One of the most commonly used rocks during a stone massage is the basalt stone. These rocks are best used during a hot stone massage as they retain the heat so well. These rocks, when heated, warm the skin and loosen the muscles, making it easier for the body to absorb the oils basalt stones are often covered in. These are naturally occurring oils in basalt that happen as a result of the magnesium, serpentine, manganese, and iron that basalt stones are rich in. The combination of these oils creates a natural lubricant that aids the muscles in relief of stress and tension.
Jade is another type of stone commonly used during a heated massage. They also serve as an excellent muscle relaxant. The Chinese were the first to see healing properties in jade, and massage therapists today believe that using jade during a massage promotes longevity, generosity, compassion, and courage. Jade stones, when chilled, are often used during massage to quickly bring clients to a state of deep relaxation. This is especially beneficial as less effort is required on part of the massage therapists to bring about this level of relaxation on their own. When used in this way, stones are simply held in the therapist's hands and used as tools.
Marble is a type of massage pebble exclusively used during cold stone massage. These pebbles are created from living organisms and naturally mixed with calcite and limestone. Massage therapists typically place marble stones on specific points in the body with the intentions of removing blocked energy. It is believed these pebbles help create a sense of balance within the body.
While some rocks are best used exclusively for either hot or cold stone therapy massage, sardonyx is the big exception to this rule. This rock is one of the oldest rocks known to man and retains both temperature extremes amazingly well.
Therapists using these stones believe they work particularly well at relieving stress and anxiety. One of the unique benefits sardonyx offers is its function as a sleep aid. This works well for massage therapists wishing to bring their clients to the ultimate state of relaxation. Clients have also reported feeling a certain state of protection from bad energy as a result of these stones. These sleep aid benefits carry on far beyond the massage appointment too, as clients have reported better sleeping patterns following regular stone massages uses sardonyx.
When giving and getting stone massages it's important to realize that not all stones are created equal. Some stones are best suited for heat, others for cold, while a chosen few are considered "all purpose."