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    4/26/2012 - Happy Marriage: Massage for Lovers by Stephen Martin, MFT, and Victoria Costello
    Posted in Unspecified

    Happy Marriage

    Massage can be done as a sumptuous three-course dinner or as a brief snack — a small loving gesture at the end of a long day. When you don't have enough time or energy for a complete body massage, a hand or foot massage is a great gift. Or it can be a part of the preamble before sexual activity. You'll be surprised how much energy comes to you once you get in a flow doing the massage on your partner.

    Even if neither of you has been trained in massage techniques, you can help relax tense muscles and give your partner the gift of loving touch. Every part of the body responds to the stimulus of touch.

    One thinks immediately of a lover's breasts, genitals, and lips. But what about her toes, earlobes, stomach, ankles, and forehead? Each of these parts of the body should receive loving attention during a massage.

    The Relaxation Massage

    Choose a quiet, private place, such as a bedroom, or the living room when you can have it to yourselves. Drape the bed, floor, or massage table with a sheet.

    Light some candles; doing so will immediately change the mood. Put on some relaxing music at a low volume.

    Warm up the room with the heat on.

    The woman (or man) receiving the massage gets nude, lies down on her back, and begins to concentrate on her breathing, inhaling for a few seconds and then letting her breath float out.

    The man (or woman) giving the massage takes a small amount (a few drops) of scented massage oil (olive oil works fine) and warms it up in the palms of his hands.

    The man then centers himself by putting his attention on his own breathing. He places his hands on her shoulders to make an energy connection between the two of them, letting their breathing get in sync.

    The woman turns over onto her stomach and continues slow deep breathing.

    The man places his oiled palms on the small of her back. He rubs her back using both whole hands in gentle, long strokes. He strokes from the base of the back, up toward the neck, and then back down the sides of the back. He does this for at least two minutes.

    The woman puts her attention to whatever part of her body is being stroked. The massage is usually done in silence so each person can remain in his body, feeling the energy going out and coming in.

    The man gradually increases his pressure as he massages her back and each subsequent area. He kneads the flesh around her shoulders and neck, common places for tension. He follows her muscles across the shoulders and down each arm.

    Returning to the small of her back, he uses both hands to rub the flesh away from the spine and then back toward it, keeping in rhythm.

    At base of the spine, he begins stroking downward across the buttocks; then sweeps his hands down each leg several times using a lighter motion.

    He strokes her calves, paying particular attention to her feet, rubbing beneath the arch, pulling gently on the toes.

    When he has finished the massage, her turns the receiver back over and gently pulls the sheet up to cover her, in order to hold in her body warmth. She may fall asleep, or she can rest for a while and then reciprocate by massaging him.

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