Some of us have never had a massage. Yes, honestly. Some for very good reasons. But often because you may feel unsure, apprehensive or a little anxious at the prospect. So the beginning of a new year feels like a good time to address some of those concerns, especially because you won’t be the only one who has them.
- My massage therapist will be secretly judging me for the size I am and thinking I’m overweight and out of shape.
This is a huge issue for lots of us. It can be a really big thing to turn up to have a treatment with someone you’ve never met before and then within 15 minutes of meeting them they’re asking you to get undressed and lie under a blanket on a massage couch before working on your back, neck, shoulders, arms and legs. Put like that its easy to understand why it can be a daunting prospect! You might be worried about them exposing your cellulite or areas of your body that you don’t feel comfortable with.
I have been a massage therapist for 12 years and in the hundreds, if not thousands, of people I have treated I can’t remember anything about the appearance of their physical bodies. I always remember what we talk about, what you’re like a person, those things you tell me about your family, your life, your hopes, your concerns, the laughs, the stories – both happy and sad. I remember you. And I know I can speak for all those with the same vocation. When we are focusing on your massage, we don’t think about your size or your shape, whether you have cellulite or haven’t shaved your legs. It couldn’t matter less and I promise you, WE. DON’T. EVEN. NOTICE. IT. We simply want to help you feel better so you can stop worrying about anything else.
- I hate feeling oily and greasy for the rest of the day.
You’ve had a massage and as lovely as it was, you now have the rest of your day to get through and you don’t like the feeling of the oils still being on your skin. Do you know what? You don’t have to have a massage with oils! We appreciate that not everybody likes the same kind of massage, which is why there are so many to choose from. A chat with your therapist to explain what you do and don’t like will ensure you have the right massage for you. And all can be specifically tailored for you too.
We often use a massage wax instead of oils in a treatment. It will still feel good and will allow us to work effectively but won’t leave you with an oil residue afterwards. Oils, especially natural essential oils, are incredibly beneficial but they won’t be for everybody and that’s okay. Your massage should be about what makes you feel comfortable.
Of course there is always the option of a massage without any oils at all! And one that you don’t even have to get undressed for! Tui Na massage doesn’t involve any oils, you simply need to wear loose comfortable cotton clothing and your therapist uses deep massage techniques and acupressure points. An effective massage but with minimum effort from you and with absolutely no oils or wax on your skin.
- I don’t want to lie there in pain while they hurt me for an hour.
Not all massages hurt and they should never be outside of your pain threshold. It isn’t about causing pain and discomfort for the sake of it – I promise we’re not masochists!
Admittedly, there are some massages which are probably going to feel a little painful but only because you may have an injury or especially tight area of muscle that need effective treatment to allow it to heal, repair and work normally again. A thorough and effective sports massage will get to the root of the issue and enable you to move without pain, but there may be some discomfort involved in the healing process. But only in the short-term and only for the good!
But it’s your choice as to whether you are happy to have this. A consultation or informal chat with your therapist before booking will ensure that they will use the most appropriate pressure for you during your massage.
Clinical Aromatherapy, Lymphatic Drainage and Hot Stone are always the most gentle, with Swedish and Deep Tissue using a deeper pressure and Sports and Tui Na being the most vigorous and effective for muscular issues and injury rehabilitation.
- What if my massage therapist does something I don’t like?
This is a really important one. We’ve treated lots of people who have been incredibly apprehensive about trying a massage because they’ve previously had a bad experience where it’s either left them in pain or feeling extremely uncomfortable and embarrassed. This should never happen and any professionally qualified and experienced therapist should always make sure you are comfortable and relaxed at all times. If you have any doubts, don’t do it.
If you are feeling apprehensive and are looking for the right therapist whom you can trust and feel relaxed with, have a chat to them first and explain their concerns. This is one of the reasons why we always take time to chat to every person before they have their treatment with us. We need to understand how you are feeling, if there are any concerns that we need to take into consideration and how best to treat you.
So it’s always okay to speak up.
But the most important thing you can do is choose a therapist you trust to be professional, respectful and give you the best massage for you. And relax!