From the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Lymph Formation,” by Joachim E. Zuther, in the September 2009 issue. Article summary: The lymphatic system is represented by a network of vessels, tissues, organs and cells by which lymph fluid is able to flow from the tissue spaces back into the bloodstream. Like the cardiovascular system, it is interactive with every organ and directly related to the body’s immune function and efficiency.

by Jenny Hogan

Clearer skin, brighter eyes, energy and vitality are some of the benefits of a detoxification series featuring lymphatic drainage. Detoxification is just one of the many massage modalities you can provide with professional electromechanical massage equipment, in order to give you a hand in your practice and provide a powerful, effective and gentle therapy for your clients.

Manual lymphatic drainage involves a light, rhythmical massage that moves stagnant lymphatic fluid, a substance derived from body tissues that contains white blood cells. Stimulation of lymphatic flow is one of the most beneficial aspects of massage.

Lymphatic drainage is a modality that professional massage systems excel in providing, due to their ability to penetrate far below the body’s surface.

The lymphatic system is a separate system from arteries and veins, and it acts to remove bacteria and toxins from cells, as well as move damaged cells and excess fluids away from any affected areas, promoting healing. If a lymph passage is blocked or congested due to surgery, injury or inflammation, fluids can build up in the connective tissue, leading to edema. Unlike the vascular system, the lymphatic system is pumpless and lymphatic vessels are very low-pressure conduits. Lymph transport is sporadic and much slower than that occurring in veins. Massage stimulates the lymphatic system to quickly remove fluids and toxins away from cells to be processed and cleansed, promoting healthy lymph flow and faster healing from any blockages or congestion.

Every day we are exposed to toxins in our daily environments. Pollution, unhealthy eating, unfiltered water, smoking and stress all contribute to toxic accumulation. From simple fatigue and muscle pain to chronic diseases, the effects of toxic accumulation are many. Manual lymphatic drainage follows a certain pattern through the body, and a practitioner would follow these patterns as he or she works to re-establish good lymph circulation.

Offering a series of detoxifying lymphatic drainage massages with an electromechanical massage machine is an ideal way to provide an effective therapy for your clients, all while reducing your physical strain and taking the “muscle” out of your massage routine.

Jenny Hogan is media director at Marketing Solutions Inc., a full-service marketing, advertising and PR agency specializing in the professional beauty business. For more information, call (703) 359-6000, visit or e-mail

General Physiotherapy has been an industry leader in professional therapeutic massage equipment for more than 35 years. General Physiotherapy’s G5 brand massage systems offer the unique feature of directional-stroking, which is the action of simultaneously delivering perpendicular and horizontal forces through the smooth motion of the head of the unit. The concurrent actions of these two forces act to gently loosen areas of congestion and move fluids, making it an appropriate modality for lymphatic drainage. For more information, call (800) 237-1832 or visit