Blood circulation plays a pivotal role in your overall health. Without sufficient circulation, your body will not receive the right amount of oxygen critical to everyday function. That’s why it’s essential to practice certain habits guaranteed to improve your blood flow and energize you throughout the day.
Massage is one of the techniques to better blood circulation. Self massage, in particular has become increasingly popular, and for good reasons.
Below we explore the various ways you can provide self-care through self massage as well as a few things you need to keep in mind.
Safety of Self Massage
Many self massage techniques are safe and effective. However, it doesn’t take away the risks that come with ill-informed and inexperienced executions. For one, self massage can cause serious injury if you’re not too careful. Whether it’s the angle, the depth of pressure or the massage tool used, self massage can lead to short-term and long-term injuries.
Self massage is safe when done reasonably well. You need to inform yourself of the basic do’s and don’ts and consider consulting a professional before attempting any of the techniques. Moreover, being in tune with your inner sensations and interconnected tensions can prevent serious consequences.
Self Massage Techniques
Here are a few simple yet highly effective self massage techniques we recommend you try.
Shoulder and neck relief
- Reach across your chest with your right hand while resting your palm on top of your left shoulder
- Press the knuckle of your thumb against the neck muscle
- Gently rotate your head and neck while pressing neck muscles against the thumb knuckle
- With your hand in the same place, gently apply pressure into your back muscle (located between your shoulder blade and spine) using your fingertips and rotate your left shoulder blade
- Repeat the process on your right shoulder
- Use a regular tennis ball or a spiked one
- Step on the ball with your foot while rolling back and forth from heel to toe. If you’re ticklish, wearing socks may be helpful
- Don’t attempt to flatten the ball. Otherwise, too much pressure will do more harm than good
- Roll your foot in small circles if you want to work out particularly painful knots
- Draw circles with your fingertips at your temples
- Increase the pressure and size of your circles gently as you move closer to your scalp
Natural Ways to Improve Blood Circulation
Beyond massages, there are other ways to increase blood circulation. Something as simple as elevating your legs can instantly boost your blood flow. Stretching for 3-5 minutes can also do wonders to your muscles, especially if you sit at a desk all day. Furthermore, committing to at least 20 minutes of exercise everyday ensures a much better blood flow to empower your body.
It’s also important to eat the right food. Otherwise, you will end up clogging your arteries, which can lead to grave health problems. Eat lean proteins, whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables as well as healthy fats (nuts, seeds, avocado, fish oil). Eating spicy foods also increase your body temperature, which in turn improve your blood circulation significantly.