Everybody suffers from aches and pains now and again and for many these can become more troublesome during the cold winter months. Taking time to take care of your body can have multiple benefits for your overall health.
Eric Schiavi, a licensed massage therapist at The Center in Joliet said you should listen to your body.
“Consistency is prevention; if you have gotten relief from your pain through massage or bodywork, then you may consider that having regular massages may be helpful in preventing the buildup of stress and tension that leads to more acute pain,” he said.
Schiavi has been practicing some sort of bodywork since 1997.
“My own personal health had led me to this journey of holistic bodywork,” he said.
Schiavi had been pursuing a career in horticulture, but he was suffering from several health conditions that were then compounded by a severe car accident. All that and other more minor injuries inspired him to change his career path.
“I was ready at that point to get better," he said. "Luckily, for me, my mother had been practicing massage and bodywork for years and I had benefited greatly from the work she had been doing on me.
"I had come to a point where I wanted to increase my knowledge and commitment."
Originally started as The Wellness Center, by Anita Schiavi in 1988, The Center was the Joliet area’s first complementary massage practice. They are now located at 2531 Division Street #101 where they specialize in several styles of massage as well as a variety of other healing therapies, including reflexology, acupressure, and cranio-sacral therapy.
Benefits of Massage and Bodywork
“Bodywork can help make really quick improvements as far as pain, mobility, stiffness and sense of well being,” Schiavi said. “Stress from a physical model makes people feel tight, compartmentalized, disconnected and like there's a lot of effort in their physical body and mental function.
"Massage alleviates these restrictions and allows better internal communication in the body."
To get the most out of any bodywork that you do receive it is a good idea to communicate your needs to your therapist as well as recognizing that all of your parts are connected and work together.
“It’s a working partnership," Schiavi said. "When a client comes in and knows that they want to have their neck and shoulders worked on, I will definitely work where they want me to work, and then I will also show them how working on some other areas can produce an even greater effect because more of their body gets reeducated and relieved from tension and stress."
In addition to various forms of bodywork, there are many things that you can do on your own to alleviate bodily aches and pains.
“There are simple techniques such as self-massage of the temples while applying peppermint oil to help improve tension headaches," he said.
He added that contrast therapy, applying hot and cold alternately, to ease aches and pains in several areas of the body is effective.
Collectively, the staff of The Center has a wealth of experience in bodywork and how different modalities can be used together to bring maximum benefits to their clients creating a truly custom approach.
“We try to find out what types of therapy and which therapist will work best with each person; we can combine specific or general techniques and clients really enjoy the diversity that we offer,” Schiavi said.“People have finally come to the idea that massage isn’t just for making them feel better when they’re in a lot of pain, but it’s helping them to realize improvements above and beyond; it’s about maintaining a lifestyle and achieving what they want to achieve."