Hot Stone Massage Techniques

massaging client with stones

Hot stone therapy has fast become a favorite in massage spas and among massage professionals. This form of therapy involves the use of heated stones during massage to determine the problem areas of a client and to aid in effective treatment. The stones are usually made of basalt although other stones such as marble can be used..Therapists intending to offer this treatment should be aware that it requires a certain level of expertise as too much pressure can make it very uncomfortable for the client.


When giving a hot stone massage, preparation is very essential. You need to fix the materials you will use, arrange the stones themselves, prepare the massage table and also prepare your client. Whether you are stationary like in a spa, or you are travel to give massages, the heating source for the stones is a crucial consideration. There are heating devices that are sold particularly for heating the stones. If you have a stove, that could also work.

In preparing the stones, you need to give thought to what kind of stone you want to use and how many. The number of stones you will use in a hot stone massage vary and would usually dependent on the technique you want to use. The more stones you have, the less need to reheat the stones as you can just replace a cold stone for the warmer one. This type of deep tissue massage is believed to promote blood circulation, boost energy and promote relaxation.

General Hot Stone Massage

In general, this massage technique uses warm, smooth Basalt or volcano rock. The heat from the rocks is believed to help release muscle tension, and it provides a deep tissue massage. Before the therapy begins, the therapist immerses the rocks in the water and heats it using a heating unit.

Hot Stone Back Massage

This type of therapy has the same effect as a general hot stone massage. The only difference, this treatment focuses primarily on the back. It has been said that this therapy is very relaxing because of the heat from the stones; this allows the therapist to give a deep tissue massage with less pressure.

Hot Stone Horizontal Massage

Once again, this treatment is similar to a general full body hot stone massage, but targets specific areas and muscles rather than on the whole body. The therapist focuses on your arms, the back, legs, neck, and feet.

Hot Stone Facial Massage

This variation uses traditional Asian stones, or yen stones, that are smooth, round, doughnut-shaped stones. The typical basalt stones are not used in hot face massages due to the fact of their surface is too rough and can cause micro-scratches on the face. Heating pads are used to warm the yen stones. Hot stone facial massage is said to be very relaxing. It also stimulates the brain and the nervous system, increasing the blood flow and lymph circulation.


Before you begin a hot stone massage, you should have some knowledge of massaging techniques as this is still basically a massage. Also, make sure that you make use of quality materials and are professional. Hot stone massage is rapidly gaining popularity and having a good understanding of the techniques and steps will boost your business.

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