In Swedish massage, the therapist uses five basic strokes, effleurage, petrissage, tapotement, friction and vibration/shaking. The effleurage strokes are those that are long gliding or sliding strokes. Petrissage stroke are kneading strokes which are generally used to break up muscle tissue and tension. Tapotement or rhythmic tapping helps with blood circulation and friction strokes are used to break up muscle tightness and scar tissue.
Swedish massage is basically used to increase the oxygen flow in the blood to release toxins. This type of massage has been shown to assist in reducing pain, joint stiffness and poor circulation. In addition, it has also been known to reduce stress and provides for a very relaxing massage. Many people will choose this type of massage as a regular program for overall well being and relaxation.