Therapies to De-Stress Mind and Body

Neal's Yard Remedies

Neal's Yard Remedies

Writer and expert

The body can be the barometer for stress. When we get distracted by the demands of life, it’s easy to ignore some of the hints our bodies send us, asking for a little TLC. From misaligned vertebrae and overworked muscles to creaking knees and a stiff neck, we all know the feeling of our bodies not feeling quite right. But the longer we ignore our symptoms, the worse they can become.

Thankfully, we have a range of therapies that can offer some relief, and show you how to release stress from the body. De-stressing the body can help de-stress the mind, so we’ve put together a selection of Neal's Yard Remedies therapies designed to help keep stress levels more manageable.

What is Body Stress Release?

Body Stress Release was pioneered in South Africa in the 1980s. It’s founded on the principle that when we’re exposed to physical, emotional or chemical stress, the body stores the stress in its muscles, leading to cramps, muscle stiffness, postural distortion and even pain. Muscle tension puts pressure on the nerves, affecting your body’s communication system and ability to self-heal.

The benefit of Body Stress Release is that it can help you feel more relaxed while improving the body’s ability to heal and maintain. During a session, you’ll be fully clothed while your therapist uses light, gentle pressure to test the body for stress, encouraging it to release tension and bring relief from discomfort.

What is Sports Massage?

Sports massage has its roots in athletic performance and was first used in 1812 by Swedish fencing master and gymnast Pehr Henrik Ling. However, it wasn’t until 1924 that the modern version of sports massage emerged. With techniques having evolved significantly throughout the years, sports massage is mainly used to help athletes realign and relax tight muscles – but it can also help release everyday stress.

Deep and intense, your Neal’s Yard Remedies massage therapist will incorporate a combination of techniques to help alleviate the stress and tension that builds up in the body’s soft tissues during physical activity, helping you perform better and evade injury during your favourite sports.

What is Reflexology?

Reflexology is an ancient massage technique dating back to ancient Egypt, India and China – though it wasn’t introduced to the west until the 1900s. Reflexologists believe that the feet, ears and hands harbour reflex points that are linked to certain parts of the body – including the organs.

During a session, a reflexologist will apply different amounts of pressure to the feet, hands and ears to alleviate stress, restore balance and help you feel more relaxed.

What is Shiatsu?

One of our lesser-known treatments, shiatsu means 'finger pressure'; an ancient Japanese therapy that, like acupuncture, works on pressure points and meridians.

Where traditional massages rely on rubbing motions, oils and lotions, shiatsu relies on finger and palm pressure – like kneading, pressing, tapping and stretching – to release stress and promote overall wellbeing. Shiatsu is also believed to reduce muscle stiffness, stimulate the skin and aid digestion.

For expecting and new mums...

Becoming a mother is a time to be cherished – but it can also be physically and mentally draining. While your body is adjusting to this enormous change, it’s important to give it some TLC to reduce muscle pain and tension caused by pregnancy.

Pre and post-natal massage are both complementary therapies in pregnancy, and their techniques have been used for over 3,000 years to help expecting mums stay stress-free. Performed both during and after pregnancy, this gentle full-body massage focuses on the problem areas new and expectant mothers face as their bodies change. As well as encouraging relaxation, it helps ease aches, pains and stresses caused by pregnancy, as well as aiding with anxiety and improving the quality of your sleep.