Lifestyle

5 ways to be a 'massage insider' | Pro tips from MultiCare MedSpa

Massage is both a relaxing and therapeutic experience. It can reduce stress, relieve pain, increase circulation and improve your outlook on life. It can even be a part of your medical treatment plan. - Courtesy photo/MultiCare
Massage is both a relaxing and therapeutic experience. It can reduce stress, relieve pain, increase circulation and improve your outlook on life. It can even be a part of your medical treatment plan.
— image credit: Courtesy photo/MultiCare

By Emily Treakle-Chase
Licensed massage practitioner, MultiCare MedSpa

In order to obtain the wisdom of a "massage insider," you don't need to have experienced hours upon hours of bodywork. Before your next massage, help yourself relax by considering these five tips from a licensed massage practitioner at MultiCare MedSpa, with locations in Covington and Gig Harbor.

When we say, "undress to your comfort level," we really mean it.

Therapists and clients can all agree: keep nakedness under cover. We practice clear boundaries and good draping in order to work on specific areas and create comfort for our clients. However, if a client is more at ease wearing underwear, go for it. Our goal is to make you feel relaxed, judging our clients' choices doesn't fall into that category.

The size of your therapist has nothing to do with the type of massage you will receive.

Through the training we receive, all massage therapists learn proper ways to use their own body to achieve your session goals – otherwise known as body mechanics. Using our weight, your weight, and some leverage, even the most petite therapist can give deep tissue massage. Don't be dismayed if your deep tissue therapist only weighs 100 pounds: that's 100 pounds she can apply to your tight and angry shoulders.

In the same way, we are strong enough to lift and move your legs, arms and head. Often clients will hold or lift their extremities for us, this can cause an increase in muscle tension and a break in relaxation. Unless we ask for your assistance, assume that your head/arms/legs are not "too heavy" for us.

This is your time, use it wisely.

Use your massage time in ways that make you happy. When it comes to talking, you are the boss. Don't feel pressured to talk (or not to talk) in order to make the therapist happy. Also, speak up if the pressure isn't right, if the table is too warm, if you need a tissue. Your therapist will be happy to make those adjustments.

Flatulence happens.

Yes, when you relax your guts get to work digesting your food and you might pass gas. It happens to everybody. You don't need to be embarrassed, you don't need to apologize. If your therapist is offended, it's time to find a new therapist.

Hit the showers.

Please, if you worked out or just woke up and are headed to your massage appointment, take a quick shower. Bacteria love to live in sweat, so if you arrive to your massage without showering, you're going to have that bacteria moved all over your body.

When it comes to massage therapists, don't think we're judging you.

We don't think you're weak if you ask us to lessen our pressure. We won't think you're rude if you don't want to talk. Ladies, we don't tsk-tsk behind your back if you don't shave your legs; we would never ask a man to shave his legs, why would we expect something different from women? We've seen many tattoos, in many places, we will accept yours.

This is your time and place to relax.

Emily Treakle-Chase is a licensed massage practitioner at MultiCare MedSpa. To request an appointment, call 253-372-7008 or check out the spa specials at www.multicaremedspa.org.

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