Both Acupressure and Swedish massages are great for relaxation and helping your body balance better, but each has unique technique and benefits that will help your body in a particular way.
Key Difference Between Acupressure and Swedish Massage
Acupressure is a traditional Chinese medicine technique that involves applying pressure to specific points on the body to promote healing, reduce pain, and balance the body’s energy flow. Swedish massage, on the other hand, is a Western massage technique that involves manipulating the muscles with long strokes, kneading, friction, and vibration.
In this article, I will explain the key differences between these two massage types and also let you know which type of massage is best for you based on your condition.
Swedish Massage Vs Acupressure [Key Differences]
Specific acupoints, or acupressure points, are said to be located along your body’s meridians or channels according to traditional Chinese medical philosophy. The acupoints and energy meridians that acupuncture uses as targets are the same. It is thought that qi (ch’i), or a life force, travels through these invisible channels.
These 12 major meridians are said to connect particular organs or networks of organs, establishing a communication system throughout your body. Your fingertips are the starting point for the meridians, which connect to your brain before reaching an organ connected to a certain meridian.
Acupressure practitioners exert pressure on acupoints on the body’s meridians using their palms, feet, fingers, elbows, or relevant gadgets and objects. Stretching is occasionally used with acupressure and other techniques.
Acupressure and other Asian bodywork techniques aim to balance the opposing forces of yin (negative energy) and yang (positive energy) and to restore health and harmony to the body’s energy pathways.
Acupressure’s supporters assert that it also treats the mind, emotions, and spirit in addition to the body’s energy fields and physical structure. Some people even think that therapists have the ability to transfer external qi, or life energy, to another person.
The Swedish massage is the kind that most people think of when they want to unwind at the spa. Effleurage, petrissage, tapotement, and friction are some of the specialized massage techniques that are used.
Effleurage entails long, gradual sliding motions over the top layer of your skin by the masseuse’s fingers or palm. Their hands may glide more easily over the area to be treated if oil is used. This motion is typically utilized at the beginning and finish of a Swedish massage.
On the other hand, petrissage entails rolling, kneading, and even lifting up the skin and muscles. This method assists in increasing blood flow to the area being worked on and is more concentrated on a particular muscle or set of muscles.
Tapotement, often known as percussion, entails rapid drumming or pounding motions. Additionally, by promoting blood flow, this Swedish massage technique aids in toning the skin or muscles being worked on.
The friction technique also applies deeper static pressure to certain tight or spasming areas. When the tightness subsides, the pressure is typically released after being applied for a short while with the fingers, thumb, or knuckles.
Often, acupressure is performed by an acupuncturist. The client can sit or lie on a plinth during the session, depending on the spots the professional needs to access. This treatment is best done in the professional’s practice.
On the other hand, Swedish massage can be done on a massage table in the comfort of your home, spa, massage parlor, or beauty salon.
3. Purpose and Benefits
The purpose of Acupressure is to stimulate specific acupoints. This will result in correctly balancing the energy between the meridians in your body and help maintain diseases and conditions such as stress and anxiety.
The purpose of Swedish massage is to help your body relax by releasing your happy hormones, such as Endorphins, into your bloodstream. This will immediately make you feel more relaxed and, in turn, release tension in your muscles.
Benefits of Acupressure Vs Swedish Massage
|Pregnancy-related pain and discomfort After surgery Arthritis Anxiety Chronic fatigue||Increases relaxation Reduces tension in your muscle Chronic headaches Increases blood flow Increases lymphatic flow|
In America, the cost of an acupressure session entirely depends on your location, the therapist you choose to book with, and the length of the session. Nevertheless, the national average price for a single acupressure treatment is between $40 and $100.
On the other hand, a Swedish massage can cost you between $40 to $100 for an hour-long session. You can have a 90-minute session or even a two-hour Swedish massage. Do not book longer than two hours at a time, as you will start to feel sick or dehydrated.
Acupressure can be done twice a week. Your therapist can give you points to push at home, which can be done four times a day until the point releases the energy and unblocks the meridian.
In my professional opinion, you can have a Swedish massage once a week for relaxation. In acute situations such as chronic headaches, muscle fatigue, and so on, you can have a session twice a week until you reduce the muscle tension enough to go back to a maintenance plan.
Once your Acupressure massage is done, there are a few steps you need to take to ensure you get the most out of your treatment. After your session, your therapist will give you a few acupressure points you can push at home as a home treatment. This will help keep your body aligned between your sessions.
On the other hand, the aftercare for a Swedish massage is similar to most massage treatments. You need to drink extra water the day of your massage so you do not get dehydrated, dizzy, and sick.
Acupressure Massage Vs Swedish – Which Is Better For You?
Chinese medicine believes that unblocking all of your meridians makes you calmer because your body is better able to handle stress.
In my professional opinion, Acupressure is ideal for those who live a stressful lifestyle, suffer from depression, or have trouble sleeping.
Acupressure and other deep tissue treatments may need to be prevented if any of the following situations exist:
- If a malignant growth is present or the disease has migrated to the bones, therapy is given there.
- You have a bone disease, spinal damage, or rheumatoid arthritis that could be aggravated by physical manipulation.
- You have venous thrombosis.
I believe that a Swedish massage is a treatment that everyone should have in their healthcare routine. It is ideal for all ages and is a softer massage which means it can be performed on those with thinner skin such as elderly people who are on blood thinners. Deeper pressure can cause bruising which will take a while to heal.
Swedish is a great treatment option for those with muscle tension, chronic headaches, and poor circulation around their joints.