When you go for a massage with your partner you both come away feeling good, the positive benefits and effects of massage have been well documented. A perfect date night at the end of a long week could be a duo massage and dinner or a takeaway!
Or going for a massage with your partner can be a lovely experience, which you can enjoy together and some therapy centres like ours do duo treatments where you can have the massage together in the same room.
But what about learning some massage techniques to do on each other at home, can that be beneficial to both partner’s wellbeing?
Exciting new research has shown that giving a massage can be as beneficial as receiving one and that couples who give each other massage can improve their wellbeing. Researchers from Nothumbria University, Mrs. Sayui Naruse and Dr Mark Moss held a study on couples who had no previous massage experience. Couples were asked to give each other massages and the results were so impressive they are presenting their findings to the British Psychology Society’s annual conference in Brighton in May 2017. Mrs. Naruse said ‘These findings show massage as a simple and effective way for couples to improve their physical and mental wellbeing whilst showing affection for one another.’
The research concluded that both partners had a positive impact on their wellbeing, perceived stress and coping, whether they were giving the massage or receiving the massage. On the follow up 3 weeks after the end of the course the positive impact had not significantly decreased and 91% of couples said they would recommend mutual massages to their friends. It was so good that three quarters of the couples had kept doing the massages after the research! Mrs. Naruse said ‘Our data also suggests these positive effects of a short massage course may be long lasting – as is reflected in 74% of the sample continuing to use massage after the course has finished.’
Couples that have been on our short massage course said it was a good way to strengthen the bond and relationships, especially at times of life changes, pregnancy or stressful periods when affection can wane.
We run pregnancy workshops or one to one training in pregnancy massage so that the partner can learn a few basic massage techniques to use on the mum to be at home during the pregnancy and even in labour. This all aids with the bonding process and allows the partner feel more involved.
Massage is a great way to connect, most massage therapists love their job and there is a reason for that! Massage releases endorphins, feel good hormones as well as helping with pain, tension and stress. By caring for others, you also feel good and so both partners benefit.
To help your confidence with massage it is best to take a short course. You will learn some theory and get advice on when, where and how to do the massage. Then you will learn some techniques on each other which you can take home to use and practice. Anyone can massage, you don’t need big hands or strong arms, you will learn to use your body through your hands to apply pressure where it is needed. You don’t need any specialist equipment as massage can be done anywhere and you will learn how to position both yourself and your partner safely and comfortably. All you need is positive thought, a few techniques and massage will become a part of life together.
Amy Taylor – Founder of Purple Turtle Wellbeing, Therapy & Academy.
Amy also runs couple’s workshops and pregnancy duo massage – Contact us now for details.