Moonstone Massage and Manual Therapy

By Christine Hernandez, CMT, AMMP

Therapeutic or Medical Massage? Which One is Right for You

Massage Therapy is a very diverse art and science. What’s the difference between a therapeutic massage and a medical massage? After all, a massage is a massage, right? These types of treatment each have a unique purpose.. Keep reading to learn which one is right for you!


A clinical massage usually has a defined purpose in mind: to relieve pain or tension on a specific part of the body. You may have been referred by a physician, and your insurance may even be covering all or some of your visits. With medical treatment, the intention is to improve a specific ailment or condition. However, in a therapeutic setting, there is no clear end goal in mind. Often times, the reason for a therapeutic treatment is more general. The therapist seeks to relax and destress the patient, rather than to heal them.


You may be seeking out massage treatment to relieve muscle pain or tension, or just to relax and unload some stress. However, you do not want to mistakenly pursue the wrong course of treatment. Patients often seek out medical therapy for a specific injury or pain. Naturally, in a medical setting, you will experience more targeted techniques, such as Myofascial Release or Trigger Point Therapy. The therapist will approach the treatment with your specific needs in mind, resulting in more individualized treatment. If you have a specific pain or dysfunction that you wish to address, then you should consider seeking out medical help, rather than therapeutic treatment.

During a therapeutic treatment , you’ll likely receive more basic therapy that is focused on relaxation.  Although therapeutic therapists have been trained in the  general art of massage, they may not have the same level of expertise as a physical therapist. Christine has  received additional training in the form of continuing education courses and certifications, which allows her  to provide advanced care and treatment styles.


While a therapeutic massage may successfully relax you or temporarily relieve some stress, medical massage will produce tangible results. Medical massage therapy treatment is planned out with a specific goal in mind, and your massage will factor into a larger treatment plan that is based around your health needs and goals.

i am here to meet you where you are today. 

Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals
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