What should I expect at my first massage therapy visit?

Please show up early to fill out the health history form. Afterwards your therapist will ask you questions to find out what you would like to have worked on. We’ll also ask about any conditions which need to be considered, and ensure that massage is appropriate for you.

What are the benefits of massage?

Massage has many functions:

  • Massage relieves tension.
  • Massage relaxes and relieves muscle spasms.
  • Massage improves muscle tone.
  • Massage stretches connective tissue, preventing and loosening adhesions.
  • Massage following injury to ligaments and tendons, relieves pain and facilitates movement.
  • Massage dilates the blood vessels, improving blood circulation and healing.
  • Massage stimulates lymph circulation and promotes elimination of wastes and toxins.
  • Massage promotes faster recovery of muscles, and helps in building muscles after workouts. (Muscle building occurs only during recovery – workouts actually break down muscle tissue, which is then built back up during recovery)
  • Massage helps to reduce edema of the extremities.
  • Massage assists digestion.
  • Massage improves the circulation and nutrition of joints, it helps lessen inflammation and swelling in joints.
  • Massage promotes release of natural endorphins.
  • Massage helps to break up and loosen subcutaneous scar tissue.
  • Massage can increase blood cell counts (both red and white cells).
  • Massage improves skin tone and texture.
  • Massage promotes relaxation and can lower blood pressure.

Do I need to remove my clothes?

Massage is usually given while you are completely unclothed. Massage therapists are trained in draping to both keep your body warm and provide modesty. All massage therapists understand that modesty and comfort levels vary from person to person. You may choose to wear underwear,a swim suit bottom, or nothing at all. This is YOUR massage …you should feel as comfortable as possible.

What about talking during the massage?

In general, talking is discouraged, as it distracts from the relaxation of the massage. However, please feel free to give feedback as to pressure (lighter or deeper), painful areas, ticklish areas or areas that are especially relaxing.

How can I prepare for my appointment?

  1. Show up on time. If you need to cancel, please give us at least 24 hours notice. Please be considerate of my time and of the time for clients who follow your massage.
  2. Wear loose, comfortable clothing, so that the therapist will be able to assess you easier. If you are modest and want to wear undergarments or a swimsuit bottom, please bring those.
  3. Remove all jewelry and tie long hair back with a clip or a band.
  4. Practice basic hygiene. Shower the day of your appointment, wear deodorant, and if your feet are being worked on, make sure they’re clean. If you were in our shoes, would you want to work on someone who needs a shower?
  5. Please do not wear scents such as perfume, after-shave, fancy soaps or body spray. Many people get migraines from scents. Not only may massage therapists be sensitive to scents, but any scent may be left behind on the massage table and affect the next client to get a massage.

What’s a knot? How does massage get rid of them?

Knots are often tense muscles. Other times they’re adhesions within fascia (tissue surrounding muscle) or the muscle itself. Sometimes they’re trigger points. All of these forms of knots can be removed with massage, usually repeated visits. However a lot depends on how you use your body, your posture, even how you sleep.

Is massage for pampering or does it actually have health effects?

Both. Massage feels great, especially when relieving those “knots” mentioned above. Many people think of massage as being mainly for relaxation. However, massage therapists have a lot of education in anatomy and pathology. Massage is very healthy and healing for many conditions, and is health-promoting even if you’re perfectly healthy.