Before massaging the upper back with hot stones, it is important to test the temperature of the stone to void scorching the client's skin. Use hot stones to massage large muscles in the back with information from a certified massage therapist in this free video on massage techniques.
Hi, I'm Gretchen Rivas with Relax! Massage Therapy, and today we're going to talk about hot stone massage for the upper back. For this, you will need a pillowcase, hot stones and oil. Whenever you're working with hot stones, usually you want to have your stones heated to a temperature of about a 120 to 150 degrees. If they're too hot, you want to use a spoon or some tongs to pull them out. Oftentimes, they're a little bit too hot to touch, I'll dip them in some cool water to get them to the point where they're comfortable for me to handle; 'cause if they're, if they burn your hands, you're going to burn your client. So, you don't want to do that. You want to take your stones and I always put a little bit of oil on them, which I've already done with these and an oil on the back so that the stones glide smoothly and they don't stick to the client. One of the keys just having enough oil on that so that turn, flip and turn them as you're using them 'cause that way as they cool, the other side is a little bit more warm and you keep that motion going with the client and it feels nice and smooth and it stays warmer longer that way. So, when you're working on the upper back, you want to work around, you can use the stones to get in here around the scapula; you can work on top of it on the infraspinatus muscle. Be careful you don't push hard on those bony prominences there on the shoulder blade 'cause that could be very uncomfortable for the client. But, there's a muscle right on top of this shoulder blade called the infraspinatus that can really use a lot of work, oftentimes is often missed. Get in here on the trapezius muscle and work that area. You can come through here on the lats and relax all these area here and then work around through here, often feels really good and down each side of the spine on the erectors and again, over the shoulder blades. Be, again, be careful of the bony prominences, don't rub right on top of those 'cause that's uncomfortable. You can just really use that to get in here; you know, you can use the edge of your stone to get in along that scapula. People usually have a lot of tension and chronic stuff through here. So, you want to get in there a little bit deeper and work that whole area. And always when you're finish, do a nice gliding stroke to finish up. And that's how you do hot stone massage on the upper back.