The History of Massage

The origins of massage die in the obscurity of history. You cannot know with certainty when people start to appreciate the healing power of touch, but I think is just a small mistake to assume that a procedure is as old as humanity, and even older. Just look at the behaviour of animals caring for their young, for the concern with which the cat licks the kittens, sheep or a newborn lamb – this action that is not only a caress, but also e.g. stimulates circulation and helps digestion. Massage the bruises, aching, potency of suffering through touch is behaviour that comes naturally to us.

The first written mention of massage comes from the Far East: ancient China books and description of the procedure appears in the works of Kung-Fu from the Tao of TSEs and Classic Internal Medicine of the Yellow Emperor. Also in India were the texts about the art of life and maintaining health contain the information about the massage. It was not treated as a separate medicinal treatment, but as part of a comprehensive therapy applied to the patient’s body and spirit.

The effectiveness of massage therapy recognized Hippocrates, advising its application in many diseases. This treatment was often used by Greek athletes, who used to rub an olive oil in their body, which ensure not only relaxation and relax muscles, but also a healthy look and good condition of the skin.

Ancient Rome, taking liberally from the Greek heritage, took over, massage is also used for medicinal purposes as well as relaxing. In Roman baths, it was one of the most popular treatments and the rich patricians had slaves trained specifically for massage therapists. The benefits of massage used by Julius Caesar, also suffering from sciatica.

In medieval Europe as a medicinal treatment massage fell into oblivion. Knowledge of it is preserved in the world of Islam, especially by Avicenna, who believed that it has considerable importance in removing the unnecessary metabolism products.

In modern times the beneficial properties of massage have been discovered in the Renaissance era, thanks to the French Dr. Ambrose. Considered one of the fathers of modern surgery, he has made many ground breaking discoveries and observations, which allowed, among other things, to a significant reduction in mortality during the amputation. Less known, but equally important is making his return to the salons. A few on the basis of his observations concluded that massage can make a big difference, and shared this discovery with other doctors. After his death, with this method, though not forgotten, but not won much popularity in fighting medical diseases was in arms, after which implementation rather rarely. Difficult situation has changed in the 19th century, when a group of Scandinavian doctors gathered around the Royal Central Institute of Gymnastics with Per Henrik Ling again discovered this method and circulated it by using for the treatment of joints problems and surgical clinics ENT operations are possible.

After World War II, the massage again for a short while was forgotten. But with the increasing popularity of so-called ‘unconventional medicine’, massage again returns to the graces. Rightly so, because there is no healing method so pleasant and effective at the same time as a massage.


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