We are a huge fan of self-care when traveling: mind, body, spirit. And after all those plane rides, backpacks, and explorations urban and jungle alike, the physical body can't help but take a hit. We tapped in to massage therapist Autumn Elias - an avid traveler herself - for why she sees massage as an integral part of any vacation.
First, why massage?
Have you ever received a massage that was so good you left the session floating on a cloud? Not only does massage encourage a euphoric and magical experience, it provides the system with much-needed health benefits that can translate into every part of your life. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, scientific data has shown that frequent massage can reduce anxiety, improve circulation, regulate quality of life and even alleviate back pain. Now couple these benefits with enjoying a new and beautiful destination and you have yourself an ideal vacation experience! Forget all of the nerdy, scientific data behind why a massage can be beneficial -- it just feels good!
What kind of massage should I get?
Vacation massage experiences are a great opportunity to try new techniques and massage modalities that perhaps you wouldn't explore at home like Thai massage in SE Asia, Aryuvedic massage in Nepal and India, or massage paired with a hamman spa experience in Morocco. Destination massage experiences often times combine the popular modalities, techniques, tools and scents of the area. While you may have your 'go to' massage therapist at home, you can utilize these opportunities to explore the massage world. Any kind of bodywork is better than no bodywork (well, almost). and you may just find a new type of massage relaxing and downright enjoyable. It provides the excitement of trying something different in a new place, and you can come back home with new preferences.
How can I keep it up when I get home?
It's inevitable. The return home will have to happen but you can make that transition back into 'regular' life much easier by pre-booking your massage with your 'go-to' therapist. Don't forget to share your new massage finds and experiences with your practitioner- your therapist may even be able to replicate certain massage techniques and requests! After you've unpacked your clothes and recovered from that unfortunate sunburn, consider booking yourself a massage to extend that peaceful feeling you enjoyed while you were away. Find the inner peace you experienced on vacation and use that energy to launch back into your career, family life, or other responsibilities.
Learn more about Autumn and her Austin-based practice Vita Wellness.