Within the body lies a cellular love story that is brought together by touch and tranquility. The floating and balanced feeling that lasts throughout the day after a really great massage therapy treatment is largely in part of the activation of the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) and more specifically, the vagus nerve.
The vagus nerve pathway starts in the brain, passes behind the ear, through the throat, chest and into the gut. It stimulates and reports on important action like slowing heart rate, regulated breathing and digestion. While these functions are vital they can be hard to achieve as the vagus nerve asks for one key component: calm. When the vagus nerve is united with a sense of calm the whole body benefits from a deep state of healing. Uniting the vagus nerve with a soothing environment can be difficult if the nervous system is used to being frantic, or if a busy lifestyle takes precedence.
Enter the wonderful world of massage and meditation! A cozy table and soothing atmosphere alone can start the restorative work but include skin to skin contact and some well timed diaphragm breathing for the full effect. If your stomach has ever had a deep gurgle or you feel your mind has left the table during a treatment then the vagus nerve has been working its magic. The connection between a relaxation massage and the vagus nerve runs deep and could be another reason to book beyond muscle pain.