Massage therapy IS effective for musculoskeletal disorders

The next article in this month’s ABMP’s Massage and Bodywork researched the effectiveness of massage therapy for certain musculoskeletal disorders. Jerrilyn Cambron reported that researchers studied scientific literature databases. Massage was defined as “systematic manual manipulation of the soft tissues of the body with rhythmical pressure and stroking”.In the 26 studies of almost 3,000 people, the results demonstrated evidence for pain relief when the participants used only massage therapy for shoulder pain and osteoarthritis of the knee. They showed the same results for function improvement for participants w/ low back pain, osteoarthritis of the knee, and shoulder pain. In another review of six articles of soft tissue therapy (they defined it as “a mechanical form of therapy where soft-tissue structures are passively pressed, kneaded, or stretched, using physical contact with the hand or mechanical device”), they found that myofascial release therapy was beneficial for lateral epicondylitis! There were plenty of specifics I left out of this writeup, but the gist is that massage therapy can be (IS, in fact) beneficial for the musculoskeletal disorders talked about here, many others, and almost any other human body affliction!

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