Stone therapy, whether hot or cold, can benefit your massage clients in various ways. The heating and cooling effects of the stones, placed strategically along the body’s pressure points, will add to regular massage techniques, helping the body’s muscles to relax faster and easier.

By learning the benefits and techniques of stone massage in the privacy of your home or office through home study courses, massage therapists can easily implement these tools into practice.

A stone massage typically consists of heated or chilled stones of varying sizes. Often basalt, a volcanic rock that conducts heat well, is the mineral of choice in the treatment, but other types can be used. The stones are placed along the spine, in the palms of the hands and between the toes.

Some benefits of hot- and cold-stone massage include aiding in decongestion, increasing oxygen intake, having deeper muscle penetration, improving blood circulation, reducing swelling in the body, reducing stress and the cleansing of toxins in the body.

Stone massages can also be used to treat conditions like multiple sclerosis, arthritis, fibromyalgia, insomnia and depression. It has also been known to help with back pain, stress and anxiety; however, clients who are sick, have a heart or circulation condition, or sensitive skin should not receive stone massage.

An Internet search resulted in numerous home study courses any massage therapist can take to fulfill her continuing education requirements.

For stone massage, some of the courses offered cover such topics as the differentiation of stones shapes, stone sizes, giving holistic stone facials, mineralogy, recommended uses of stones, stone placement, Ayurvedic principles and detoxification protocols.

Make sure to check with your national and state licensing bodies to make sure the courses you select are acceptable for continuing education credits.

–Jeremy Maready