Deep Tissue massage is similar to Swedish therapy, but the deeper pressure is beneficial in releasing chronic muscle tension. The focus is on the deepest layer of muscle tissue, tendons and fascia (the protective layer surrounding muscles, bones and joints). A type of massage therapy, deep tissue massage uses deep, slow strokes to reach deeper layers of muscle and fascia (the connective tissue surrounding muscles). It's used for chronic aches and pain and contracted areas such as a stiff neck and upper back, low back pain, leg muscle tightness, and sore shoulders. It's used to break up scar tissue and physically break down muscle "knots" or adhesions (bands of painful, rigid tissue) that can disrupt circulation and cause pain, limited range of motion, and inflammation. At the beginning of the massage, lighter pressure is generally applied to warm up and prep the muscles. Specific techniques are then applied. The most common techniques includes Stripping - deep, gliding pressure along the length of the muscle fibers using the elbow, forearm, knuckles, and thumbs. Friction - pressure applied across the grain of a muscle to release adhesions and realign tissue fibers.