Updated: Nov 10, 2021
Heat has long been used to ease muscle tension and pain, Hot Stone Massage sessions can be performed using basalt stones, a type of volcanic rock that retains heat. The stones are usually heated to around 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54 degrees Celsius) and either placed into specific areas in the body or used as a massage tool.
"Strongly magnetic, basalt grounds floaty people, anchoring the physical body to the planet and the soul to the body. Maintaining the structure of the body, it gives muscular strength and cohesion." — Judy Hall, The Crystal Companion
We often include the use of basalt stones to our sessions or recommend this protocol to:
Ease muscle stiffness, melting away tension
Increase circulation and metabolism
Encourage blood flow throughout the body
Support de-stress, reduce anxiety and promote sleep
May boost immunity
A stone of re-birth, renewal, strength, and courage, basalt promotes stability throughout changes in life supporting one to discern where eventual changes in behavior and choices could be helpful.
“Basalt has undergone metamorphosis, so assists transformation and provides a solid support during life challenges. It helps you be more resilient under pressure and achieve a positive perspective on your situation” — Judy Hall, The Crystal Companion
I eventually include hot stones to my therapeutic massage sessions either in preparation to touch or as a tool to support relaxation when I identify deep tension to certain muscles tissue or muscle groups in my clients. This allows the muscles to relax and be ready to receive the hands work more effectively, fostering faster and more efficient results in a session. Clients can also chose to have a full Hot Stones Massage session if desired when looking for a grounding and relaxing experience.
Some therapists perform hot stones massage by placing the stones along the body. I tend to use the heated stones while massaging the body using long strokes and gliding with high quality herbal infused oils carefully selected to support my client's constitution and for an enhanced therapeutic effect. These oils are almost always organic (or wildcrafted) and made by companies deeply committed to environmental sustainability: Banyan Botanicals, Floracopeia, FarmTrue, etc.
Contra-indications for hot stone massage: Caution is needed when working with clients under any blood thiner medication, heart conditions, diabetes, or high blood pressure. Clients with any of these conditions should avoid full body hot stones massage, but eventually could benefit of some use of hot stones around the upper back and shoulder areas.
Carol Jamault is a Certified Health & Life Coach, Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT), and Registered Yoga Instructor (RYT-200). She supports her clients in stress management and self-care through an integrative approach to wellness by providing bodywork services, consultations, curated information, and products to restore balance, improve individual wellness, and boost vitality. Carol has been studying alternative healing, ethnobotany, circadian medicine, and Ayurveda since 2001. She is the founder of Hridayam Bodywork & Apothecary. Meet Carol for ayurvedic massage treatments and coaching at LiftVida Pilates and Gyrotonic Studio in Coral Gables (Florida, USA).