Where will my massage or bodywork session take place?
Your massage or bodywork session will take place in a warm, comfortable, quiet room. A robe is provided for you should you need to leave the room to use the restroom at any time during your session. We ask that you please try to use the restroom before your session so that you can be more comfortable during your session. Soft music may be played to help you relax. You will lie on a table especially designed for your comfort.
Are there any medical conditions that would make massage or bodywork inadvisable?
Yes! That's why it's imperative that before you begin your session, you have filled out the intake form that the therapist emailed to you. The practitioner asks general health questions and it is really important that you fully complete your intake form. We understand the intake form can be lengthy and you will only have to fill out the intake form once. Occasionally, the therapist may ask you to update your intake form which only has a few questions to make sure nothing has changed or if there is anything your practitioner needs to be notified of. It is very important that you inform the practitioner of any health problems or medications you are taking. If you are under a doctor's care, it is strongly advised that you receive a written recommendation for massage or bodywork prior to any session. Depending on the condition, approval from your doctor may be required and your session may have to be rescheduled at a later time.
INTAKE FORM: I don't need to tell my massage therapist about my medical history. The therapist doesn't need to know this!
Wrong! Your therapist needs to know about any conditions that might be contraindicated with the massage. This includes some forms of disease, medications, and surgeries. If you’re not sure if massage is right for you, check with your doctor. You can also ask one of the Massage Therapists here, but we aren’t going to be able to guarantee an answer. Think about it... what if you had a bone fracture but thought it was muscle related? Maybe you are on a blood thinner medication and have blood clots? Did you know blood clots could possibly be dislodged during a massage and possibly kill you? Maybe you have osteoporosis and the wrong pressure could break bones. Did you forget to tell your therapist about the poison ivy on your left leg, sunburn (ouch), or other skin condition that could be contagious to the therapist and the other clients the therapist works with?
So YES, you must complete your intake form before the therapist has a session with you.
What are the benefits of massage and bodywork?
Massage and bodywork can help release chronic muscular tension and pain, improve circulation, increase joint flexibility, reduce mental and physical fatigue and stress, promote faster healing of injured muscular tissue, improve posture, and reduce blood pressure. Massage and bodywork are also known to promote better sleep, improve concentration, reduce anxiety, and create an overall sense of well-being.
Must I be completely undressed?
Most massage and bodywork techniques are traditionally performed with the client unclothed, however, it is entirely up to you what you want to wear. You should undress to your level of comfort. You will be properly draped during the entire session. Your massage therapist will leave the room to give you privacy as you get yourself comfortable. Your massage therapist will knock on the door and ask if you are ready before entering to make sure you are under the covers and ready for your massage session to begin. You may take your clothes off completely or remain partially clothed. Either way, your massage therapist only uncovers areas they need to work on one at a time while the other areas of your body are securely draped with the sheets.
Here are some quick tips to remember before your massage.
If you want a massage with full clothes on, wear clothes that are easy to manage like cotton shirt or tank top, yoga pants, sweat pants, or shorts. Avoid wearing clothes made from thick fabrics or materials as they may also cause you discomfort and skin irritation.
Get on the massage table and make sure you are under the sheets before your massage therapist comes into the room.
You can always dress down to your comfort level. As mentioned, you are free to wear anything you want but also consider massage therapists’ position. They should be able to work on your body as comfortably as possible as well.
Women/Men may want to keep their bottom underwear on. Women may want to consider taking their bra to allow the therapist better access to your back , neck, and shoulder muscles for a more complete massage.
Women may want to consider not wearing any makeup if they wish to have a scalp or face massage.
Men and women with long hair could tie their hair up before laying down on the massage table.
You will want to remove any jewelry and secure them before your session. These items tend to get in the way of movements and strokes sometimes. We also suggest removing any earrings and glasses also.
Therapeutic Massage: This is a massage session where we focus on the area you having issues or pain. For example, if you are visiting us for a neck and shoulder issue, there is no need to undress by removing your shorts/pants, or socks.
Will the practitioner be present when I disrobe?
The practitioner will leave the room while you undress and take off your shoes. Next, you will relax onto the table, lie on your back underneath the covers, and we ask that you please do not lay your head on the headrest.
Will I be covered during the session?
You will be properly draped at all times to keep you warm and comfortable. Only the area being worked on will be exposed. Please let us know if you are too hot/cold if you would like relaxing music played during your session if you have any issues with the lighting of the room, or anything else so we can address your comfort needs. If you do not prefer music to be played, we can play other soothing sounds such as rain, wind ambience, a peaceful waterfall, campfire, forest sounds, or a calming white noise.
What parts of my body will be massaged?
A typical full-body session may include work on your back, arms, legs, feet, hands, head, neck, and shoulders. Remember that this is your session, if you would prefer that we focus on a particular area, or if there is an area that you prefer not to be massaged, please let us know so that we can adjust our massage for you.
What will the massage or bodywork feel like?
