Bodywork vs. Massage: What’s the Difference?

Mindfulness meditation


Bodywork at Ha.Lé is a type of massage that focuses on addressing dysfunction and promoting tissue health. It takes a strong therapeutic approach to each session, working to nourish tissues, lengthen fascia, release tension, and promote ease of motion.  The main difference between Bodywork and Massage is the end goal of the appointment. Bodywork assesses the client’s needs for each session, and then works to address them. These include issues like chronic knee pain, a sudden crick in the neck, migraine headaches, sciatica, and plantar fasciitis.  Most bodywork sessions are whole body treatments unless more targeted focus is specifically warranted. Our bodies are very interconnected, and dysfunction in one part of the body can cause significant tension in a very different location in the body. Treating the whole body is a way to more effectively address dysfunction, and to help find the root causes of discomfort.  Massage, on the other hand, is a term more commonly used to describe sessions focused on relaxation or as part of a spa-like experience. It is also a pleasant, enjoyable experience that helps relieve tension and stress, but does not necessarily include a treatment or therapeutic focus.  Bodywork uses rehabilitative principles to support health, reduce pain, and increase ease and range of motion. Massage is a broader category, and often used to describe sessions with less focus on specific health goals.


Ha.Lé Integrative is a holistic wellness practice, serving the greater Midtown area of Nashville, TN. Click here to learn about our services.

Schedule a 15 minute Consultation

Healthcare shouldn’t be confusing.

Get started with a free 15 minute consult.