Massage Therapies

chronic pain massage portsmouth
massage therapies myofascial release

Below is a complete description of the massage therapies I use when treating clients. The type of therapy used is completely dependent upon the diagnosis of the underlying issue and more often than not they are combined to form a treatment plan.

The navigation list below will quickly take you to the therapy description.

Myoskeletal Alignment

This is a type of bodywork which blends the principles of osteopathy and structural integration to relieve acute and chronic pain. The techniques are integrated into regular bodywork sessions or can be used alone to treat systemic problems. The focus of this technique is on back and neck pain since this type of pain is extremely common.

  • Relieves chronic pain.
  • Reduces the potential for acute pain to become chronic.
  • Integrated into Massage and other bodywork sessions so client gets full benefits.
  • Focus is mainly back and neck pain.

Spinal Mobilisation

Mobilisation techniques for the spine, thorax and pelvis are commonly performed for the treatment of pain and dysfunction. The stretch techniques are very safe and effective and cause no discomfort during during application.

  • Gentle for client.
  • Extremely safe.
  • Releases hypertonic muscles at a deeper level.
  • Restores normal function to facet joints.

Muscle Energy Techniques (MET)

Muscle Energy Techniques (MET) are a form of osteopathic manipulative diagnosis and treatment in which the patients muscles are actively used on request (by the client contracting their muscle for a short length of time) from a precise controlled position, in a specific direction, whilst the therapist executes a counterforce.

METs are unique in their application, as the patient is providing the initial effort and the Therapist is just facilitating the process.

  • Restoring normal tone in tight muscles.
  • Strengthening weak muscles.
  • Preparing muscles for subsequent stretching.
  • Increasing joint mobility.
  • Boosting local circulation.
  • Improving musculoskeletal function.

Myofascial Release (MFR)

The fascia is a thin, tough, elastic web of connective tissue that wraps and connects most structures within the human body forming meridian lines of Myofascia. The tissue can become restricted due to overuse, trauma, and inactivity resulting in pain, muscle tension, and restricted movement.

Release of these meridians involves working on dry skin prior to massage, sinking through soft tissue, finding the line of tension and dragging the fascia until the release is felt. This is mildly uncomfortable for the client.

  • Increased flexibility.
  • Improved joint range.
  • Better blood supply to muscle.
  • Improved posture.
  • Release of pain.

Advanced Remedial Massage

Advanced Remedial Massage is used to benefit, normalize and improve musculoskeletal problems (pain that affects the muscles, ligaments and tendons, and bones.). It focuses on resolving specific physical issues, promoting the body’s own healing mechanisms and to prevent further injury from recurring.

Advanced Remedial massage therapy covers many techniques. The usual effleurage, petrissage and tapotement movements of Swedish massage are further enhanced by the use of deep frictions; soft-tissue release; neuromuscular techniques; and muscle energy techniques.

I use these techniques to locate the injured muscle fibres and points of pain, along with implementing a program of assisted stretches that help break down scar tissue, increase range of movement in the joints to promote healing and develop long term injury prevention.

Some of these techniques are painful, but always within your pain threshold.

Treatment sessions last 60 minutes.

  • Back Pain & Sciatica.
  • Strains & Sprains.
  • Tendonitis.
  • Entrapped Nerves.
  • Postural Problems.
  • Joint pain.

Soft Tissue Release

Soft Tissue Release (STR) combines several specific techniques that involve the application of passive pressure and movement to manage soft tissue injury, pain and dysfunction. It is a static procedure where the tissues are moved around the specific area of tissue rather than the pressure being moved passively through still tissue.

Stretching is applied by locking into an area of tightness whilst the muscle is taken to the end of its range. Tissues on either side of the locked-in pressure do not get disturbed at all.

STR is also applied to the neuromuscular system to allow the muscle to relax. The therapist applies pressure to create discomfort asking the client to relax into the pain, this overcomes the instinct to tense up allowing the entire muscle to lengthen rather than one specific area.

  • Effective for treating soft tissue.
  • Helps identify micro-trauma.
  • Improving joint range of movement.
  • Highly effective on tendons, ligaments and muscle.

