Tightness in the brow ridge above the eyes, the supraorbital ridge, is another one of those small, delicate spots where addressing it can be wonderfully helpful, yet it’s an often overlooked area, especially when limited time is usually a part of any bodywork session. Relaxing this zone can ease eye tension, affecting our eyesight; it can release pressure on the sinuses located right behind the brow ridges; and it can reduce tension being held throughout the facial muscles, felt both within the tissue and the emotions.
Some people love having their complexion touched while others do not. It’s always best to ask your client first about receiving facial massage, making sure no medium (oil or excess lotion) is on your hands, as it can make people break out, alter their makeup, and so on. Working close to the seat of someone’s sensory organs (eyes, nose, mouth, ears), creates that much more of a need for awareness and sensitivity in approach. The forefinger tips are usually easiest to use here, placing one at a time lightly but with assurance, so the recipient can relax into having digit tips that close to their eyes. Try starting at the medial edge of the brows, doing a gentle pull with the forefingers in a superior direction, away from the eyes. The client can often immediately feel sinus passages opening and tension dissipating out of furrowed expressions, away from the center of the face. Noticing how the therapist gives the eyes plenty of space usually generates even more relaxation within the client. For the massage therapist, it feels good to let the finger tips sink into that bony curve at the top sides of the nose, right between the brows. There is a happy sense of evaporating tension within a few seconds; a sense of positive, focused effect being created quickly and easily.
Working within small, delicate areas can sometimes create more hand tension for the therapist, so it’s good to change how the hands are used. Try thumbs for a few seconds instead of forefinger tips, or all four fingertips on the length of the brows sweeping medial to lateral while also pulling in a slightly cranial direction. Alternating with fluid, slow deliberation amongst the aforementioned approaches can feel good to both the therapist and the client. It creates a subtle wave of changes in address, contact, pressure, and direction, keeping the therapist and client very present, focused yet relaxed, and more interested in what’s occurring. A meditative moment shared by both people, in a tiny space with a big effect.
Copyright © by Lara Stillo 2016