Massage Therapy for Younger People

Youth sports Massage TherapyThe majority of my clients understand Massage Therapy to be a necessary  part of their health and wellness plans. Thankfully, those that use to view Massage as just a luxury are learning how helpful it can be. What I’ve been thrilled to witness in the past couple of years are the number of parents booking their teens and pre-teens in for Massage sessions with me.

My own son was 10 when I started studying Massage Therapy and as a growing teen, student and hockey player, he received regular Massage sessions to keep his muscles flexible and fit. Growing pains and muscle spasms were resolved naturally. He was also introduced to a healthy way to relax and rejuvenate during exam time, hockey tournaments and the other stressors of growing.

Massage Therapy for Students with Teresa Graham, RMT CalgarySports, technology and studying place the same stress on kid’s muscles as they do on adults. Posture suffers from bending over textbooks and computers in the same way it does when sitting at a desk job throughout the day. Neck, shoulder and upper back muscles become tight and tense, which can lead to pain and headaches, regardless of age.

Many clients say they feel taller and stand straighter after their Massage. The head pulled forward and chin tucked over a phone, turns into shoulders and head back and in alignment, with the loosening of muscles. It creates better awareness of just how good proper posture can feel.

With the stress of school grades, bullying, peer pressure, sports tournaments… kids need to learn ways to relax and de-stress that are natural and healthy. What they learn through their teens as coping mechanisms will carry them through the adult years in the work force. It sets them up to succeed.

While they may squirm at first because they are not familiar with the touch of Massage, young people soon become relaxed, calm and often fall asleep during their sessions. While easing muscle tension, massage also balances the hormones that are often raging during these years, boosts the immune system naturally, and encourages positive body awareness.

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For the first session I often encourage parents to book young people in for 30 minutes rather than a longer session. It allows them to become familiar with how Massage Therapy feels, provides them a safe space to give feedback as to where they are sore or how much pressure they prefer with Massage. An adult is also always welcome to stay in the Massage room if that is what is more comfortable for a young person. Providing a space that feels safe is essential.
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Massage Therapy & Holistic Sessions in Varsity in Calgary

The signage has gone up in the window and the space is all set up for you!
Clients are really enjoying this comfortable and welcoming space. Come by and see us!

Ouch My Neck! Why it Hurts & What You Can Do About It.

The Neck. Neck pain is one of the most common Massage Therapy complaints that clients come in to see me for. It’s such an amazing, flexible part of the body but when it hurts…OUCH!

Massage Therapy for the Neck at Teresa Graham RMT in Calgary ABFree movement of the neck when muscles are loose

Tight neck muscles can lead to pain, tension, headaches, jaw pain, pain in the shoulders, upper back and even the upper chest. There are 26 muscles in the neck that help to stabilize the upper body, allow us to look up and down and from side to side, let us bend our ear towards our shoulder, allow us to swallow and talk, and help to elevate our rib cage when we breathe.

It’s important to keep these muscles flexible so you can enjoy their full function and mobility!


Technology and Neck Pain

Massage for tight neck muscles at Teresa Graham, RMT CalgaryTaking a break from devices can help to rest your neck muscles

While the technology we have is amazing, it is probably the worst culprit and what brings Massage Therapy clients in to see me the most.

​Straining or holding our neck muscles as we look at computer screens for work throughout the day, or tilting the head down to look at phones and other devices, puts undue stress on our neck muscles unless we take time to care for them. If you’re regularly taking breaks from computer screens and your devices throughout your day as well as taking time to counter stretch the neck muscles, you may not be having issues. Unfortunately we can get drawn into the job or the conversation and forget to take those breaks.


This Neck Pain, I Just Woke Up With It

Massage Therapy for painful muscle spasms in Calgary NW with Teresa Graham, RMTPainful Muscle Spasm in the morning can be helped

No reason that you can think of as a cause, but when you woke up this morning you experienced severe neck pain. It hurts to move it, it hurts to not move it, your head feels too heavy to hold up… Has this happened to you?

Another reason I see clients for a Neck Massage is because of Torticollis (or Wry Neck), a spasm in the neck muscle. It’s likely that your neck has been tense and strained for some time but you may not have been paying attention. While you were sleeping you unknowingly moved into a position where the strain became an intense muscle spasm and because the muscle was already strained and fatigued, it’s now yelling at you. Torticollis can be very painful.


How Can I Help Your Neck Pain?

Massage Therapy in Calgary NW with Teresa Graham, RMTMassage helps to release tight neck muscles

Massage Therapy

Massage Therapy can help to loosen all of the muscles of the neck, shoulders, upper back and upper chest. Clients often feel some immediate pain relief and notice increased flexibility and mobility.

Myofascial Release

A form of Massage Therapy, Myofascial Release focuses on encouraging the fascia around the muscles to loosen and release. Through rolling the muscles with the fingers, and gradually massaging in more deeply. The tightness begins to let go. Not usually recommended when the muscle spasm is acute, as it often feels too aggressive and painful.

