Things to keep in mind as you schedule your first massage

Posted by Paige Deiner on Thursday, September 25, 2014 Under: Massage
Massage therapists see countless people throughout the week. Every body is different. Every person unique. And while you may be worried about whether or not you missed a spot shaving the back of your leg – the massage therapist is focused on how your leg feels.  She’s feeling for tight spots in muscles. She’s watching you for your response to increased pressure and she’s listening to your breathing to see if you are relaxing or tensing as she works into muscles.

She is focused on how your body feels, not how it looks.  Her goal is for you to relax so that she can work as deeply as she needs to without causing pain. For many people though, there is a sense of vulnerability as they get undressed for a massage – a worry or a fear that the therapist may judge them. In that moment people’s own insecurities about body image may come forth and they may have trouble feeling at ease on the massage table.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Massage therapists really have seen every body type imaginable, and in all honestly, they don’t care if you are fat, thin, tattooed, hairy, hairless, etc.
  •  Massage therapists are there to help you, and they can’t do their job well if you don’t relax. So undress to your comfort level- if that means you want to keep your shirt on, pants on or underwear on cool. They want you to feel comfortable.  On the flip-side if you want to be totally undressed great.
  •  Massage therapists are governed by rules that do not let them expose you. They are very conscious of how they un-drape and they have spent hours in school learning how to drape and un-drape arms, legs and backs, etc. so that no private parts are exposed.  (In that vein, respect that the therapist is a professional and please don’t lie down naked on top of the sheet. It raises the therapist’s blood pressure and by law they are unable to perform a massage until you are not exposed.)
  • Every massage therapist is different. Each one has their own style and their own preferences – some are heavy handed and like to work deep into muscles, others have a lighter touch. Some like massages to be rhythmic and wave-like, others like to focus on trouble areas and have a more area-focused approach. Tell your massage therapist, not only your goals when you start the session, but also how much pressure you want and what kind of massage you are looking for.
  •  Also, massage therapists are not mind readers (though they try to be). Let them know if something isn’t working for you so they can change it. If you are hot or cold or there is too much or not enough pressure tell them. The worse thing that you can do is spend an hour on a table miserable and not let the massage therapist know.
  •  No pain, no gain is not always the way to go with massage therapy. If something hurts let the therapist know. Often there is another approach that will be just as effective and won’t hurt.  If there isn’t another approach, the therapist can help you breathe through that area to lessen the discomfort or can decide to work on that spot at a different time.
  •  Develop a relationship with your therapist. Get massages with enough frequency that the therapist can build a program for you, so that she can determine your likes and dislikes and design a massage that will be comfortable for you and effective in guiding you toward your long-term goals.  For many people this is a massage every two weeks or once a month.  Other people may need to come more frequently in the beginning to work out problem areas and then drop off to once every two weeks or once a month after the initial problem has been resolved.  

To learn more about massage therapy or to schedule a massage call 302-930-3055.

In : Massage 

Tags: draping  first time massage  massage expectations  massage pain  massage therapy 
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Living Life of Adventure, One Breath at a Time

Paige Deiner My life is a wild carpet ride full of unique experiences and one of a kind adventures. I sometimes find myself holding onto the tassels, rather than sitting squarely in the middle of my "magic carpet" - but so far I haven't fallen off and I'm loving the ride. I am a Licensed Massage Therapist and a Yoga Alliance 200 yoga instructor. I have been a Reiki Master for 8 years, and have meditated since childhood. My daughter thinks I'm a hippie, I think I am a very organized dreamer. The truth may be somewhere in the middle. I would probably be a vegetarian but I fear mutiny... But I do try my best to practice what I preach. I yoga everyday and meditate nightly. I am lucky enough to have a fantastic Reiki partner so I receive some universal wisdom each Tuesday. And I am an avid, nerdy reader. I clean to books on tape, and usually read about two non-fiction and one fiction book a week.