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8 Things You Should Do When Getting a Massage
If it’s your first time getting a massage, you’re probably wondering about the things you should do to make the experience worthwhile. Whether you just need to reduce some tension in your muscles, get relief from chronic pain or plainly have a moment of relaxation, a good massage will enhance your overall emotional and mental well-being. It’s not only for mere relaxation or vanity, there are many benefits in getting a full body massage. You simply have to try and experience it. Here are eight things you should do before your first massage to ensure you get the best out it.
1. Clean Up
Take a shower before your session for the benefit of both you and your massage therapist. Most facilities have showers in-house so you can either shower there or at home, wherever you feel comfortable.
Lay off the perfume to avoid interfering with the aromatherapy elements in the spa or massage venue that are meant to improve your experience. And if you have long hair, tie it up to prevent it from interfering with the massage by getting tangled during the session.
2. Be on time
Arriving minutes late after your scheduled appointment will mean cutting your time short for the next client to be accommodated. Of course, your masseuse will not work past the scheduled time. If you want to enjoy the whole experience, be a professional customer and come on time.
It may not be that easy to relax when someone you’re not familiar with is touching your body. There are other types of massage which are best experienced when in the nude, though this may be quite overwhelming for a first-timer. When the masseuse indicates the start of the massage, close your eyes and try to relax. Breathe deeply and let yourself enjoy the moment. The massage therapist is a professional at doing her job so you have to learn to trust her.
4. Check for the face cushion
As you lie down and prepare for the massage, check if the face cushion has a hole to breathe into. If not, you simply have to lie down with your head either tilted to the right or left for you breathe. To make sure you have an unforgettable relaxing experience, see to it you are positioned in a way that you can easily breathe.
5. Don’t eat a heavy meal
Having a huge meal before a massage will stimulate your digestion, and it may leave you feeling uncomfortably bloated. The best option would be to eat a light meal two hours prior. Remember to not eat a heavy meal before a massage to not ruin your experience.
6. Let your massage therapist know what ails you
You should let your masseuse know if you have a serious health concern or condition. If you bruise easily, tell the therapist beforehand so she can adjust the pressure. You don’t want to end up looking like someone who came from a boxing fight. It’s alright to ask for more or less pressure during your massage. Your masseuse will be willing to oblige your request and won’t take any offense from it. As a matter of fact, most massage therapists want you to inform them of your likes and dislikes during the session so that they can ensure that you have a good massage experience.
7. Don’t work out after your massage
You go to a massage in order to have a relaxing experience. Hitting the gym after a soothing message will defeat its purpose. If you do work out, remember to do it before and not after your massage. Your exercised muscles after the gym will benefit most from a good massage. You are likely going to stress yourself if you exercise immediately after a massage since you’ll be straining the muscles which were relaxed by the massage. You should allow your body to enjoy the soothing effects and heal first after your relaxing massage.
8. Don’t drink coffee afterwards
If you booked your massage for an early morning session, you should be having your caffeine fix before your scheduled appointment. Drinking your coffee after a relaxing massage can tense up your already relaxed muscles, eliminating the pleasant effects of the massage. Opt for a caffeine-free herbal tea instead. Your muscles will thank you for it. Massage is a close and personal experience that you have to relax, get comfortable and enjoy. The eight things mentioned above will serve as your guide for your first massage. Booking your first appointment may make you a bit anxious, but once you get to try it, you’ll be looking forward to your next session.
Marc Innes is the Owner and Principal of the School of Natural Therapies, a training school for Massage & Holistic Therapies located in London. Marc began his career in the NHS, working in a number of managerial and training roles within the Ambulance Service in London. He spent much of that time educating and coaching medical staff. Over time, he developed an interest in all things complementary to Allopathic Medicine, in particular, Reiki Healing and EFT, which culminated in running a successful teaching and ‘energy healing’ practice. Marc is passionate about the massage and complementary therapy industry.