Stress can make you do things you'll regret, like snapping at someone you love or telling them you wish they weren't your eye doctor. Unwind with this Groupon.
$39 for a 60-Minute Swedish Massage ($80 Value)
A licensed massage therapist soothes muscles with a classic Swedish massage, whose gentle pressure makes it a popular method for treating pain and stress.
Southern Style Spa, 3499281
Though Swedish massages are popular throughout the world, their process is generally uniform. Read our guide—rather than Norse sagas—to learn what to expect.
Swedish Massage: Four Steps to Relaxation
Most Europeans refer to Swedish massage as classic massage, possibly because the technique did not originate in Sweden. In fact, the individual elements of the style can be traced to all parts of the world, but it was a Dutch practitioner who established the system that combines four distinct motions—whose names, as it happens, are mostly French: effleurage, petrissage, friction, and tapotement. Together, the motions help relieve muscle tension and stimulate blood flow, thereby energizing the body and soothing the mind during a single relaxing session.
The four phases are easy to distinguish. Effleurage refers to the smooth, gliding strokes that help relax soft tissues at the beginning of the treatment, followed by the squeezing, rolling, or kneading gestures of petrissage. Deep, circular motions make up the friction phase, in which layers of tissue rub against one another to boost circulation. Therapists conclude the massage with tapotement, a rapid cadence of percussive taps performed with cupped hands, fingers, or the edge of the hand.