The non-Swedish Origins of Swedish Massage

Here in America we like to classify things based on their origin. French fries, Chinese checkers, English muffins, Turkish baths, Danish pastries, Canadian bacon, etc. (Sure is a lot of food in this list!) For the most part, these items or practices did, in fact, originate in the country specified. But in the case of Swedish massage, the association with Sweden may be a complete misrepresentation of the true source of this therapy.Swedish Massage is, by far, the most popular form of massage in the United States. This type of massage is intended to increase oxygen in the blood and remove toxins from muscles. This is accomplished by using a variety of techniques that apply pressure to surface muscles with movements that follow the direction of blood flow to the heart. The result is improved circulation, reduced stress, relaxed muscles, greater flexibility and improved overall health and wellness.Traditionally, the development of the techniques of Swedish massage is credited to Pehr Henrik Ling whom Wikipedia, the online-encyclopedia, describes as a “medical-gymnastic practitioner.” Now I don’t know about you but the term “gymnastics” conjures some pretty specific images in my mind and none of them are medically related. Tumbling, balancing, swinging and sticking a landing are what comes to mind. But apparently gymnastics, in its past life, included a variety of disciplined activities intended to improve overall health and physical performance. These activities were actually quite similar to calisthenics and other exercise regimens practiced today and very little like gymnastics as we would interpret the term.Pehr Henrik Ling was intellectually curious for all of his life. He was a voracious reader and developed a great appreciation for languages. This fascination with languages led to a desire for travel and Ling spent time sailing on Danish ships. It was on these ships that Ling was introduced to the sport of fencing. He found himself a quite adept competitor and soon his prowess was renowned. Eventually, he was invited to teach fencing at the University of Upsala in his native Sweden.Now pay close attention because here is where things get murky. Apparently, at some point, Mr. Ling developed some rather painful joint malady. But he was quite a disciplined fellow and maintained a regular routine of fencing exercises. Over time, his joint problem dissipated and he attributed the “cure” to his fencing routines. This healing inspired Ling to bone up on anatomy and physiology and to give serious consideration to the relationship between health and exercise.Around this time Sweden was recovering from a failed military confrontation with the forces of Napoleon. The military setback was a grave concern of the King of Sweden who began exploring methods of improving the prowess and effectiveness of the members of the Swedish military. When Pehr Ling got wind of this he arranged to see the King to present the techniques that he had been developing which Ling now referred to as “military gymnastics.” His techniques were primarily focused on fencing and marching activities.At first Ling’s offer of assistance was rebuffed. But Pehr Henrik Ling was a determined character and he persisted in his efforts to convince the King and his advisors that his methods would be beneficial to the military. Finally, they relented and Ling was appointed the director of the newly established Central Institute of Gymnastics. Here Ling was able to put his methods into practice and refine his techniques.Ling and his associates began to focus on the therapeutic benefits of the use of specific physical movements. Sessions with groups and individuals became more interactive as Ling and his team used their methods to address specific physical complaints. Particular attention was focused on the lever actions of joints and exercises were devised that applied resistance to the movement of these joint areas. “Military gymnastics” were now becoming known as “medical gymnastics.”These techniques had little resemblance to massage as we know it today. While there was a hands-on relationship between therapist and subject, the activities were more like those used by physical therapists than massage therapists. Ling’s perspective on the practices he was developing was evolving and he began to consider the relationship between the physical and mental aspects of wellness, the mind/body connection, if you will. Certainly, this consideration is very much a part of Swedish Massage and other massage modalities.But, in fact, Pehr Henrik Ling and his followers were not using or advocating massage as a therapy. Ling’s theories and practices were eventually refined and adapted and are the basis for much of techniques used by physical therapists as well as the aerobic, cardio-vascular and strength and resistance programs commonly practiced in gyms and health clubs throughout the world.So where is the connection, if any, between Sweden and Swedish Massage?Well, it seems that the methods advocated by Ling became known as the Swedish Movement System. As we noted earlier, physical movement was a principal component of Ling’s gymnastic techniques. It seems that descriptions of these movements and methods were interpreted by later readers to be similar to the five classic techniques associated with what we call Swedish Massage. They are, of course:o Effleurage: Long, gliding strokeso Petrissage: Lifting and kneading the muscleso Friction: Firm, deep, circular rubbing movementso Tapotement: Brisk tapping or percussive movementso Vibration: Rapidly shaking or vibrating specific musclesIn fact, these particular techniques were developed and named by Dr. Johan George Mezger a Dutch physician. Apparently, when researching Pehr Henrik Ling’s techniques in later years, researchers noticed some similarities between descriptions of Ling’s techniques and the terms already in use as defined by Mezger. These terms were applied to Ling’s methods and, because he practiced in the decades before Mezger, he received credit for developing and naming these techniques. The Swedish Movement System somehow became known as the Swedish Massage System.In Sweden, there is no such thing as Swedish Massage. This approach to massage is referred to as “classic massage.” If it were to be associated with any country, it should be referred to as “Dutch Massage” which, somehow, doesn’t have the same exotic appeal. Pehr Henrik Ling deserves a great deal of credit for the methods and techniques he developed and promoted. Swedish Massage, however, was not one of them.

