What are the benefits of massage and bodywork?
Massage therapy can do wonders! Depending on the focus of the session, bodywork can: relieve pain, reduce stress and tension, renew energy, increase flexibility and mobility, facilitate postural alignment, help heal wounds (physical, emotional, psychological), strengthen the immune system, improve circulation, help eliminate toxins, improve sports performance, enhance the benefits of other health care providers (surgeons, chiropractors, physical therapist, personal trainers) and helps in the maintenance of health, vitality and well-being.
What should I expect the first visit?
We ask that you complete basic health history and informed consent forms prior to your massage. After reviewing your information with you, the therapist may perform certain assessments and testing to evaluate your condition. Your therapist will ask you general questions to establish what areas you would like worked and those you would not, if there are any areas of concern, and to determine which techniques are most appropriate for you.
What should I wear during the massage?
Depending on the area addressed and primary technique your therapist uses, you may or may not need to undress. For a full body massage, most people either undress completely or choose to leave on undergarments. Your massage therapist will give you privacy to undress, and you will be covered with a sheet and/or blanket at all times except the area being addressed.
How will I feel after the massage therapy treatment?
After a wellness massage, most people feel very relaxed. After an initial period of feeling slowed down, people often experience increased energy, heightened awareness, and greater clarity and productivity which can last for days. Since toxins can be released from soft tissues during a massage, it is recommended you drink plenty of water following your massage.
When addressing specific issues, there is more likelihood of experiencing soreness or tenderness, similar to a day after a vigorous workout. We know that you need to use your body after the treatment, so our therapists abide by the "Superficial-Deep-Superficial" principle of massage: working the outermost layers of tissue and then progressively discovering deep-seated sources of pain and tension. This, in addition to your feedback, allows us to greatly minimize post-treatment tenderness.
Who can receive massage? What if I have _____________?
Massage is appropriate for all ages and sizes! We work with kids and teens (with signed parental consent), elders, those with limited or no mobility, and everyone in between. There are a few circumstances or conditions under which it is not advisable to receive massage. If you have a cold or otherwise compromised immune system, are experiencing a communicable skin condition, or are under the influence of alcohol, we will need to postpone your appointment. Most conditions simply require treatment modifications; be sure to communicate with your therapist to ensure appropriate care.
How many sessions will I need to see improvement? How often should I get one?
These questions boil down to setting intentions and defining goals, which you and your therapist will discuss prior to each treatment. Typically, you can expect the number and frequency of massage sessions to be proportional to the severity and duration of the issue. In other words, a nasty injury sustained many years ago will require more work than a slight ache that you noticed yesterday. We like to think that, if you experiencing outright pain or discomfort, you should notice some improvement within 2-3 sessions. If there is no change, we will be happy to discuss your options and possibly point you in the direction of a good referral. Our top priority is your health and well-being, even if it's outside our office.
For stress management or physical maintenance, most people are comfortable with a once-a-month visit.
Should I talk or be quiet during the massage?
Some people crave peace and quiet, others need to blow off some steam; we follow your lead. Most people, especially the first time around, start off chatty and gently slip into "massage mode". Whether you have questions about a certain technique or want to know if it's going to rain tomorrow, know that you can ask questions at any time during your appointment.
Music - is it all harps and whale calls?
Studies have shown that music with less than 60 BPM (beats per minute) has a sedative effect on our nervous system, thereby enhancing your massage experience. We have a wide range of soothing music and "white noise", and you are more than welcome to make your preferences known -- even if it's no music at all!
What is Aromatherapy?
The therapeutic application or use of aromatic substances to address emotional, physical, and spiritual concerns.