The main causes of tension are mechanical -like sitting at your desk all day in one position or participating in sports and the other type is emotional tension. Mechanical tension includes trauma, bad posture, and things like injuries. Environmental factors can also influence muscle tension. Breathing polluted air and eating the wrong foods can influence tension.
Emotional tension is also referred to as armoring (Willhelm Riech) When emotions are not felt fully at any stage of life they can become suppressed or repressed. Repression is the unconscious prevention of feelings. Suppression is the conscious prevention of feelings. Either way, we try to protect ourselves from having deep uncomfortable feelings by tightening muscles. Layers of tension develop starting at an early age.
The two types influence each other and are related to each other. Mechanical tension can usually easily be relaxed with a few sessions of massage. Emotional tension usually requires a series of regular massage sessions coming 2x a week for a few years or even more to break through.
Some causes of mechanical tension include:
Trauma, injuries, operations
Bad posture and physical habits like sitting for too long at the desk and on computers
Wearing high heels, sitting cross-legged.
Environmental factors such as standing on concrete, constant noise, poor lighting, pollution
Some causes of emotional tension include:
Repression of emotions at an early age in childhood
Ignoring or being unaware of your feelings at any given moment
Working in unfulfilling jobs or staying in unfulfilling relationships
Having very stressful situations such as divorce, death in the family, sick family members, moving, changing jobs etc.
Mechanical tension usually causes emotional tension. Emotional tension usually causes physical tension. Tension affects most every disease or condition of ill health. It cause pain and fatigue. A muscle held in chronic tension uses up energy and leads to muscle and over all fatigue. It restricts the freedom of movement. It reduces the ability to strengthen a muscle. It reduces your ability to breath deeply and efficiently.
Often there is so much tension it results in a lack of feeling in an area. Without an awareness of feeling you are more prone to injuries and disease.
Excessive tension can lead to many different diseases and conditions. It can cause pain in the muscle tissues and constrict the flow of blood and nutrients which are needed for just normal metabolism. Muscles can contract around blood vessels restricting the flow and resulting in poor circulation. A tense muscle also uses more energy and can lead to feeling fatigued. People who are tense often also take shallow breaths because the breathing mechanisms are restricted thus creating more tension. So it all becomes a viscous circle. When you are tense it can also cause a cascading effect of emotions such as anxiety and depression. It interferes with the ability to feel which is central to all aspects of life.
Getting regular massage can help alleviate mechanical and physical tension and help maintain a proper balance in the body thereby creating a healthier place to live.