Different Types of Massage Therapy

Massage is a fantastic way to relieve stress, treat injuries or just plain old relax. You may be asking yourself though, there are so many different types of massage, which one is best for me?

We’ve created a bit of a quick guide for those of you who don’t know.

Relaxation Massage

This massage is all about relaxation, normally with a soft pressure. A great way to describe it is as a pain-free, pampering massage.”

Good for: People who want to treat themselves, or a loved one. Or even if you are new to massage and want a soft introduction.

Deep tissue

As the name suggests, deep tissue massage targets deeper layers of the muscle. It’s really relaxing but is much more firm.
Good for: Someone who is looking for something similar to a relaxation massage, but more if you wants a massage that targets the deeper layer of muscle.


This massage is often confused with the deep tissue, but in fact, they are very different. Remedial massage is for people with injuries, sore shoulders or muscles that need to be worked on for healing.

Common reasons to get a remedial massage would be: lower back pain, a persisting head ache or shoulder pain.

It is important to see therapists performing remedial massages have a diploma or degree rather than a certificate so you can be sure they are qualified to work on healing your body.  A qualified remedial massage therapist will know what they are working on and can help realign the fibres in your muscles and get things back in order.

Good for: Office workers who suffer from sore shoulders or stiff necks, as well as anyone with a muscle-related injury that can be assisted by massage.

Sports massage

A sports massage is similar to a remedial but with a particular focus on areas of the body typically affected by sports.

Great if you do a lot of exercise, and can be had for pre and post game. A lot of footy players like it as it is really good for hamstrings.

Good for: Sports players


This massage eases the pain that normally comes with pregnancy such as lower back pain and sore feet.

One of the most noticeable differences with pregnancy massage is that if the woman is in her second or third trimester, she may have to lie on her side or use a pregnancy pillow.

You need to make sure you see a qualified pregnancy massage therapist as they must be sensitive to particular areas of your body, ensuring both you and the bub are kept safe.

Good for: Pregnant women.

Hot Stone

This massage once again is on the more relaxing end of the spectrum. It’s calming, nurturing massage and great for circulation, perfect in the winter.

Good for: Probably the same people who would appreciate a Swedish massage, but in winter.

Dry needling

The practice of dry needling is a common technique in manual physical therapy. It involves inserting 3 to 5cm needles into “trigger points” and is typically used for pain associated with injuries. By using a needle tension within the muscles is released.

Dry needling is different to acupuncture, because it works on muscle tissue as opposed to acupoints determined from eastern medicine.

Good for: athletes with injuries or anyone with tight muscles.