. With a client, mentally divide the body into five areas in the following order: the back of the legs, the back, the face, the arms when the body is facing up and the front of the legs.
3. During the focus on the back of the legs, place small stones between the toes that will rest comfortably but not fall out.
4. Rest golf ball-sized round stones on the palms.
5. Place medium (palm-sized) flat stones on various areas of the exposed body parts not currently being massaged. For example, on one leg, place the flat side of the stone on the middle of the calf, back of the knee, middle of the thigh and upper thigh while you massage the other leg. When focusing on the upper back, place massage stones on the lower back and sacrum. Arrange the stones so that they do not slip off the body nor crowd up against each other.
6. Use two medium, round rocks, each that comfortably fits in a cupped hand, to massage the body. Use enough oil to slide the rocks—using the palms and fingers—across the body surface smoothly. The stones are to be extensions of the arms and not only independent tools. Using long strokes, follow the grain of the muscle. Massage with light pressure at first and increase it as the muscles warm up. The use of the massage stones penetrate deeply and heavy pressure is often unnecessary. Ask the client about the pressure level.
7. When finished massaging an area, place stones on the area and remove the stones from the next body part to be massaged
8. Before helping the patient rotate face-up, remove all massage stones from the body.
9. When massaging a small area, such as the face, use your hands rather than the stones. Place small cooled (or warmed) stones on the face afterward: one on the forehead, one on each cheek and one on the chin.
10. After completing the massage, remove all stones. Clean and disinfect the stones thoroughly.
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