A relaxing Swedish massage is often a baseline for clients. In a general Swedish massage, your session may start with broad, flowing strokes that will help calm your nervous system and relax exterior muscle tension. As your body becomes relaxed, the pressure will gradually be increased to relax specific areas and relieve areas of muscular tension. Often, a light oil or lotion is used to allow your muscles to be massaged without causing excessive friction to the skin. The oil we use is Jojoba oil which is non-allergenic, doesn't go rancid, and also helps hydrate your skin. You should communicate immediately if you feel any discomfort so that another approach may be taken. We use a scale from 1 to 3 (1 is the lightest pressure and 3 is the most pressure) to determine the pressure that you prefer. Although we always encourage minimal talking during a session, so that you may experience the full benefits of massage, your therapist will try his/her best to ask you about your pressure to a minimum. Massage and bodywork are most effective when your body is not resisting and contrary to what many clients believe, deep pressure (Deep Tissue) massage does not mean that we must use excessive pressure to have a wonderful massage.
Are there different kinds of massage and bodywork?
There are numerous types of massage and bodywork; various techniques utilize different strokes, including basic gliding strokes, rocking movement, posture and movement re-education, application of pressure to specific points, and more. We can discuss which methods may be most appropriate for you.
What should I do during the massage or bodywork session?
Prior to the massage, you should have completed any forms that the practitioner sent you. Please feel free to ask the practitioner any questions about the technique or the upcoming session. During the massage, make yourself comfortable. The practitioner will either gently move you or tell you what is needed throughout the session (such as lifting your arm). Many people just close their eyes and completely relax, communicating if/when they need more or less pressure, another blanket, or anything else relevant to the session. If you have any questions regarding the session or about the particular technique you are receiving, feel free to ask. The practitioner generally remains quiet during your session and only ask questions when necessary to make sure you are comfortable.
How will I feel after the massage or bodywork session?
Most people feel very relaxed. Some experience freedom from long-term aches and pains developed from tension or repetitive activity. After an initial period of feeling slowed down, people often experience increased energy, heightened awareness, and greater productivity that can last for days.
During the winter months, your massage therapist may offer you a nice hot tea to go home with. During the summer months, your massage may offer you cold water.
Swedish Massage. This is a gentle form of massage that uses long strokes, kneading, deep circular movements, vibration, and tapping to help relax and energize you. Swedish is for those who wish to relax and relieve stress, it may also improve circulation and lower blood pressure.
Deep Tissue Massage. Using slower, deeper strokes to target the underlying layers of muscle and connective tissue commonly helps with muscle damage from injuries and improves range of motion.
Sports Massage. This is similar to Swedish massage, but it’s geared toward people involved in sports activities to help prevent or treat injuries and can be used to prepare and invigorate the body before an event.
Trigger Point Massage. Focuses on areas of tight muscle fibers that can form in your muscles after injuries or overuse.
What is deep tissue massage?
Deep tissue massage is a massage technique that’s mainly used to treat musculoskeletal issues, such as strains and sports injuries. It involves applying sustained pressure using slow, deep strokes to target the inner layers of your muscles and connective tissues. This helps to break up scar tissue that forms following an injury and reduces tension in muscles and tissue.
It may also promote faster healing by increasing blood flow and reducing inflammation.
Read on to learn more about deep tissue massage, including how it stacks up against Swedish massage and what to expect during a session. Click Here
Does massage release toxins? Is this a myth?
Without our definition of toxins, the answer would be NO.
However, with the clearly defined parameters of “excess”, the answer becomes YES…sort of. [the proper answer is “yes, that’s what the predominant theory is currently…and with a catch”].
When we massage the soft tissues of the body (muscles) we have the ability to release pockets of waste build-up. It’s almost like we burst a little package of highly concentrated “regular stuff” that causes an issue because it’s in excess.
When we think of these packages now, the way we should be visualizing them is as chemicals/compounds that are regular bi-products of energy production in the cell. All our cells in some way or another produce “waste” as a result of generating energy to fuel the assembly of proteins and other things the cell is designed to make! Normally our bodies are great at removing this waste (when we are happy, healthy, and peaceful). Just like any biological system though, things can go a little bit wrong, and when that happens these waste products accumulate.
It’s these little packets that are commonly referred to as toxins. And it’s these little packets that we, as practitioners of massage, can help your body clear out through manual disruption of muscle tissue. This is also where the “sort of” comes into play. Technically a massage is both toxifying and detoxifying.
Ultimately we view it as detoxifying because it aids the body in the removal of these excess concentrations of metabolic byproducts. However, massage is briefly increasing the “toxicity” of our body because it releases the contents of a toxic packet into our system.
Massage can get rid of cellulite?
No–if it did, we would be millionaires! However exercising and engaging in a fitness routine can reduce cellulite, and massage can help you recover from your workouts!
Am I supposed to drink water after a massage? Doesn't it flush toxins?
It’s not a must, however, a hydrated body is a happy body, and nice hydrated muscles tend to be healthier. So go ahead and drink some water, it’s good for you! You did also just spend about an hour on the table, likely mouth breathing for a bit, if not the whole thing (it’s okay; we don’t judge). You probably need to replenish your water. As far as toxins, well, you know the answer to that one.
Am I supposed to be quiet and not talk during my massage?
You should always say what you need to to your therapist to make sure you are comfortable with your massage. Let them know if you need more or less pressure. Let them know if anything feels too uncomfortable for you. If you need to chat to feel more at ease that’s fine too. If you don’t want to look or speak to another person during your session, that’s fine too. The session is for your benefit and on your dime so make sure you are comfortable and have good communication with your therapist. Communication is the KEY to a great massage!
Is massage only for sore muscles?
No. Massage can improve the range of motion in joints and help break down scar tissue. It is also helpful in reducing symptoms of stress, anxiety, PTSD, and depression.