When it comes to relieving spa and massage practice client pain, you want to use something with a long track record of success. Arnica is one of those ingredients. It is produced from the blossoms of a flowering plant that is a member of the daisy family that grows in the mountains of Europe and North America.
There are several species of Arnica, but the one called Arnica Montana is most commonly used to produce the Arnica compound that usually is found in cream or gel form today. Arnica has been used for centuries as herbal medicine and homeopathic remedy to alleviate pain, stimulate the immune system, and increase circulation, to name just a few other healing properties.
The active ingredient of Arnica is sesquiterpene lactone helenalin, which has anti-inflammatory properties. Dr. Lyn Anderson, a naturopathic doctor, tells Fitness magazine, “The reason arnica works is that it, like many plants, has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. When arnica is applied, it stimulates circulation, helping the body's own healing system react—which encourages healing. So it assists the body in reducing swelling and relieving pain.”
Arnica is a key ingredient in one of our original BIOTONE products, the popular Dual-Purpose Massage Creme. You’ll also find Arnica in Controlled-Glide Massage Creme, developed specifically for instrument-assisted soft-tissue mobilization, fascia, and deep-tissue therapies; Muscle and Joint Relief Therapeutic Creme and Gel, which is great for sports massage and injuries; and Herbal Select Body Therapy Massage Oil.
Help clients prevent sports injuries with Arnica.
Heavily exercised muscles may lose their capacity to relax, resulting in chronic tightness and loss of flexibility. Learn how to help your clients heal and prevent minor injuries while improving blood circulation and muscle relaxation with these injury prevention massage techniques that use Controlled-Glide Massage Creme
1. While the client is lying on their stomach, knead from the Achilles tendon attachment on the ankle to the soleus attachment at the knee. Perform a push-pull back to the ankle. Repeat 3 times.
2. Rotate the ankle 3 times in both directions to bring the foot as far up and side to side as is comfortable to the client. Perform 3 crescent moons cross-fiber strokes to each side of the ankle.
3. Finish with a foot to knee massage. Repeat on the other side.
1. Straight client's leg into a locked position. Gently move the patella up, down, and side to side.
2. Perform 3 small circular friction movements along the side of the knee joint and patella (reduces and breaks down swelling in the knee). This also is good for massaging tendons around the knee.
3. Perform 3 cross fiber frictions to the patella tendon. Bend the knee to stretch the tendon; then apply cross-fiber friction massage with your thumbs slightly overlapping each other.
4. Finish with a hip to a foot massage. Repeat on the other side.
1. Bring the client’s leg into a half frog while lying on their stomach. Gently perform 3 effleurage strokes and the IT Band from Knee to hip, holding pressure for 3 seconds at the end of the movement.
2. Bring your hands to the inside of the knee, gently perform 3 circular motions. Straighten leg and perform 3-second holds at the “4 corners” of the hip followed by the hip to pelvis effleurage strokes.
3. Bring hip into a full frog to stretch.