Greetings everyone. Today I am going to address some of the most commonly asked questions I get about massage therapy. With all the different styles of massage therapy now available along with some confusion about just what a massage therapist can and can not do, I thought I would answer some of the more typical questions in the hope that it makes your choosing a massage therapist a little easier. Massage therapy continues to be among Australia’s most popular natural therapies and is often sought out before many other types of therapy.
Online schools offering massage therapy courses will agree that the increase in the number of massage therapy students reflects the rise in the demand for massage services. Sadly there is still the mis-perception that massage therapy is a luxury. This really is not the case. Sure, some of the high end retreats and day spas may be charging you like a wounded bull and providing very “fluffy” massages and these really are just feel good “fluffies”, but most serious and qualified massage therapists offer you a great way to manage stress and pain, prevent poor well being and increase vitality that is drug free and healthy! Massage therapy is really something most modern day people need to stay on top of busy schedules and work stresses. Some lucky employees even get massages provided to them in the work place!
Most Commonly Asked Massage Therapy Questions
- How often should I come for massage? – The best results obtained from massage therapy occur when massage therapy is done regularly. How regularly is dependent upon what your receiving massage therapy for. For general well being and relaxation I recommend 1-2 times per month. Those clients coming for stress management and reduction I recommend 1-2 times weekly so as to prevent the tension build up from becoming more deep seated in the tissues. For those clients wanting to manage pain I generally go with a program such as 1-2 times weekly for the first 1-3 weeks, sometimes more if needed, followed by once weekly thereafter until we can reduce back to about once fortnightly. This usually allows the problem to be diminished and managed without great ongoing costs to the client.
- Should I wear my undies or not? – This is a matter of personal choice for the client. Either way, I will keep you covered at all times. Rest assured.
- How long is a massage therapy Session? – This varies from therapist to therapist a little but generally you will find 3 main time frames; 1 hour, 1/2 hour and full body which can be anything up to 2 hours. Personally I do 1 hour and 1/2 sessions. This is ample for most people and is enough time to get the job done thoroughly for maximum benefit.
- What kind of oils do you use? – There are all kinds of oils suitable for massage therapy such as almond oil, seed oils etc. Personally I use high grade olive oil as my main carrier oil . I do this as it is particularly good for the skin and is anti-inflammatory. Olive oil also has little known allergic responses unlike nut oils and seed oils can. I generally refrain from using essential oils as well as some of these can cause reactions to the skin and can be contra-indicated to some people’s current medical status.
- How soon will I see results? – Generally most people feel pretty good after their first session but for longer term results, particularly if you have a chronic pain problem or are looking to manage stress, it can take a few sessions to notice a more permanent change. Again, massage therapy works best when done regularly.
- Is a massage always helpful? – Most of the time yes. However there are some medical conditions that contra-indicate to massage therapy so it is vitally important that you answer the pre-therapy questionnaire with the therapist HONESTLY and THOROUGHLY so as to prevent anything untoward. Massage therapy is not recommended for immediately after a soft tissue tear or strain as it can aggravate the problem.
- How will I feel afterwards? – Generally most people feel very relaxed and happy after their session. Generally in the days to follow, most people feel quite bright and energized as well. Sometimes you can feel a little “foggy” and thirsty too. This is because toxins are liberated and moved out of the tissues and this requires the body to eliminate them. It is good practice to go home, rest a little while and drink plenty of fresh water to aid this process. Occasionally some people pull up a little sore, particularly if you have had some deeper work done. This is not all that common but it is similar to the feeling after a solid work out at the gym. Again this is part of the elimination process and will pass after a couple of days, if not, then contact your therapist.
- The more it hurts the better the result right? – Not really. You will notice when I describe my massage style it says; “not always firm but not always gentle”. Generally if the pressure is making you tense up tight and hold your breath, then it’s failing to do it’s job, it’s just straight out hurting you! Personally I have learned to gauge a clients threshold well. I always teach them to breath during the massage and especially during periods of release and pressure point work. This tells me clearly just how much pressure to use so as not to hurt but still get in and release the problem. This generally prevents soreness for the client as well I find.
Well they’re the main culprits! Of course I get asked all kinds of questions but these are the main ones just about everyone asks me. Massage therapy is a very effective natural method of well being management and therapy and is NOT a luxury item folks, it is something you should consider as part of your well being programmes and general health care plan. It’ll do more good for you than spending your money in the pub!
Stay well, until next time.
Craig Hitchens – Natural Health Specialist
Reference Source: My own clinical experience.
Alternative & Natural Health Disclaimer:
The information contained in this article is accurate at the time of posting but may change thereafter. The information provided on the various natural health subjects from this website of www.craighitchenstherapies.com is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as any form of medical advice. The information in the article this disclaimer is linked from is not meant to treat, diagnose, prescribe or cure any ailment. Always check with your health professional before taking any products or following any advice that you believe may conflict with other forms of health care. Always consult your health care professional before you start, stop or change anything that has been previously prescribed. Certain herbs and holistic remedies are unsuitable to take if you are pregnant or nursing and must always be cleared by your health professional before use.