During the session, the therapist will utilise the draping to expose only those parts of the body to which treatment is being applied. A study conducted by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, and published in The New York Times, found that volunteers who received a minute Swedish massage experienced significant decreases in levels of the stress hormone cortisol, as well as arginine vasopressin-a hormone that can lead to increases in cortisol. It is most commonly used for relaxation and improving well-being. Athletes, sports people and dancers include massage in their training schedules to aid recovery and to prevent or treat soft tissue injuries. Menu Skip to content. The therapist will sense responses but will also ask the client about the strength of their touch.