There are many self-care techniques you can try for relaxation or to soothe achy muscles and you don't need expensive equipment or lots of time to do so.
1. Stroking – Stroke your right shoulder with your left hand, keeping hand relaxed and moulded to your body shape. Start at the base of the skull, stroke all the way down the side of your neck, shoulder, arm and right off the fingertips. Repeat 3 to 4 times. Then stroke the left shoulder and arm in the same way with your right hand.
2. Kneading – Using your left hand to massage your right shoulder, squeeze and release the muscle on top of the shoulder and down the upper arm. You can support the working hand at the elbow with your right hand. Do the same on the other shoulder and arm, using the other hand.
3. Hacking the shoulders – Make a loose fist with your left hand, and keeping your wrist floppy, gently tap the trapezium muscle at the top of your right shoulder. Repeat on the other side changing hands.
4. Neck squeeze – Using one hand grasp the back of the neck between the heel of your hand and the fingers and gently squeeze. Work up and down the neck.
5. Neck circles – Using three fingers of each hand on either side of the back of your neck, make small circles pressing with your fingertips moving the skin over the muscles at the side of your neck. Work up and down the neck.
6. Base of skull and head – Continue the same little circles around the base of the skull. Then do the same over the whole of the head using all your fingers, pressing so that the skin moves over the skull to ease tension there.
7. Temple rotations – Squeeze at the temples with the heels of both hands, and make large, slow circular movements.