Knowledge and an understanding of the human body and how it functions is the starting point of massage. The more I understand about how the body functions, what may interrupt this functioning -such as trauma and injury, the more I can use these skills and knowledge to advise you as my client.
It is important that we as a massage therapist understand the anatomy and physiology in detail, as we are working in direct contact with the body structures. It is also important that we have a full knowledge of diseases and disorders of the human so that we are aware of when and when not to treat a client and only operate within certain perimeters.
A good knowledge of the anatomy and physiology gives the massage therapist the confidence to understand how the body works, and how to work with the body as a health practitioner.
First, it’s important to know what structures you’re pushing on and whether or not you should be pushing on them. For example, a massage therapist should know where the kidneys or bones are located and not put any direct pressure or use a lot of percussion directly over them.
It’s important to know where all the different muscles and bones are in the body and what they do, which makes it easier to treat specific problems. If a client reports pain when performing a certain actions, it gives the therapist an idea of which muscles to palpate because the therapist should know which muscles are responsible for making that action happen.
Without this knowledge, it's impossible for the therapist to be effective.