Body brushing is practiced as an opening and closing holistic ritual in massage and bodywork appointments. Massage therapists can additionally provide body brushing any time they feel it is needed, which includes prior to turning the client over on the table from pronated to supine position, or supine to prone position.
Bodybrushing is usually practiced over the client's draping on a massage table, or over the client's clothes on a professional massage chair.
Body brushing usually entails the massage therapist starting up near the posterior neck line and brushing outside on the client's lateral body, inferiorly towards their feet. On a massage table:
- in supine position, the practitioner would start around the client's manubrium and brush laterally to the client's shoulders, then inferiorly towards the client's feet and off the table.
- in pronated position, the practitioner would start inferior to the client's spine of their scapula, and brush laterally to the client's shoulders, then inferiorly towards the client's feet and off the table.
In a massage chair, an LMT would brush the back of the body, with bilateral hands on both sides of the spine, brushing from around the client's spine of their scapula inferiorly towards their lower hips and off the chair.
Body brushing is a method used to connect the entire body for a holistic sense or feeling. It connects almost the entire body. Think about when you provide a massage. You might end your massage with the feet, or the client's back. Leaving the client after working on a specific region may not feel like a holistic treatment to the client. Providing body brushing strokes at the end of a massage session can allow the customer to feel like the therapist has addressed and connected their entire body.
Some practitioners who are sensitive to energy medicine may also feel that negative energy could emerge from the tissues during bodywork. Body brushing could also remove these negative energies or spirits from the body, when it is applied with that mental intention. To provide energetical body brushing, simply brush the body as explained in the instructor video demonstration, and allow the hands to continue moving the energy out a door or window of your treatment area, once your hands have left the client's body.
Here's a demo and explanation of body brushing techniques that can be used in both massage and bodywork, in the supine or prone positions:
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