Ciona Johnson King



So I had a different kind of massage yesterday – lymphatic drainage. As someone who likes my therapist to be like Dwayne Johnson beating up the bad guy when it comes to massage pressure, this was a bold move. In lymphatic drainage your body is only lightly touched not pummelled. There’s no need for anything full-on since the lymph nodes are just under your skin.Here’s the science bit about lymphatic drainage. Thankyou Wikipedia:‘Manual manipulation of the lymphatic ducts consists of gentle, rhythmic massaging of the skin to stimulate the flow of lymph (a nutrient transporting fluid) and its return to the blood circulation system. In the blood’s passage through the kidneys, the excess fluid that has collected toxins on its journey is filtered out and eliminated from the body through urination.’Oh, you gotta love urination. In short, more lymphatic flow = more weeing = fewer toxins. That’s a happy immune system. Here’s a diagram of where the main lymph areas (nodes) are. The picture’s not me, btw:

Ciona Johnson King

So in the treatment, the skin is first brushed to stimulate the glands before the main areas are massaged. My therapist started on the groin. Now I’m quite fussy about who touches my groin but I soon settled in. Then she moved to some usual places (legs, back, feet), some unusual (armpits), all without my favourite hardcore pressure. But once I got in that calmer zone, it was an incredible feeling. With its slower, more gentle pace you really appreciate the sensations more.

The session done – I’d fallen asleep for maybe 10 minutes of it – I felt spaced out. My body ached. I was incredibly thirsty. That night I was relaxed like never before, barely able to string a sentence together… but happy. I was asleep by 10pm.

Even today, I can still feel the effects. My body is relaxed yet tingly, calm but full of energy (I’ve just been for a run). I feel revived and focused. Inside I kinda get the feeling that my immune system is smiling too.

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