Craniosacral Therapy

Gentler than Massage, Craniosacral Therapy will encourage the fascia that surrounds the muscles, ligaments and joints to gradually begin unwinding. As the fascia loosens the muscles have more room to move.

Spinal Touch

Through specific techniques Spinal Touch encourages good posture throughout the entire body to promote good spinal alignment. (read more about Spinal Touch here)

Hot Moist Heat

Muscles just love hot moist heat. It brings circulation to the area and can often encourage the muscles to relax. Getting into a hot bath to soak your neck and back muscles is the best way to apply this form of therapy. You can also place a damp hand towel in the microwave to heat up and place on the affected areas.


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It’s important to remember that your neck muscles have probably been under strain for a period of time and they are unlikely to completely loosen with just one treatment.

Let’s work together to get them loose through regular therapy, some home self-care and stretches. 
Once loose we can create a plan to keep them that way!

Inhale, Exhale ~ Just Breathe

deepbreath
Do you ever find yourself holding your breath, without really realizing it? Perhaps I notice it more for myself because I am often reminding clients to “take a breath” while they are on the table.

With so many benefits, why wouldn’t you take a deep breath?

Deep breathing:

  • calms the mind and the nervous system bringing increased relaxation
  • increases your oxygen intake and that’s good for the entire body
  • exercises the intercostal muscles (muscles between the ribs) and diaphragm
  • calms anxiety and stress
  • improves cellular regeneration
  • strengthens the blood and the release of toxins
  • ​improves digestion

There are many breathing techniques that you can experiment with, here is one…breathe
How and when we breathe has a direct impact on both our body and our mind so make yourself a note to “JUST BREATHE”!

How I Change It Up ~ Summer to Autumn Selfcare

Helping Body, Mind and Spirit transition selfcare through the seasons  takes some thought and planning, but you can make it easier.

Autumn Selfcare Massage with Teresa Graham RMT in Calgary

Where I currently live Autumn comes roaring in with sudden colder temperatures and often some snow. Yet this season is still a favourite with the gorgeous colours of reds, oranges and yellows, and the crisp, fresh scents that permeate the air. My self-care routines do shift quite a lot for the Fall though, as I find myself spiraling inwards in both body and mind. 

Falling into Self-Care Activities

Self Care Activity for AutumnOutdoors is my go-to through most of the year if I’m not at work. While I still get out as much as I can the  chilling winds drive me indoors for many Autumn days.  That’s when hiking and nature walks shift to Belly Dance. The music goes on, the hip scarves come out and I shimmy all over the house. It lifts my mood as much as a hike does.  The yoga mat moves from the grass to the carpet and I stretch in and out of myself after a good dance workout.

This isn’t to say that I don’t go outside. I consciously switch up my daily routines to experience as much exposure to daylight as I possibly can. The light on the forehead stimulates the pituitary gland which is important for increasing serotonin (mood stabilizer) production. That’s to say nothing of the benefits from sunshine doses of Vitamin D and also, just how good it feels to be out in the fresh air.

But I do admit that the biting cold wind drives me indoors as the season progresses.

Self Massaging Autumns Dryness Away

Massage is good for moisturizing Autumn dried skin with Teresa Graham, RMT Calgary

This year the dry weather seems to have arrived a little earlier and my skin regime has already needed to change. Increased dry brushing to get rid of dead skin cells and LOTS of moisturizing. I make moisturizing a self-massage ritual. Usually coconut oil, blended with favourite essential oils and massaged into muscles, joints and skin. This increased and focused touch is a great way to improve body awareness plus skin that just feels good to live in.

For my scalp and hair I use warmed coconut or sesame oil to nourish and nurture. Wrapped up in a towel for a few hours my upper being absorbs all the goodness.

Lots and lots of Massage Therapy

Teresa Graham RMT in Calgary
Fall and winter are busy times for Massage Therapists and the need for my own muscle maintenance increases as my work load does. There are other reasons that I go more often for these essential, healthy sessions. With more clients coming in I ensure I am doing all that I can to keep my Immune system strong and healthy, and Massage Therapy helps with that. It also encourages me to relax and de-stress so that my sleep improves…all great immune boosting stuff!

With the shift in my activities I use my muscles in different ways and so those shimmying hips and dance leg muscles require some extra attention in staying loose and flexible.


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Seasonal Eating Selfcare

Take care of you, naturally.Do you also prefer warm foods in your tummy when the weather is colder outside? There is nothing quiet like a steaming bowl of soup to warm you from the inside out. Or starting the day with a bowl of oatmeal and warmed fruit.

Preferring to buy local and fresh my self care nourishment includes lots of squash, kale, beets, carrots, apples and pears blended into stews, soups, oatmeal and other deliciousness. The addition of warming spices such as cinnamon, clove, curry, nutmeg speak to my soul this time of year.

Cozying up to Self Care

Cozy times for Autumn self careMy cat is the main instigator of this self care change. As the weather becomes colder she loves to cuddle up and I have to admit that the rhythm of her purr is comforting and somewhat meditative. So in preparation some extra blankets are on the couch, scented candles and incense are nearby, along with some good books and spicy herbal teas. 

