How much do I undress for my massage?
I always let my clients know they should undress "to their level of comfort". I personally like working w/ no clothing restrictions and always keep you professionally draped with sheets, so you need not worry about being exposed. If you prefer to keep your underwear on, that is perfectly fine. If you do not feel comfortable getting undressed at all, there are a few therapies that can be done fully clothed; including: Reiki, Integrated Reflexology, shiatsu, acupressure, and tuning fork therapy.
Why do I need to drink extra water before & after my massage?
During your massage, toxins, metabolic waste, scar tissue, interstitial fluid, and lactic acid is all flushed out of your muscles and surrounding soft tissue into your blood stream. This increase in blood stream fluid can leave you feeling dehydrated during and after your massage. Drinking water helps to flush all of these waste products out of your body and helps to restore your muscles and cells to a hydrated level. Always drink extra water before and after your massage to help stay hydrated, help clear the cellular waste and toxins from your system, re-hydrate your muscles, soft tissues, & joints, and help reduce muscular discomfort and tightness following you massage.
What can I do to get the most benefit from my massages?
Four things you can do to increase your massage benefits: water, stretch, exercise, and be more body conscious.
1. Drink lots and lots of water between appointments. Water is necessary for every metabolic process in your body. It transports nutrients to your cells and takes waste away from them. Being properly hydrated is a key component to health and wellness.
2. Stretch on a daily basis. Hold each stretch for a minimum 35 second count and repeat. For those with chronic pain or tightness, I like to recommend stretching as often as you can during the day. Regular stretching will lengthen your muscles, decrease joint pressure, pain, & increase range of motion. *Remember, never stretch a cold muscle. Warm the tissue up with some movement first.
3. Regular exercise helps pump blood in & out of your skeletal muscles (as well as strengthen your cardiovascular system). This regular exchange of blood flow helps replenish your muscles with healthy, oxygenated blood and encourages waste removal back into the blood stream (massage is kinda like passive exercising). Exercise also trains the muscles to move in their full range of motion and in different ways than your day job probably asks of them.
4. Being more body conscious means you pay attention to your actions and acknowledge when you are performing a behavior or movement in which causes your muscular "holding pattern" or adds stress or tension to a muscle group that causes you pain or discomfort. Whether you hold your shoulders, clench your teeth, or clutch the steering wheel, breaking bad muscular tension habits can help you find instant relief. Catching yourself doing these behaviors and correcting them will help you train your brain and body to break these bad habits.
How do you correct these patterns, you ask? Take a big breath and relax the muscles that are tight. Be present in the moment. Catch yourself in these habits as often as you can and correct them.
What do I do if I feel sore after my massage?
After a deep tissue massage, you may feel a little sore the following day; this is normal. Folks often feel sore after a hardy deep tissue massage before they feel relief. If the soreness persists longer than 2 days, please inform me. We may need to adjust the pressure or therapy used for your next session.
*continue to drink water (a sports drink is good too, especially if you are active)
*use a heating pad or take a hot shower/bath (a bath w/ Epsom salts helps to draw toxins from your body & sooth sore muscles; add aromatherapy as desired)
*warm your muscles up (5-10 min of brisk movement)
*stretch! - hold for 30 -60 sec., repeat stretch 2-3 times before moving onto another.
* following heat, always use ICE
- this is to clear any possible inflammation
After 2 days, should you still feel discomfort, heat is recommended, but I always say use whichever therapy gives you the most relief.
If you are sore for more than 2 days, please notify me at the time of you next appointment so we can make appropriate adjustments to your pressure.
~ Following these steps will get you feeling better in no time.
Is deep tissue massage supposed to hurt?
It doesn't have to hurt. There are many techniques that can be used to layer into muscles in order to get a deep sensation without forcing pain upon the client. Some chronic muscular holding patterns may need to go through some degree of pain or discomfort in order to make changes to the situation. There is a difference between muscular discomfort & nerve pain, and it is important that you notify me if you are experiencing nerve pain. The process of breaking up scar tissue, lengthening muscles/tendons, and releasing trigger points may require a degree of discomfort in order to make real, lasting therapeutic changes to the muscle.
Those with active trigger points (highly sensitive points) will experience a stimulation of the trigger point in order to properly "deactivate it". This is normal and appropriate therapy for those looking for relief from these points.
What are muscular "holding patterns"?
Muscular "holding patterns" develop when we participate in repetitive
movements, motions, or activities that ask our muscles to do the same action over and over again. A great example of this is folks who work on computers all day... these folks usually have very tight shoulders, neck, & chest since they are doing the same motion for hours at a time. After a while, your muscles start to shorten and become stuck in these patterns because they think they are doing you a "favor" by making these behaviors "easier" for you to do long term. Unfortunately, they don't usually know how to break out of these patterns and relax when the work is done. This leaves folks with chronic muscular holding patterns that need to be re-educated to relax. This is where regular massage helps.
How often should I get a massage?
I recommend a minimum of monthly massage for wellness & stress management purposes. For someone coming in for a specific muscular issue, you may need to come in weekly or every two weeks to jump start the muscular re-education process. When trying to re-educate holding patterns, you will need to have these areas addressed on a more frequent basis. Once muscles begin to learn how to relax, you will be able to space your appointments out more. Results vary from person to person and will also depend on how you take care of yourself & your body between appointments.
Why is daily stretching so important?
Stretching lengthens muscles, opens joints, allows blood circulation to flow with ease and increases your joint range of motion. It can also help decrease pain associated with muscular or nerve conditions. A loose and limber body is associated with better overall health & wellness.
What kind of lotion and oil do you use?
I use a blend of organic olive oil (~80%) and organic coconut oil (~20%).
Can you really feel the knots in my muscles?
Yes I can! I've been working with soft tissue for over a decade now. I have been trained to feel subtle (and not so subtle) changes in the soft tissue. My sense of touch has only gotten more sensitive and my intuition more acute over the years. Stagnation in our soft tissue and connective tissue can exist in various forms. This may include knots, tension, spasms, and scar tissue. Over the years my sense of touch has become very acute and I can usually find areas of build up and tension you never knew you had. I will often find trigger points that you were unaware of as well. If you are willing to work through these sensitive areas, a great deal of healing can be experienced.
My clients are often amazed at what I find.
Who can benefit from massage?
Just about anyone can get a massage. Children, teens, adults, elderly, special needs, athletes, weekend warriors, business people, parents, doctors, teachers, military, men, women, and animals. Massage is appropriate for all types of people at all degrees of health, stress levels, and needs.
Those who should check with a doctor before scheduling a massage include those under the care for cancer, cardiac problems, are on blood thinners, and high risk pregnancy.
Is that the dog snoring?