Massage therapy is one of the most popular forms of healing today, with many different purposes and applications. It has proven to be especially useful to athletes, aiding in muscle recovery and helping to alleviate soreness. However, most of us know little about the origins of this type of healing, which has existed for nearly 4,000 years! Earliest origins were found in a Chinese medical text, which dates to approximately 1800 BC. Specific massage modalities, such as Reflexology for example, have also been depicted in Egyptian hieroglyphs as forms of hand and foot therapy.
When looking at western traditions, to where many of the forms of massage we’re most familiar with originate from, we’re transported to ancient Greece and the time of Hippocrates. Often considered the father of medicine and the author of the Hippocratic Oath, Hippocrates of Cos wrote in his memoirs,
“The physician must be experienced in many things but assuredly also in rubbing (anatripsis); for things that have the same name have not always the same effects. For rubbing can bind a joint that is too loose and loosen a joint that is too rigid…”
Galen of Pergamon, the famous Greek physician, used massage therapy to treat the ancient gladiators of Rome and Circus Maximus. We credit him for developing a complete regimen of massage techniques designed to help heal physical injuries. In essence he is the original innovator of what we today call sports massage, or orthopedic massage. Thus, although techniques and technologies have greatly evolved - it has been thousands of years since Hippocrates - the very same ideas and principles involving the human touch are still being used to heal the star athletes of today. Some things truly never go out of style.
Our approach at Grae Therapy greatly mirrors that of the creators of massage, and our end goal resembles that of Galen: to help restore your health and enable you to perform your best. Each injury is different just as no two people are the same, and that is reflected in the individualized care we provide each client. We’re available 24 hours a day and are here to not only ease the physical pains, but also lend an ear for other problems and issues. We look at health holistically and always say, “Recover, Restore and Rejuvenate.”