The Art of Body Brushing

It’s so good for you…..and so easy!

According to research, 5 minutes of energetic body brushing tones your muscles as much as a 30 minute jog – I know which I’d choose!

So what does it do for us and what’s the best way to do it?

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Body brushing  improves our health by:

  • stimulating the body’s circulation
  • toning muscles
  • improving the nervous system
  • helping the lymphatic system remove waste and toxins and break down cellulite
  • removing dead skin layers, leaving the skin glowing and healthy

taking a shower - The Art of Body Brushing

It’s generally better to brush before your morning shower as the effects can be stimulating and stop you falling asleep if done too near bedtime.  You need to shower after brushing to remove dead skin cells.  To be extra virtuous you could alternate warm and cold water a few times while you the shower.  This will further benefit  blood, lymph and nerves.


It’s important to brush the right way to encourage good circulation and here’s how:

Use long strokes and brush towards the heart.  Start at the feet and brush up the legs.  Similarly with the arms, start with the hands and brush up towards shoulders.  Brush upwards over bottom and lower back.  Above the heart, you need downward strokes so brush down from shoulders over the chest.body brushing1 - The Art of Body Brushing

Use brisk, light strokes.  Not too hard – I promise there will be gain without pain!  And don’t use over the face – the bristles are too rough for delicate facial skin.  Also avoid infected or damaged skin and don’t brush if you have eczema, psoriasis or varicose veins.

Lastly, you need to clean your body brush.  Every week or so simply soak the brush in warm water with some teatree or eucalyptus oil.  Then hang up to dry.

body brushes - The Art of Body Brushing


Happy Pregnancy – the joys of pregnancy massage

Last week I went on a Pregnancy Massage course – what a delightful day that was!

The therapy is tailored to the needs of pregnant women so it is gentle, peaceful pregnant woman - Happy Pregnancy - the joys of pregnancy massageand nurturing.  It starts with gentle rocking of mother (and baby), deep breathing and stretches to open up the spaces around the ribs for easier breathing. It’s then followed by back, arm and hand, leg and foot massages and ends with a relaxing face and scalp massage.  It leaves the mother feeling calm and rested.  There are extra techniques included for oedema (swelling), leg cramps, back pain, shortness of breath and, of course, morning sickness.

Before we started, I was wondering how I (and my pregnant clients) would feel about having the stomach massaged.  Would it feel intrusive, too intimate (I’m not pregnant but….well let’s just say my stomach could be flatter)?  But now I know why dogs can’t get enough of having their tummies rubbed!  I could have had that all day – it felt so good.  Of course, the client has the choice of omitting this or being stroked over towels.

pregnant with heart2 - Happy Pregnancy - the joys of pregnancy massageBut the extra joy of this massage is that the baby can respond to it as well as the mother.   Therapists have reported feeling the baby moving when they massage over the tummy.  They also report feeling the baby turning in the direction of the area the therapist is working on.

There are lots of benefits for the baby.  Obviously a calmer, healthier, happier mother can only benefit the baby.  But also the endorphins, (happy hormones) released by the mother during the massage are transmitted to the baby via the placenta – leading to a calmer, happier baby.

It has been observed that regular pregnancy massage reduces the trauma of childbirth with a shorter, less painful labour.  This is often quoted but I can’t verify it from my own experience yet.  Further down the line, when I have massaged some pregnant ladies and got feedback on their labour and birthing experiences I will report back.


pregnancy massage with towel - Happy Pregnancy - the joys of pregnancy massageJust to conclude, some images of pregnancy massage can be off-putting, with the mother lying on her front or back with bump exposed.  Actually, most of the time she is lying comfortably on her side supported with extra pillows and covered in towels with only the area worked on exposed at any time.

Pregnancy massage gives some cherishing and cosseting to mother and baby (as well as relief from symptoms and conditions of pregnancy) – my contribution to a happy outcome!