Getting The Most Out of Your Massage

Hygiene
Seems simple enough. This is not just for the benefit of your therapist, but yourself as well. You will be more comfortable if your body is clean. While you don’t have to bathe immediately before a massage, make sure you are thorough when you do bathe. Remember, body odor doesn’t just belong to the arm pits.

Don’t rush
Leave yourself enough time to get to and from your massage. Fighting traffic and rushing to get to your massage and rushing back does not lend itself to a relaxing experience. Getting to your massage a couple of minutes early lets you start the relaxation process before you are even on the table. In addition, take a little “me time” after the massage.

Inform your therapist
It’s important that you are open and honest with your therapist about the condition of your body and health. There certain conditions and situations where a massage could actually be harmful. Tell your therapist about any injuries, sickness, infection, or other medical issues. Pregnant? Be sure to let your therapist know and how far along you are. As well as any medications, supplements and herbs you are taking.

Talk about your concerns or questions
Talk to your therapist about what you need and are expecting from the massage experience. If there are certain parts your body you want given special attention, discuss it with your therapist. Don’t be afraid to ask about terms or modalities with which you are not familiar. 

Breathe
Breathing is involuntary, but that doesn’t mean we don’t need to think about it and even practice it. Deep, deliberate breathing is essential to moving into a relaxed state. Before you get on the table, take a couple of slow, deep breaths and feel yourself begin to relax. Is your mind racing while you’re on the table or are you having trouble relaxing into the massage? Breathe.

Turn off your phone and your mind will follow
In this day and age the quickest way to turn off the stress of the day is to turn off our phones. And off means off. Nothing will pull you out of a deep state of relaxation quicker than your phone vibrating from an incoming call or text. 

Don’t be embarrassed
As you relax, your body may respond in ways that might be embarrassing under normal circumstances. People sometimes fall asleep, drool, or pass gas as their body relaxes. Men sometimes get involuntary erections. Your therapist is well aware of this and should not be put off by any of it. Don’t let it get in the way of your relaxation. Remember, breathe.

Get massages on a regular basis
Going once a year or so for a massage can be a fantastic relaxing experience, but it does little to help improve your health and well-being long term. Those neck and shoulder issues you want addressed are not going to be fixed in a single session. Massage should be part of your personal healthcare plan. A massage every 4 to 6 weeks not only will help improve your overall health, but developing a relationship with a massage therapist who knows your needs will increase the effectiveness of your sessions.