People seek massage for two reasons: they want to feel good, or they want to stop feeling bad.
For someone who’s feeling stressed, who just wants to chill and be soothed, a good relaxation-style massage is wonderful. Relaxation-style treats the body by kneading tight muscles and gentle-touch techniques on the skin. This lowers the resting tone of the sore muscles. It includes sensory experiences with long flowing strokes, slow deep breathing, pleasurable rocking of the limbs to allow release of tension, and music designed to lower stress.
But if someone hurts, like from an old injury or a demanding job, they want the pain to go away. They get the best relief from therapeutic massage. I mostly practice two forms: (1) deep-tissue myofascial, which is done through gentle-but-deep pressure combined with moving the muscle, aka “Soft Tissue Release,” and (2) a modified style of structural integration, a contemporary form of Rolfing called “Myofascial Integration — Posture Alignment (MIPA).” Most clients feel lasting, positive change within three sessions.
Rolfing is quite different from massage. In fact, it is so distinct that I have a separate website and a separate business name for that practice. See more at Structural Integration Niagara.