Selecting the Best Contractor For Your Home Improvement Project

Maintaining or renovating a home can be a very daunting task for most people. However, after all the hard work and investment in time and resources you have allocated for a home improvement project, the satisfaction of seeing a superbly crafted home that you can call your own can be priceless indeed. Such is the importance of choosing the best and most qualified contractor who is knowledgeable and capable enough to turn your vision into a remarkable work of art.When choosing a contractor for repairs or renovations for your home improvement project, it is vital that you first acquire all the important information about a particular contractor before ever committing in getting their services. You need to make sure that they are capable of performing all the inclusive work, including customized builds and improvements that you would want your home to have. To get all these pertinent information, you should ask your contractors a strategic set of questions designed to extract all the data that you will need. To help you start in this direction, you should ask the following set of questions:* Does the contractor have the appropriate knowledge and experience with the type of home improvement project that you have in mind?According to recent information from the industry, approximately 80 percent of contractors and builders are knowledgeable and are adequately trained in the latest construction and building techniques. However, even though they may have the training with these new techniques and the certifications to show for it (ex: techniques in energy-saving green building technologies, etc), their actual experience may have just been picked up or even achieved as they work on new projects. On some cases, the home renovation projects may involve a historic home with irreplaceable artifacts or sections. A contractor may not have the expertise in dealing with such a home nor could they match the craftsmanship involved with these historic masterpieces.* Is there an existing relationship between your contractor and architect/designer and have they worked together on a project before?For your home improvement project, you may take on the services of some of the best architects and interior designers in the whole of Massachusetts. To complement the expertise of these professionals, it is but proper to also get the services of the best contractors for the project. In such cases, it would be best to choose a contractor whom your architect or designer knows. They may be aware of the track record of these contractors and may be comfortable working with some that they can identify. With such arrangements, you can be assured of a timely completion of your project and in the manner that you envisioned it to be.* When you inquire something about the project, does the contractor communicate well with you?It is a normal thing for homeowners to ask something about a home remodeling project from their contractors. However, if all you get is a hasty answer without much details and it would appear that they want you off their faces, then be careful of such contractors. A good contractor should be receptive of the needs of their clients and should be ready to discuss every detail of the project should you ask for it.* Is the contractor experienced in working with your kind of home?A commercial construction is different from a home construction in terms of details and even on building and safety codes. The contractor should be adept in the type of home that you have, otherwise they might turn your priced possession into their laboratory for trial-and-error building methods.* How fast can the contractor start and how soon can they complete the job?Finding the best contractor is one thing, but having them start on your home as per schedule is another. You might be at the end of a long list of clients and would have to sit it out for months on end. You should weigh the urgency of having the work done as soon as possible or getting the services of the best contractor that you can get.* Is there a guarantee for their work after completion?A competent contractor will give you the assurance of an excellent renovation or repair work and will provide you with a guarantee on the work done. They should be confident enough of the quality of their work and give their clients the assurance that they need.Conducting a one-of-a-kind home improvement project for your Massachusetts home entails the best services from the best professionals available for the job. Taking a few extra moments in checking out your contractors before hiring them can spell the difference between a disastrous undertakings or a magnificent work of art you can call your home.

Treat Your Food and Drink Allergies

Certain food and drink allergies can make you very uncomfortable in few situations, keeping you always suspicious of what you are about to eat or drink. This can affect a human in a many different ways. Just think about it! How easy it is to have the same food every day you are already bored with? Well let me give you a clue, ”It’s NOT Easy.”Even worse factor is, in some of the cases when you were able to enjoy a certain food or drink, but in the meanwhile you have developed an allergic reaction to it. It surely is very unpleasant to hunger after a certain food and to resent it at the same time because you anticipate the disagreeable effects it will have on you.Food and Drink sensitivityThe way you get allergic reaction is when a specific enzymes in the product you are having can not tolerate some chemical or natural substance of it.The main symptoms are: gas, constipation, diarrhea, IBS, skin rash, headaches, and cough.From another point of view, allergy is an immune response to some allergens, or food proteins that generate the allergy, and has a partially different symptomatology: soft tissues (tongue, lips, eyelids, etc.) swelling lesions itches vomiting culminating anaphylactic shock.Most common Food generating allergies include milk, eggs, seafood, shellfish, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, and wheat.Aloeride effectivenessNow there is a easy way to regain the possibility of using food and drinks banned for long time from your diet. Few cases reports an increased tolerance to substances you could never even think to ingest again after undergoing terrible reactions to them. The fact that Aloeride performs on the immunity system guarantees that allergic reactions, as immunity responses to some mixtures found in food or drinks, can be dealt with. Using Aloeride for drink or food allergies doesn’t really mean you should go and grab everything you had allergy before with. It would be really irresponsible from your side, however Aloeride may actually surprise you, it offers you an opportunity to learn simple things like rightfully appreciated food, especially after a period of constant prohibition and frustration.