By Ian Chow, CERTIFIED Massage Therapist
This is my next part of the questions that I have encountered as a massage therapist and some questions that have crossed my mind as well as a receiver. Meanwhile, on another side, there is another list of questions that one may have “What if…….?” Or simply just click here to read about other massage related topics that I write about.
Should I go for massage regularly?
Massage is definitely not just meant as birthday gift, pay day reward or a bonus gift. It is a way to maintain well being of your body. With a good massage, it brings a lot of benefit to the body and I do believe it does maintain good mental health too.
As for how regular one should go, I do believe it all depend on his / her need that could be influenced or altered by his / her lifestyle, occupation, daily physical chores as well as financial. Hence, for the regularity, I do think it is subjective but I would like to recommend a minimum of 1 time per month.
Should I remove everything?
Firstly, you need to be aware of the brand or outlet that you visit and whether do they even permit you to do so in the first place. Secondly, it is also the question whether you are comfortable in doing so. If you are not, you can leave your underwear on.
Thirdly, it will depends on your therapist. Most therapists do not mind but some may be. Out of courtesy, if it is your first time with that brand or outlet or therapist, you may want to ask. A good therapist will know how to handle the draping well that regardless whether you are completely naked or not, you can rest assure you will not feel violated in any sense.
Should I allow my therapist to crack my neck?
I personally will not. To adjust the cervical portion of your spine is a skill and it needs experience. Not many therapist understand and know how to. I don’t want to take the risk. The degree of your neck rotation as well as how flexed/extended it is also determine which exact cervical will be manipulated. I certainly do not want the therapist to be adjusting non-problematic portion and decrease my neck’s range of motion due to wrong technique.
Should I take a bath before or after my session?
As long as I can or the facility is available, I will do it for hygiene purposes and also to make me feel more relaxed, easing me into the mood. Plus, I do it for the comfort of the therapist. I certainly don’t want the therapist to be distracted by my body odour or “sticky” body due to sweat.
As for after the massage, that is really up to you. Some don’t like their body to have that oily sensation hence they would want to. But for me, if the therapist does use quality essential oil, I would certainly want to wait for an hour or two before I take my shower to reap the benefit of the essential oils. However, if you do decide to take your bath after the massage, always start by wetting your feet first and bath with warm water. This is to give time for your body temperature to be regulated and no sudden change of pressure in your blood vessels; some articles say this may also prevent stroke and cardiac arrest.
Should I drink water after a massage?
Yes, fluid does help to flush out the toxin from your blood stream after the massage. Warm water will be good. Sometimes, you may get bonus by getting ginger tea, floral tea and some light snacks. Do try to avoid caffeinated drink or high sugar drink.
Should I change my therapist half way through the treatment if I am not satisfied?
Well, half jokingly, if you are the polite type, you could just bear with it and endure for the rest of the massage. But as a customer, you do have every right to ask for a change if you are not happy with the current one. As courtesy, prior to asking for a change, please do make sure you communicate with your therapist about what is irking you (is it the strength used, is it the music that is too loud, the pillow that smells, the aircond that is too cold etc). For me, what I have done before is stopping the massage half way, dress up and leave. I didn’t ask for a change cos there is no guarantee the next one that I get will be better and I certainly do not want to endure another round of torture (may be it is just me in my foul mood that day :P)