It's fun to find out...
I was recently introduced to this clip of comedian Steve Soelberg talking about his first massage. While it's absolutely hilarious it made think about the words I choose prior to giving a massage. It is not uncommon for me to have a client in my office that has never had a massage before or a client that is not familiar to me. I have a habit of saying, "get undressed to what you're comfortable with." This is different for everyone. I have come into the treatment room to find many states of undress, and in one case a fully dressed man sitting on the edge of the massage table.
If you are a woman, it is helpful to remove your bra for me to adequately work your back and shoulders (it is NOT required, but helpful). If you are a man that wears boxer shorts, it is helpful to remove them for me to work on your quadricep and hamstring muscles of your upper legs (again NOT required). It is important that you are both comfortable and happy with the massage you are receiving. You are always covered with a blanket and I only uncover the part of your body I am working on.
I am going to be more mindful going forward with my directions.
The second part of Mr. Soelberg's routine is also very humorous, but not something that I ever ask. I have never asked a client what type of pressure they like prior to their massage (I have had many clients tell me up front though). Pressure is subjective. Everyone's body is different. I have been a massage therapist for 15 years and in that time I have learned that no 2 people want or need the same pressure or depth in their massage. I have also learned that some people think they want a certain level of pressure, but their bodies respond better to less or more.
Enjoy the video!!!! ?
Dry Brushing 101
Never heard of dry brushing? This wonderful treat for your skin is an age old technique for self care. Skin brushing, or dry brushing, is a great way to exfoliate off dead skin, stimulate the lymphatic system, reduce cellulite, unclog pores, relieve stress, fight ingrown hairs, helps eliminate wastes and toxins, and improves circulation. You can start your new year with a new routine by dry brushing before you shower everyday or adding this technique to your weekly or monthly massage.
Bet you didn't know I offer skin brushing as an add-on to your massage. I experienced this technique during a massage I had in England and loved it. When you quickly exfoliate the skin before applying oil your skin absorbs the beneficial oil and nourishes your skin even more. In the winter months this is very important for healthy skin and immune boosting.
My skin brushes are natural bristle and are cleaned after each use. Please let me know if you are interested in adding this technique to your next massage.
Time for a tune up ;)
Tired of the same ol' massage music? I am.
I have been experimenting with some new music to help you relax. Using my Spotify account, I can find just about anything you would like to hear. Classical? Falling rain? Jazz? Arabic Hits of the 90's? The sound of a dryer running for an hour? (trust me it's awesome) We can give anything a try.
Give me some suggestions on your next visit. Spotify has pre made playlists in all genres, or I can create a playlist just for you (I just made a killer 80's playlist for singing in the car) or we can play your favorite album or band on shuffle.
Ever wonder why I put a pillow on your eyes during your massage treatment? There are several reasons really. I started this practice many years ago when I had a regular client that would keep his eyes open during the massage. I thought, "well, he doesn't seem very relaxed." I added the eye pillow to my practice to help those who have trouble starting the letting go process at the beginning of a treatment.
Come to find out light pressure on the eyeballs lowers your heart rate by evoking the oculocardiac reflex and stimulates the vagus nerve, which regulates your heart rate, mood, and digestion. It helps your belly and brain relax and may make you a bit hungry (sorry, I don't provide snacks).
I also find it easier to relax in a darkened space than in a bright one and my new massage room can get pretty bright in the afternoon even with room darkening curtains. Now I use the eye pillow on everyone after I've massaged and stretched your head and neck to tell your brain that now it's time to fall into the massage.
I recommend getting an eye pillow for home & office use. It only takes a few minutes laying down on the couch or reclining in your desk chair to help lower your heart rate and get your belly ready for lunch ;)