Deep Tissue Massage for pain relief

Deep tissue massage for pain relief

deep tissue massage

The definition of deep tissue massage according is that it is a type of massage which reaches structures far beneath the superficial fascia to attempt to relieve chronic muscle problems or injuries.  To expand on this definition:  deep tissue is typically performed very slowly and the therapist may use fingers, knuckles or elbows.  It is normal to feel some pain during deep tissue massage. I always advise my clients that it should be a “good pain” and never reach above a 7 on a 0-10 pain scale.  You should be able to keep your muscles relaxed and breath through the pain to work with your massage therapist. This will help you release muscle tension, scar tissue, tight fascia, and bound muscle fibers.  If you are tensing against the pressure the massage becomes counter productive.

When you should choose deep tissue massage

  • When you have an injury that is past the acute phase and is no longer sensitive to touch. You may also want to get permission from your doctor before getting deep work on a recent injury.

  • When scar tissue and/or muscle tension is causing restriction of movement.

  • Chronic pain may be crying out for deeper work. Specifically if the affected area has an underlying deeper issue.

  • Other situations may be appropriate for deep tissue massage as well. If you think it  is right for you discuss your options with your massage therapist.

How will I feel after a deep tissue massage?

You might feel a little sore, tired or even kinda grouchy after a deep tissue massage. This is especially true if it has been a while since you got bodywork.  I had a client tell me once that she went home after a 90 minute deep tissue treatment and got into an honest and heated discussion with her husband about some things that had been bothering her.  I hope this doesn’t detour you. I tell you this because it is important to understand what is happening to our bodies.  Massage, in general, releases things…what those things are can be debatable. My personal belief is that the release happens on many levels.  Keep in mind that every person is different. Many people leave their deep tissue treatment feeling a profound sense of relaxation.

Here is a great idea:  go get a deep tissue massage (if you feel it is right for you) and report back in the comments on how you feel afterwords!  In the end some discomfort can be normal for the first couple of days and after that you should see improvement in the focus area of the treatment.


Have questions about whether deep tissue massage is right for you?  email us at or book online at

Thanks so much for reading:)