Self-Massage for Body Pain

Self-Massage for Body Pain

When you are in pain, getting rapid relief is essential. This is why reaching for medications has become so commonplace. They are easy to find and usually work fast, like ibuprofen or aspirin for a headache. The problem of course is that an accumulation of over-the-counter (OTC) meds can cause adverse health effects, particularly in your kidneys.

Self-massage for body pain is one way to stop aches or stress before they can takeover. These are easy to apply techniques that can be done practically anywhere. The more you practice self-massage, the more you’ll be able to control your pain without medication.

Digital Eye Strain

From your cell phone to a kiosk at the local bank you’re eyes are most likely bombarded with screen exposure every single day. The wear and tear on your eyes can be enormous with some professionals warning of its impact.

A 2016 report in The Financial Times stated that,

“Some 50-90 per cent of people who work at computer screens have symptoms of “digital eye strain”, say studies. This can include dry, sore eyes, headaches or blurred vision.”

Gentle massage for sore, tired eyes may help reduce digital eye strain and enhance vision in the long run.

Self-massage for digital eye strain:

  • Wash your hands
  • Close your eyes
  • Rub palms together rapidly for 30 seconds
  • Gently press palms over closed eyes and hold for 30 seconds
  • Gently lean into pads of each thumb between eyes and bridge of nose
  • Slowly press around eye socket being sure not to poke your eye
  • Repeat two times and throughout the day.


The spike or pressure of a pulsing headache can be very painful. However, before you reach for an OTC remedy, try your hands first. Pressing and massaging certain points on the head, face and neck has been shown to stall headaches, including migraines, significantly relieving full blown episodes.

According to a study published in the American Public Health Association,

“Our specific massage technique may also benefit headache sufferers during an acute headache episode. On 4 occasions when a subject entered the massage session with a headache, the headache was alleviated by the end of the 30-minute treatment; on no occasion did a subject enter treatment without a headache and leave with one. This suggests that massage administered during a headache episode might result in immediate beneficial effects and that patients should be instructed in appropriate self-massage.”

Self-massage for headaches:

  • Wash your hands
  • Press your thumb along the back ridge where your skull meets your neck
  • Breathe in your nose, out your mouth with each slow, deep thumb press
  • Some of these points will resonate to your headache and when they do, hold them and gently move your thumb counterclockwise
  • Place index fingers on temples
  • Gently push and circle counterclockwise
  • Move index fingers to side of nose cheek points and run toward your ears
  • Glide fingers over jaw muscles toward chin
  • Open mouth and gently press thumbs or index fingers into jaw joint and hold
  • Repeat as needed

Tennis Ball for Feet, Butt and Back

Using a tennis or hard ball to relieve sore muscles in your feet, butt, and back can work wonders. Do this at home, in your parked car, or, if possible, at your desk at work. 

  • Sit or stand and step on a tennis ball in socks or bare feet
  • Press and roll into the bottom of your feet being sure to stop and go deeper at tender points
  • Lie on your back
  • Place tennis ball or a hard ball over clothing under your upper butt muscles
  • Let your weight press into the ball and hold where points feel good (these points can resonate to and relieve a sore lower back, be careful not to hit your bones)
  • Sit on the ground with your legs bent, your hands resting on the ground behind you, and a tennis or hard ball under your butt cheek
  • Lift your leg off the ground and roll around on the ball, working into the places you feel most tension
  • Repeat on both sides

Knee Points

Knee pain is so common these days it seems like every other person is getting surgery for it. Some believe that self-massage might alleviate knee pain before it gets to be too much of a challenge. This is followed in ClassicalChinese Medicine (CCM) as it is taught that stuck energy is the cause of pain and point work (self-massage or acupuncture) unlocks it.

International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork published the study, ‘The Effects of Self-Massage on Osteoarthritis of the Knee: a Randomized, Controlled Trial’

“The reported benefits of massage include breaking the pain cycle, improving function, reducing edema, promoting relaxation, and facilitating healing in various medical conditions…The study demonstrated that participants who have OA (osteoarthritis) of the knee benefit from the self-massage intervention therapy.”

Self-massage for knee pain:

  • Over clothing or with washed hands directly on your quadricep skin, gently squeeze and rake (with open fingers) muscles 3-4 times from knee to hip and groin (never push your kneecap)
  • Gently press with your thumb around and behind your knee, up your thigh (top and sides) and in both soft parts of your shins
  • Repeat as needed

Use these self-massage for body pain tips to keep yourself running on all cylinders. Sometimes, relief is as easy as utilizing your own healing tools.