In addition to relaxation, Swedish massage provides many health benefits. The techniques used during the massage facilitate blood flow through congested areas, allowing for improved circulation and flushing out of muscle toxins and metabolic waste. Gentle pressure is applied to the body to manipulate the muscle tissue. Both long gliding strokes and circular movements are used to apply pressure in the direction of blood flow to the heart, leading to better body functioning and lower blood pressure. Massage techniques may also include kneading of the muscle tissue and stretches to increase range of motion. Swedish massage is best known for relaxation, decreasing the unhealthy amounts of stress hormones that build up in the body in response to deadlines, relationships, and more. The various techniques used in this type of massage trigger changes in the brain’s chemistry, resulting in reduced stress and feelings of overall well-being. A quiet, peaceful environment is created for the client through dim lighting, soft music, and gentle pressure.