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Petrissage: A Tension-Relieving Technique

Swedish massage's five basic movements yield a bounty of benefits. Find out more about the massage's kneading technique, petrissage, with Groupon?s introduction.

Kneading, rolling, and squeezing?this, in a few words, is petrissage, a type of Swedish massage technique that focuses on compression and release. Working in combination with Swedish massage's five other movements, these deep-reaching motions are designed to lift soft tissue away from its underlying structures, effectively stretching muscles and other soft tissues and promoting circulation so all your blood doesn?t pile up in your elbows. Specific maneuvers include kneading with the whole hand, using the thumbs to apply pressure to thinner tissue, and rolling skin between the fingers to prevent it from adhering to the fascia (that is, sheets of connective tissue) below and causing stiffness. Massage oil or cream is often used to help these strokes glide smoothly and avoid pinching the skin. Petrissage, like Swedish massage in general, often results in increased muscle mobility, improved peristaltic, or bowel, movement when performed on the abdomen and, of course, a sense of noodly relaxation.

4409 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia,
PA
US

1226 North 52nd Street
Philadelphia,
PA
US

Jan N. Widerman, MaxAesthetics' medical director and a 28-year board-certified physician, leads a team of licensed aestheticians and laser technicians as they give youth a curtain call with a full spectrum of medical-based skin and beauty treatments. Dr. Widerman utilizes his certification in injectables such as Botox and Juv?derm to tackle evidence of aging, and laser technicians wield Soprano XL and Pixel laser technology to retexturize skin. Nourishing facials, microdermabrasions, and body peels feature Rhonda Allison's plant-based palette of enzymes, toners, and exfoliants. Rounding out the center's complete devotion to beauty cultivation, a board-certified permanent-makeup technician stands by to refurnish clients' most visible traits.

2401 Pennsylvania Ave
Philadelphia,
PA
US

Each staff member at Natural Wellness and Spa has personally experienced the benefits of massage, and seeks to demonstrate its soothing powers through diverse bodywork therapies and classes. Practitioners thoroughly investigate each patient's concerns before employing a particular, specialized approach, such as deep-tissue, trigger-point, or Swedish massage. Students get hands-on practice in self-massage and aromatherapy during 90-minute classes, which prove easier than learning massage techniques through trial and error in a physics lab.

317 S 56th St
Philadelphia,
PA
US

Brands Used: Influence, CHI color, Jane Carter, DermaOrganic

Reservations/Appointments: Optional

Established: 1994

Staff Size: 2?10 people

Parking: Free street parking

Handicap Accessible: Yes

Q&A with Rachelle Russell, President

When and how did you first develop a passion for your work?

I first developed a passion for the beauty industry while working at my aunt's salon in 1983. I loved meeting new clients, and seeing their faces after I finished doing their hair. As a woman, getting your hair done can boost your ego, elevate your mood, and make you feel like a brand-new person. All that being said, I just love people, and I love making them feel like a million bucks.

5823 Market St.
Philadelphia,
PA
US

Danielle English, the licensed massage therapist at Awakening Touch, works from a background in therapeutic massage and physical therapy, both of which she learned while working at a rehab and chiropractic center. Danielle prides herself on her ability to administer bodywork that addresses physical injury as well as emotional duress. In that vein, she's devised her own unique form of massage that incorporates many different styles. In addition to standard Swedish and deep-tissue modalities, she also offers exotic forms like Lomi Lomi and feather touch massage. Thanks to a class on small animal massage, Danielle welcomes pets into her studio for treatments that can help them overcome pain or the existential stress of trying to catch a tail that's forever just out of reach.

2111 Green Street
Philadelphia,
PA
US