What is a hot stone massage?

By: Dr. Edward Shin, BSc, BEd, DC, Feb 07, 2018
  Article
Wellness, Kiromedica, Hot Stone Massage

What are the benefits of a hot stone massage?

Hot stone massage is a variation of classic massage therapy. Heated smooth, flat stones are placed on key points on the body. The massage therapist may also hold the stones and use them to massage certain areas.

Description of the Stones

The hot stones are usually made of basalt, a type of rock that is rich in iron, so they retain heat. River rocks are normally used because they are smoothed over time by the river current. The stones are immersed in water and heated in an electric heater until they are within a certain temperature range. The placement of the stones is usually at specific points on the back, in the palms of the hand, or between the toes but may vary depending on the client's condition.  The heat of the stones warm and relax the muscles, which allows the therapist to apply deeper pressure if desired.

Benefits of Hot Stone Massage

A common question people have is whether to get hot stone massage vs Swedish massage or a regular massage. Some people find the warmth of the hot stones to be comforting and get this type of massage for relaxation.  It's also suited for people who have muscle tension but prefer a lighter massage. The heat relaxes muscles, allowing the therapist to work the muscles without using deep pressure.

People also get a hot stone massage for a variety of health conditions:     

• Back pain and aches • Poor circulation • Arthritis • Osteoarthritis 

• Depression • Stress, anxiety and tension • Insomnia

Dr. Shin graduated from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College in 2008 with a 4-year Doctor of Chiropractic degree. He earned his Bachelor of Science with Honours in the Life Sciences and Bachelor of Education degree from Queen’s University in 2002 and 2003. He is currently in private practice at KIROMEDICA Health Centre a multidisciplinary clinic located in Toronto. Dr. Shin has been in private practice in the Toronto area since graduation and makes this his home.

His area of specialty focuses on spinal health along with physical medicine & rehabilitation.