Deep Tissue Massage

Deep Tissue Massage Therapies thoroughly relaxes the muscles and as a result isolates areas of tension. I recommend this treatment for anyone who suffers with stiffness and tightness in their neck, backs and shoulders.

Treatment sessions can last 60 minutes for specific areas or 90 minutes for multiple issues. This type of therapy realigns the deep layers of muscle and connective tissue relieving chronic muscle tension, which if left can cause injury and further pain.

Treatment can leave the client a little sore in areas where the body has held tension and I’ve had to work deeper. This is, however, considered a good pain with the discomfort subsiding within 48 hours.

Please note I will never work above your pain threshold.

  • Reducing chronic muscle spasm or pain caused by poor posture.
  • Releasing toxins that build up in your muscles.
  • Relaxation.
  • Inducing a good night’s sleep.

Kinesiology Taping

Kinesiology is different from other types of strapping tape which is wrapped tightly around an injured joint or muscle to support, but restricts movement.

It has unique elastic properties that allow support as well as allowing full range of motion. Rather than wrapped completely around an injury, the tape is applied directly over and/or around the periphery of the area. It can be worn for 4-5 days through intense exercise, showering, bathing or swimming and dries quickly.

When the tape is applied to the injury it gently lifts the skin, creating a space between the skin and underneath tissue. This creates an area of negative pressure allowing blood vessels and lymphatic vessels to open thus improving blood flow for healing and drainage of fluids that have collected due to injury. Over a 24/7 period this accelerates the healing process.

Brilliant for all stages of injury but particularly useful pre or post event for athletes with a niggle.

Takes approx 15 – 20 mins to apply.

  • Muscular and joint pain.
  • Inflammation.
  • Sprains/strains.
  • Overuse syndrome (carpel tunnel, shin splints).
  • Swelling/oedema.


Any aftercare following one of my Sports Massage Therapies will enhance the therapy I have performed for you. This will help reduce the number of follow-on treatments needed, and help prevent the identified problem returning. It is as important as the treatments you receive, so it is not unusual for me to give you some homework stretches and exercises. These will help realign your muscles to maximise the effect of the treatment session.

After care is offered mainly for remedial and prevention treatment, but as part of my commitment to providing you with the best service, general advice is always given at the end of any treatment.

  • Enhance the massage therapy.
  • Reduce the number of follow-on treatments needed.
  • Realign your muscles, maximising the effect of the treatment session.

ScarWork – Scar Tissue Massage Therapy

ScarWork massage techniques aim to relieve issues that have developed as a result of scar tissue formation.

Scar Tissue develops in the connective tissue known as the fascia and develops after any type of injury sustained by the body. This can occur daily through work or exercise, or develops after medical procedures like surgery.

Scar tissue can cause all types of issues, including: Lingering chronic nerve dysfunction (numbness, cold sensation, extra sensitivity to touch, odd sensations like electric, burning, wet); Reduced range of movement; Headaches; Back pain; Shoulder pain; Postural misalignment; Anxiety around trauma; Tightness around scar; Anxiety held around surgical procedure.

It is never too soon or too late to work on a scar. If the scar is not open, inflamed, weeping or red it can be worked on once stitches or staples are removed. Pains that arise elsewhere in the body can also be released.

Patients have reported improvements to be permanent providing a better quality of life experience.

  • Better range of movement
  • Improved look of scar
  • Reduction in pain or sensitivity
  • Increase of space following a C section, in preparation for another pregnancy
  • Reduction in pelvic and abdominal pain

Your First Visit – Massage Therapies

A complete consultation is performed on your first appointment. This comprises a medical history and a postural assessment. It may involve you standing for a short time in your gym shorts (and bra or sports bra for ladies), or laying on the couch whilst I take myoskeletal measurements. This is an important part of your treatment. I use this to detect problems you may not be aware of and to form the basis of all treatment and aftercare plans I develop for you.

pre-massage consultation

1. Consultation

postural assessment

2. Postural Assessment

massage treatments

3. Treatment

postural assessment

4. Aftercare Plan