What to expect from your massage.
On your first visit for a massage, you will be asked to filled out an information form. This is important to ensure that your therapist is aware of any conditions that you may have. There are some conditions where massage may not be the best treatment and it is important to have an open line of communication with your therapist.
Your massage takes place in a closed room. You will normally partially undress down to undergarments and are given a towel to place over yourself. It is expected that underwear will be kept on at all times. In cases of females wearing a bra, it is entirely left to their choice whether to leave on or remove.You will be draped in a towel and only the area being worked on will be exposed.
Oil is used directly on the skin. The exception to this is with ‘Corporate Massage’ whereby the client will remain clothed and is not always in a private space. Most massage will take place on a massage table lying down, but in some cases the massage takes place whilst you are seated on a massage chair. Massage therapy can last from 30 minutes to 90 minutes hours depending on what is needed.
Getting the most out of your massage
Learn what steps – before, during and after massage – will give the most benefit for a comfortable and restoring experience. A relaxing massage therapy session is part client and part practitioner. The massage therapist uses skilled techniques to help muscles and tissues relax. The client of massage can use simple steps and guidelines to ensure a relaxing experience and help the benefits last longer. First time and seasoned clients alike can benefit from these suggestions to prepare for, experience, and take care after, a massage.
Preparing for a Massage Appointment
Following these steps will ensure a relaxing experience during and after your massage:
- Get plenty of fluids in the 24 hours leading up to your massage
- Shaving the same day of a massage can lead to razor burn or a rash; avoid shaving legs prior to a massage
- Shower the same day of the massage or as close to the appointment as possible – if you have been working out of doors or exercising the sweat and dirt can become mixed in with massage oils and creams and make for an exfoliating or gritty experience
- Plan to arrive a few minutes early to complete any paperwork and to avoid traffic.
- Disclose any health conditions to the massage therapist before your session
What to do During the Massage
For some clients receiving a massage is such a relaxing experience that they will fall asleep within minutes. Others have a harder time winding down for their massage. There is no right or wrong way to enjoy a massage but here are some suggestions to relax during your session:
- Try following your breathing for a few minutes: breathe in, breathe out
- Focus on listening to the music playing
- Don’t force relaxation – if you are in a talkative mood and your mind won’t slow down feel free to chat during your massage. You may actually relax more if you “go with the flow” and talk through your day and things on your mind than keeping quiet
- Be sure to communicate clearly with your massage practitioner during the session on comfort level, room temperature and music. You don’t need to “endure” a massage experience that is unpleasant so speak up if the pressure is too deep or you’re feeling cold.
To help the benefits of your massage last longer try these guidelines:
- Make sure you drink plenty of water after a massage session to help eliminate toxins from the body.
- Keep in mind any advice your practitioner has given you to keep up the benefits between sessions (i.e. stretches, relaxation methods or posture awareness)
- Take things easy for a couple of hours after your massage to enjoy longer benefits
- Try taking a warm bath a day or two after your massage to keep the body/mind relaxed and stop the body tightening up again; it may help to add a hand full of lectric soda crystals to the bath water.
- Maintain regular massage appointments to keep stress and tight muscles at manageable levels