Whether you’ve been hunched up at your desk too long or going hard on the at-home cardio, sometimes you just need a relaxing massage to ease those sore, aching muscles. Right now, visiting a masseuse isn’t an option – plus, it can be costly and time-consuming – but there are ways you can give yourself a massage on the go, lending a quick fix for tense necks, shoulders and hands.
Intrigued? We’ve pulled together all the tricks you need to give yourself a massage and eke out knots and pummel away tension whenever a tight neck strikes.
What to Use for Self-Massage
Massage is made easier with a cream or balm to help hands glide. Here are two we love for their massage-enhancing qualities…
CBD Muscle Balm: A little goes a long way with this eucalyptus-infused balm. Because you need such a small amount (around ⅓ of a teaspoon), you’ll find a pot lasts a long time, even if you’re applying it to pressure points every day. Warm a little in the palms of hands before your massage, so it smoothes over skin with ease.
CBD Skin Cream: Lighter in texture and quickly absorbed, this cream is also infused with eucalyptus, which feels refreshingly tingly and cooling on the skin. It’s our recommended pick if you have an oily complexion – especially on your back or shoulders – thanks to the completely non-greasy formula.
How to Give Yourself a Neck Massage
Heard of tech neck? It refers to the ache we feel when we’ve been staring at our phones too long, but you can experience similar soreness from a bad night’s sleep or stress-related jaw clenching.
If that sounds familiar, try this: relax your neck by lifting and dropping your shoulders, before slowly tucking your chin down into your chest. Hold this stretch for a few breaths.
Next, with the CBD Muscle Balm warmed in the palms of hands, gently press the back of your neck. Then, use two or three fingertips to massage the area where your neck and shoulders meet, avoiding the spine. To do this, you simply press and hold, then release when the muscles feel more relaxed. Combine with the next massage to elevate that soothed, yogic sensation.
How to Give Yourself a Shoulder Massage
You might not notice you’re doing it, but when you’re spending long hours in front of a screen, you tend to raise or hunch your shoulders up – cue that tight, ‘scrunched-up’ feeling. To ease them back down, apply the CBD Muscle Balm or Skin Cream to your right hand, then use it to reach over your left shoulder and gently but firmly squeeze the muscle.
While still squeezing, roll your left shoulder backwards, so it’s repeatedly pressing into your right hand. This motion will allow fingertips to give a light massage, while shoulders get some muscle-warming movement. Keep rolling until you feel the tension start to loosen up, then repeat on the other side. It’s so quick and easy, you can even do it at your desk.
How to Give Yourself a Hand Massage
Between texting, scrolling and typing, you put more strain on your hands than you realise, which can leave your wrists or fingers feeling tight and tense, as if they need to ‘click’.
To soothe hands, shake them out then squeeze a pea-sized amount of CBD Skin Cream into the palms. (Tip: Because it’s brimming with skin-softening plant extracts, it can double up as a hydrating hand cream.) Rub the cream in, then hold out your right hand with fingers outstretched and the palm facing upwards. Wrap your left hand around it, so your thumb is resting on the palm.
Use this left thumb to trace the edge of your right hand in small, circular motions, and gradually massage inwards until you reach the centre of the palm. Next, use your left thumb and forefinger to lightly squeeze and pinch each finger on your right hand. Work from the base to the very tips, releasing tension as you go.
When you’re done, repeat on the other hand, adding a little more Skin Cream if needed. We’ll be trying this technique before bed – after we’ve put our phone down – so massaged hands get a much-needed digital detox.
Want more tips on easing tension? Next, read about the possible impact of CBD for anxiety and stress, featuring tips and advice from private psychiatrist Dr. Balu.