How To Give A Hand And Foot Massage
How to give a hand and foot massage is relatively simple, requiring only time, a lubricant and a desire to provide the massage to that lucky someone. Though a professional massage may be most beneficial in terms of stress relief or for muscle strain, a hand and foot massage given by an average person can feel exquisitely relaxing when done with attention on comfortable pressure and the intention to make the recipient feel good.
Each hand and foot should take approximately five to seven minutes to massage well enough to induce relaxation and ease any muscle tension.
- Set the stage. Be sure the receiver has clean hands and feet and is sitting or laying down in a comfortable place. Soft music and lighting can create a relaxing (or romantic) mood. Have the receiver remove all jewelry and bare their arms to the elbow and their legs to their knees to avoid getting lubricant on clothing.
- Warm lubricant. A lubricant is any type of massage oil, powder, cream or lotion that acts as a barrier to restrict friction between the giver's hands and the recipient's body. Warm the lubricant by rubbing it in your hands before applying to the other person's skin.
- Apply massage lubricant to the hands. Put approximately 1/2 teaspoon of lubricant in your hands and rub together. Starting with the hands, use your palms to distribute the oil over the person's entire hand and wrist area. Use slow, rhythmic strokes to help induce relaxation. Once the skin is sufficiently covered, use your thumbs to make small circles over the entire palm of the receiver's hand. Gently massage and pull each of the fingers, then turn the hand over and gently use your thumbs to massage the back of the hand and all around the wrist. Finish with palm strokes over the hand and wrist before moving to the other hand.
- Apply massage oil or lotion to the feet. Use 1/2 teaspoon of lubricant (add more as needed to cover the foot area) and use your palms to distribute the oil or lotion to the ankle and the entire sole and top of the foot, including the toes. Once again, use slow, rhythmic strokes to induce the relaxation effect. Use your knuckles to make small circular motions on the soles of the foot. A deeper pressure is generally desired for the soles. Switch from time to time to massaging with your thumbs, but don't overdo because it's easy to strain the thumbs with foot massage. Gently massage and pull the toes. Massage the tops of the feet in circular motions with a more gentle pressure using your thumbs and finish with palm stroking over the entire foot and ankle region. Massage the other foot.
- Cover for warmth. At this point, the recipient is likely comfortably relaxed and may be asleep or just want to stay where they are for awhile longer. Cover the person with a blanket to preserve warmth if necessary.