Cozy times also include more bath time than during the summer. There is nothing quite like allowing that hot and healing moist heat to fully embrace my skin, muscles and bones. Comforting scents of essential oils and herbal tea round out this sanctuary for me.

While  my garden is hibernating my creative interests also move indoors and kitty often likes to sit and watch as I craft, sew, make candles,lotions, etc. and she purrs in approval of quieter times.

How do your self care rituals change through the seasons?

When you have to stay indoors rather than be outside, what do you do for self care?

Autumn Massage Sessions ~ The Healthy Benefits

The colder weather is definitely upon us and the season has quickly changed from Summer to Fall. Did you know that Massage Therapy can help you to easily transition between the seasons? There are so many benefits to receiving an Autumn Massage, here are just a few…

Massage Therapy Helps Relieve Anxiety, Depression and SAD

Massage Therapy with Teresa Graham RMT for Anxiety, Depression, SAD in Calgary

Ease Anxiety, Depression and SAD with regular Massage sessions

​Back to school, sports, indoor activities, the ‘9 to 5’, family holiday gatherings… all of these happenings are good, but they can leave you feeling overwhelmed and fatigued. Decreasing amounts of sunshine and daylight begin to take a toll on your mind and your spirit. Anxiety and Depression increase and can lead to exhaustion.

Massage Therapy helps to naturally balance your hormones. Lowering the release of cortisol (the stress hormone) while increasing serotonin (a mood stabilizer) and dopamine levels (helps to battle depression and increases clarity and focus).

Your Massage Therapy appointment gives your mind and body a “time out”. This is a great opportunity to rejuvenate and re-energize so that you can keep your life on track

Massage Therapy is a Natural Immune System Booster

This time of year we spend more time indoors and often in the close company of others, an optimal scenario for the spread of viruses. Preventative action can help you to stay healthy.

​Massage Therapy helps to boost your body’s white blood cell activity, which strengthens your immune system. It also helps you to sleep better, which always goes hand to hand with staying healthier.

Get a Better Nights Sleep with Massage

Massage Therapy brings better sleep with Teresa Graham RMT in Calgary

Sleep better after your Massage Therapy session

A good nights sleep leads to better health, eases depression and is a time for your body to kick into it’s innate self-healing mode. Massage Therapy helps to boost serotonin and melatonin production which are key hormones for regulating your sleep cycle.

Massage as a Stress Buster

Massage Therapy for Stress with Teresa Graham RMT in Calgary

Ease Stress with Massage

When stressed our heart rate and blood pressure increase and muscles become tense and tight. Massage Therapy will help to release your shoulders from your ears, lower your heart rate and decrease blood pressure. In a more relaxed state your stress becomes more manageable.

Reduce Pain and Inflammation with Massage Therapy

Massage Therapy for Arthritis in NW Calgary with Teresa Graham RMT

Good for Arthritis, Massage Therapy eases joint and muscle pain

Colder weather often brings an increase in muscle and joint pain, especially for those who deal with arthritis. Back to school/study/computer posture places more stress and tension on the muscles of the neck, back and shoulders which can lead to increased headaches, jaw tightness and muscle pain.

A Massage Therapy session increases blood flow to muscles, joints and connective tissues while helping to ease inflammation. Greater blood flow and reduced muscle tension eases stress on joints so that they are able to move more freely and with reduced pain. Massage helps to loosen the strained muscles that can become tense with studying as well as increased computer and desk time. Through releasing muscle tension the body moves into it’s better, more natural posture resulting in fewer headaches, joint pains and neck strain.

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Optimal October Wellness Mini Sessions

You may already know which therapy is your go to for your optimal well-being, but have you tried others? Here is your opportunity!

Holistic therapies with Teresa Graham, RMT Calgary ABHolistic therapies with Teresa Graham, RMT

This month Teresa will be offering mini sessions in some of the holistic therapies she shares (some, because not all services fit into a shorter time period).

~ You can add a mini session to a longer appointment that you have booked, or book just a mini session, or book up to 2 mini sessions back to back in a day.

~ You can only book a mini session for a specific therapy once during the month. Your sessions must be booked and received between October 1 and 31, 2019.

~ Mini -sessions are 25 minutes long and cost $45 (plus gst). Sorry, gift certificates can not be purchased towards or used to pay for monthly sessions.

​Choose from:


Reflexology for your hands or feet.

Calgary Reflexology sessions with Teresa Graham at Hand to Health

Reflexology sessions for the Hands in Calgary with Teresa Graham at handtohealth.com

Indian Head Massage
​(without oil)

Calgary Ayurvedic Sessions with Teresa Graham in Calgary, AB at Hand to Health

Reiki – a short introduction

Calgary Reiki Treatments with Teresa Graham, Reiki Master in Calgary AB

Relaxation Massage
​(one area only)

Relaxation Massage in Calgary with Teresa Graham, RMT at Hand to Health

By Email: handtohealth@gmail.com
​By Phone: (403) 620-0561