Here are some massage basics every client should know before getting a massage.
Communicate– Too often I hear that people are unhappy with their massage experience. My advice, its your massage own it. Most of the time the complaints are things that could have been changed to make the client feel more comfortable. Clients must remember you are paying for a service in which you have certain standards and expectations- It is YOUR massage not the therapist’s massage! If the music is too loud or the room is too hot/cold, let your therapist know. If you want the lights to be dimmer or you want the pressure of the massage adjusted more than once throughout the massage, let your therapist know. We therapists have not a clue if something hurts or feels good to you. We are trained to use techniques that generally feel good but just because it feels good on most people doesn’t mean you may like it. You have to participate in making your massage a perfect massage for you. If you find that your therapist isn’t interested in meeting your needs, within reason, you can end the massage and find another therapist. Being comfortable during your massage is part of the wellness process. That being said, also keep in mind that your massage therapist is human and not a robot, he or she may need to pause to take a sip of water and may need to cough like any other person. Use your better judgement and have realistic expectations of your therapist.
If your therapist is offended by your polite yet direct request and you feel like your needs are not being met. Kindly end the session, you may say ” I am not sure you can provide what I am looking for” and look for another massage therapist, simple as that.
Illness and Massage-there is an endless list of ways in which massage can help several illnesses. But there are also many illnesses. Which are contraindicated (not recommended.) Please communicate any and all illnesses, allergies and past injury(s). If you or your therapist are unsure about if you should receive a massage err on the side of caution and check with your doctor before getting a massage. It’s better to be safe.
Injury and massage– if you have a current or recovering injury let your therapist know. There is a chance that your therapist could make your injury worse by not knowing specific details about your injury. If you are an athletic type and have a slight muscle strain that is reoccurring, massage may help you feel better. But, the number one solution to pain is rest. There is a common abbreviation that is often referenced R.I.C.E. (rest, ice, compress and elevate) use this especially with injures that cause swelling and inflammation. If you have some questions as to the seriousness of your injury please consult with a qualified medical professional. Massage therapist are trained to relax your muscles and alleviate pain. We have no way of knowing the severity of an injury.
The best advice I can give you is “if you think it say it” the more you communicate to your therapist the better they are able to provide you the massage you were expecting. It’s your massage!
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