What is a Swedish Massage?
Health and Wellness

What Is a Swedish Massage and Its Benefits?

Sep 01, 2022

Getting a massage should be a relaxing experience as well as a way to look after both your physical and mental health. Much more than a simple self-indulgence, massage is a tool that works for recovery and improving your overall well-being. There are many different types of massage to choose from, each with its own focus and effects. One of the most popular types of massage is a Swedish massage. What is it, though? And what makes it so special?

Today, we’re answering the question, “what is a Swedish massage?” to help you learn all about this popular massage technique as well as how it could benefit you. Read on, and see why you need one!

What Is a Swedish Massage?

While you might’ve heard the term before, what is a Swedish massage? Sorry to disappoint, but it doesn’t come with a side of meatballs! Swedish massage is a classic therapeutic massage that manipulates muscles for relaxation and recovery.

Originating in Sweden during the 1830s, Swedish massage is a popular type of massage that allows you to feel relaxed but also aims to boost energy levels and improve your overall health. It achieves this through a variety of movements intended to manipulate the muscles in your body.

Swedish Massage Movements

Now that you’ve gotten an answer to the question, what is a Swedish massage?” let’s take a look at Swedish massage movements and how they work the body. The main movements of Swedish massage are:

  • Effleurage
  • Petrissage
  • Tapotement
  • Friction
  • Vibration


Effleurage is a movement used at the beginning and end of Swedish massage to warm up muscles and then soothe them. The movement involves gentle circular or gliding strokes at various levels of pressure to work out any knots you may have.


Petrissage is the deep, kneading movement during Swedish massage. This is meant to manually compress your soft tissues and typically includes movements like kneading, wringing, rolling, and lifting. Petrissage stretches and loosens muscles while stimulating blood flow throughout the body.


Tapotement means tapping or drumming, and consists of movements like hammering, slapping, cupping, hacking, and tapping to stimulate blood flow and relax the body. It’s also the Swedish massage movement that helps promote lymphatic drainage to boost your overall health and wellness.


As you may have guessed, friction is the rubbing motion of Swedish massage. Whether you’re at a massage therapist or using a luxury massage chair from the comfort of home, pressure may be applied in a circular or linear rhythm. This technique of Swedish massage softens and realigns muscles while promoting healthy joints.


The vibration movement of Swedish massage is the shaking of the massage area to loosen up the body and help you relax. It’s great for relaxing nerves in areas with large scars or knots. Depending on your level of sensitivity, this will vary in intensity.

Benefits of Swedish Massage

Now that you’ve learned what a Swedish massage is and the common movements it uses, what are some of its benefits? Whether you are still making routine appointments with a massage therapist or you've opted to enjoy the multitude of benefits of massage therapy at home with a full body massage chair, experiencing massages regularly can have a profound positive impact on your overall health and wellness.

Some of the benefits of Swedish massage include:

  • Pain management
  • Deep relaxation
  • Better blood circulation
  • Increased energy levels
  • Better flexibility and mobility
  • Improved mood
  • Stronger immune system

Each of these benefits work together to boost your mental and physical well-being. For example, better blood circulation can help fight inflammation, lower blood pressure, and improve heart health naturally. Better energy levels go hand-in-hand with an elevated mood that has you ready to take on each day! Meanwhile, improved flexibility from Swedish massage may help reduce swelling, help with recovery from sports injuries, and increase range of motion.

Of all these benefits of Swedish massage, however, the most sought-after are likely pain management and deep relaxation. As your muscles relax against the movements of your massage chair program or massage therapist, pain may subside, as well. The release of endorphins associated with Swedish massage work to alleviate pain naturally, leaving you feeling relaxed and better than before! This combination of the benefits of Swedish massage sessions can help center your mind and heal your body more efficiently.

Now that we’ve answered the question, “what is a Swedish massage?” and you’ve learned about its potential benefits, it’s time to experience it for yourself! Getting a massage on a regular basis is important to maximize its effectiveness. To achieve this, many have turned to today’s full body massage chairs. Advancements in technology have effectively removed any differences between using a massage chair vs human massage, making it easier than ever to enjoy a Swedish massage from the comfort of home.

Ready to explore the benefits of owning a massage chair, yourself? Check out the Ogawa Refresh L Massage Chair to refresh your body and mind at the touch of a button whenever you want.
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