Is it true that there is no such thing as “one size fits all?” For those that have struggled for years finding just the right pair of shoes — with or without orthotic inserts — the answer is a resounding “YES!” While size and fit are the main factors, we also take into consideration the aesthetics, durability, and amount of care required to maintain the shoes for optimal use.
What about your massage? What should you look for in a good massage? There are several factors to consider.
First and foremost, always ask about the qualifications of your therapist. While some cities and municipalities require licensing, that is not always a reliable judge of quality. Your therapist should have completed a minimum of 500 hours accredited training, and be recognized by a reputable national agency [such as the ABMP or AMTA]. Feel free to ask them also about any special training they may have. You may discover something new!
Next, your therapist should communicate clearly with you concerning the purpose of the massage. While many of us appreciate the benefits of a relaxation massage, your therapist should be capable of performing an exceptional therapeutic massage as well — releasing stress and addressing your body’s reaction to the stress. Not only does massage represent a significant financial investment, but your time is a precious commodity. Make sure you get the most out of it.
What is your comfort level with the massage therapist, and with the process? Make sure your therapist explains the routine that he or she will follow, and that you know the standards for dress and draping. You should know what kind of pressure the therapist will use, and feel free to adjust that pressure at any time. If at any time you are uncomfortable, the therapist will give you the option to make appropriate adjustments, or to end the massage immediately.
How many of us go to a store and are fortunate to walk out with [or in] the first pair of shoes we tried on? It may be the same with massage. If you don’t “click” with a particular therapist for any reason, you always have the liberty to “try on” several others. Ideally you will find several massage therapists that “fit” you — increasing your flexibility in scheduling those last minute appointments. The optimal massage establishment will provide you with a wide variety of massage modalities and therapists.
Taking care of our bodies includes so many diverse elements — physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. Keeping in touch with your body through frequent, high quality massage is a good first step in ensuring the balance that is so essential for optimal health. Talk to your favorite massage therapist today about establishing a solid plan for ongoing massages.