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Your massage session may june 2009


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Your massage session may june 2009

  1. 1. fingertips for the client By Laurie ChanCe Smith Note to massage therapists: each issue of Massage & Bodywork coNtaiNs the columN fiNgertips for the clieNt, which is targeted to clieNts. this columN is available oNliNe at as a priNtable file. priNt the faciNg page, attach your busiNess card, aNd seNd it home with clieNts, courtesy of associated bodywork & massage professioNals. 36 massage & bodywork may/june 2009
  2. 2. Your Massage session Vocalize Your Needs When a massage therapist’s hands During the session, vocalize your touch the skin, the effect reaches needs as they arise. If the room is down to the muscles and ligaments, too warm or cold, say so. Herbal and and then positively influences the aromatherapeutic oils add healing circulatory, lymphatic, and nervous benefits to massage. Tell your therapist systems. Healing touch, a sensitive if you are sensitive to an herb or style of communication, speaks safety essential oil, if you’d like him or her and comfort. “The beauty of massage to use more (or less) massage oil, or lies in it being such a simple, direct if you don’t care for an oil’s scent. form of human contact,” says Susan What if you feel pain during Mumford in The New Complete Guide massage? In Massage: Mind and Body to Massage (Penguin Group, 2006). Massage is a safe therapeutic art, (DK Publishing, 2003), Larry Costa says we must “distinguish between The written considered by many to be a vehicle for mental, physical, and emotional comfortable and uncomfortable pain.” When working on sensitive areas of and verbal health. People seek massage for myriad your body, the therapist will begin reasons—from simple relaxation to slowly then move toward deep-tissue information you addressing muscular injuries. An work. “You may experience some intuitive therapist is likely to pick up many clues about your needs from an discomfort to begin with, but this should diminish after a few minutes provide and the intake interview before the session, and even by the way you sit, talk, as the muscles relax,” Costa says. This is comfortable pain. “Pain that causes questions you and walk. The written and verbal you to wince, cry out, or tense up is information you provide and the probably not doing you any good.” ask are crucial questions you ask are also crucial for a Ask your therapist for less or more successful bodywork session. Mention particular issues you’d like to have pressure, depending on your needs. “The healing touch of massage for a successful addressed and feel free to ask about the techniques being used in your session. is one of the best gifts you can give your body,” writes Esme Floyd in bodywork Inform your therapist of short- or Body Massage (Carlton Books, 2004). long-term medical conditions. Massage Touch, a basic human impulse, session. is used cautiously, or not at all, in some soothes the body and relaxes the mind, situations. For example, massage is promoting physical and mental well- generally avoided when a person has being. Massage sessions provide a safe fever, open wounds, or certain skin space for you to relax, reflect, and feel disorders. People with long-term comfortable in your own skin. medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, or osteoporosis, should seek Laurie Chance smith is a Texas-based a doctor’s advice before massage. writer and photographer who works for national With medical supervision, a trained and international markets on a plethora of bodyworker often helps ease long-term topics. she can be reached at pain and stress, usually with gentle strokes and personalized techniques. for more information, visit 37