What is the difference between a Deep Tissue & Swedish massage?

Deep Tissue massage vs Swedish massage

I have been practicing massage for almost two decades and the question regarding the difference between a deep tissue massage and a Swedish massage is one that I am asked frequently; almost on a daily basis, from new and even old clients. A Swedish massage is also referred to as a relaxation massage using light to medium strokes which helps increase circulation, whereas, a Deep Tissue massage focuses more on recovery, addressing the deeper layers of the muscles.

I used the term recovery not to indicate that a deep tissue massage isn’t right for someone who isn’t very active. In fact, I recommend it also to clients who work sedentary jobs. A majority of my clients work behind computers eight hours a day, and complain of tightness in the neck, upper back pain, low back pain, wrist pain, etc… the list goes on.

Which type of massage is right for you

It really depends on how much relief you want and how fast you want to it. One thing to remember is that massage isn’t magic, therefore, relief will vary from person to person. Your tolerance level for pressure and your lifestyle are good places to start to determine which is enjoyable for you. If you’re an athlete, yes absolutely, I recommend a deep tissue massage every week. Also if you spend most of your day behind a desk, then maybe every two weeks. However, if you don’t have the tolerance for deep pressure, a Swedish massage would be the right massage for you. Something else to also remember is that pressure isn’t set in stone; your therapist will adjust his or her pressure as needed to keep the session as enjoyable and relaxing as possible.


Lastly, get massage regularly, rather it be a deep tissue massage or a Swedish massage. For inquiries regarding massage, I am available via the comment box or email.


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