My Practice

How to Have a Good Massage

There is absolutely nothing better in this world than to hear that someone enjoyed their massage. I’m not going to lie- it’s good feedback to hear. Recently, I was given what was probably the best feedback and compliment that I have ever received. And it got me thinking- why was this person so happy? My goal is to always be present during a session, to always pay attention to the person receiving the massage and how their body responds. But that can’t be the only reason that someone likes the work. That led me to think about this particular client and our relationship. From the beginning he has always been vocal about what he likes. If something feels particularly good, he tells me. If he needs more pressure on an area, he tells me. So, I remember those areas where he likes extra attention and what techniques I used, and I make sure I work those areas in that particular way in every session.

So, if you ask me what makes a good massage, I say the answer is you. The best thing you can do before, during, or after a session is to give feedback. I’m not looking for a pat on the back nor am I fishing for compliments. I truly need to know what you liked, or what you didn’t like and what you would like more of, or less of. I can’t read your mind. Sorry, but massage therapists are not super heroes nor or they some sort of mystical, empathic healer. There is no one massage session or set of techniques that works for everyone. Every session is different and based on what you need. And the more I know about what you need, the better I can provide it.

Don’t be afraid to say if you don’t like something or if what I’m doing isn’t working for you. The massage is not about me or my ego. I was a middle child who grew up in an all female household. Trust me when I tell you I have been conditioned to take the brutal truth. I view it as a learning experience; it’s all constructive. There may be times when I can’t provide what you are asking for, and I’ll tell you if that’s the case. However, we will always discuss it, and I promise to never judge you.

I know it’s hard to speak up while on the massage table; I struggle with it as well. And I get that you are just trying to relax. My hope is that you will feel comfortable speaking up when you are ready and that you feel every massage is a good massage.