Give massage another chance

Some people love massage.  They talk about how much they look forward to it, how much it helps them, and how great their massage therapist is.  They may strongly encourage you to go also.  You may be hesitant because of a previous massage experience that was less than stellar.

Have you had a poor experience with massage?  One that left you feeling “meh” and thinking it wasn’t worth the time and the money?  Did you walk out feeling disappointed instead of feeling great?

Some have had a bad experience with massage.  The pressure was either too light, so it wasn’t effective, or too hard, leaving you in pain during the massage and for a day or more afterwards.  You think – “I paid to feel worse?”.

Some people get a massage while traveling either as a treat or to help them feel better.  Depending on where you go, you can be in for a big surprise with what you get, particularly if you are outside of the country.  The techniques may be radically different; the amount of formal training can vary widely, and draping may be minimal or even non-existent, as well as many other factors in a massage experience.

You may be wondering why your friends rave on about how great massage is when you didn’t get much out of it.

Don’t let one bad or unimpressive experience keep you from getting the massage you need.

Your massage is your timeYou get to decide on how much pressure is used; on spending extra time on a painful area you have; on the temperature or other factors to make it more enjoyable for you.  Although your massage therapist likely has more knowledge of the body than you, it is your body (and time and money).  Make your desires known before the massage starts so you can walk out feeling great.   Do you tend to be cool or cold?  I’ll be happy to turn up the table warmer or pull out a blanket for you.

You also may have run into some unprofessional behavior.  Maybe the therapist wasn’t prepared on time, wasn’t attentive to you, or didn’t provide good customer service.  Like in any other profession, those people eventually lose their clients and their job or business.  It doesn’t mean it is typical of all in the industry.

Think of your favorite food – you know, the one you really look forward to enjoying.  Now imagine that the first time you had it, it wasn’t prepared properly.  Maybe it was undercooked, or slightly burned.  Maybe there was too much salt.  Maybe you had it at a restaurant, and while the food was good, the service or atmosphere was not.

Now, think if you never tried it again after one bad episode.  Your friends would probably try to convince you to give it another try.  Now that you know how good it really is when done properly, how much would you regret it if you never tried it again?

What if the first movie you saw was awful?  If you didn’t watch another, you would have missed some outstanding work – performances that you remember for years, that can change the way you think or feel about an issue.

You would also miss some other awful movies – but now you know more about what ones to see and weed out the ones that you don’t think will appeal to you.

Do the same thing with massage.  Listen to your friends who get massage.  They can tell you things to look for and avoid, and will likely be happy to share their favorite massage therapist with you.  Do a little research.  Check out the massage therapist and the business online and give them a call with any questions you may have.

Massage is a great way to help you feel good so you can do the things you want to do.  Don’t let pain or stress stop you when a solution is available.  If you have had an unsatisfactory massage experience, do some checking and give it another try.

Barry is a licensed massage therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson Ohio.  You can learn more at


Make time to Relax

Busy-ness is the trend these days.  People carry over-packed schedules like winning trophies.  “I’m SO busy at work!”  “How do you have time to do that? I’m too busy to read/watch TV/exercise/do anything fun.”  “I can’t get monthly massages I have too much to DO!”

Too much “busy” could be making you tired, sick, and probably cranky.

When do you relax? RELAX.  “Relaxation” is a word we hear often, but don’t know always know what it means. Here are some options for you.

re·lax  verb \ri-ˈlaks\

1: the state of being free from tension or anxiety.

2: a way to rest and enjoy yourself

3: recreation or rest, especially after a period of work.

4: the loss of tension in a part of the body, especially in a muscle when it ceases to contract.

5: something that you do to stop feeling nervous, worried, etc.

More importantly, what does relaxation mean to you?

If you’re not a “hot bath and good book” kind of person, you probably cringe at Calgon commercials and spa photos of people with stones piled on their backs.  But here’s the beauty: You can make your own definition of relaxation.

It’s your job to figure out what you enjoy doing, what makes you smile, and what makes you feel like you are a hundred miles from work or home jobs.

Then, make time for that.

You have a schedule.  Write in special time for a hobby, a nap, massage, your favorite show, a weekend getaway, a new class, ANY thing you enjoy can be relaxing.

Need someone to give you a reason? Want permission? I hereby, with the authority granted to me, do give you the permission to relax.

Here are some ideas:

  • Spend part of the day alone.

  • Spend part of the day with your family, doing ONLY fun stuff.

  • Meditate

  • Devote time to your hobby.

  • Sleep in. Or get up extra early. Whichever excites you!

  • Arrange for take-out or pre-cooked meals all day.

  • Schedule a massage!

  • If you’ve always wanted a day to “not leave the house” today’s the day! Wake when you wish, eat when you’re hungry, stay in your jammies and read a book.

Taking care of you is important.  And, self-care puts you in a better frame of mind to take care of the people who depend on you.  So find the thing that mellows you out, and make it happen!

Barry is a licensed massage therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson Ohio.  You can learn more at

Benefits of a 60 minute massage

Massages are usually scheduled in blocks of time.  A 60 minute massage has its own benefits, which are discussed in the following post.

The Benefits of a 60 minute massage

An hour out of your day can make a big difference in your life.  It can give you pain relief and lower your stress so you can be more productive and better able to deal with what life brings to you next.

Barry is a licensed massage therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson Ohio.  You can learn more at

Who I am afraid of

There is somebody who I am afraid of.  It’s probably not who you may think of at first.

It’s not a monster like a werewolf, or a person out to do me harm, although like most people who work on their own I have to be aware of my surroundings and look out for my safety.  I don’t think about those things much.  I do think quite a bit about the scariest person – the customer who doesn’t come back.

I want everything about your time with me and in my office to be outstanding.  I want you to feel great from the massage work you receive.  I want you to feel safe at all times and confident in my qualifications.  I want you to know you are an important person to me, that I care about you, and that I will give you my full attention while you are here.  I want you to come back because life events will make your muscles hurt and cause you stress and I know how much relief massage provides.

If there is something – anything – that you don’t like about your massage, I want to know.  If it is during your massage speak up and I will make adjustments.  I can adjust the pressure or temperature or music or draping as much as I can.  It doesn’t matter to me what the temperature is, and I know each person has their own comfort zone.

I get massages too.  I know what it is like to be on the table.  I really look forward to my massages and want to feel great when it is done.  I know that you are coming in with pain and stress and you want to leave without them.  I don’t want to do anything to add more to what you have.

If you tell me not to massage some area, then I won’t.  Obviously private areas are off limits to me. If you don’t want your feet touched, just let me know and I will respect your wishes.  We will talk before starting about what you want today, and I will adjust the massage accordingly.  Do you want extra time on your back or neck?  That’s fine – just let me know and I’ll do it.

If there is something you don’t like about your massage, chances are good that somebody else feels the same way.  If you don’t say anything, I may not  know a change is needed.  If you don’t let your me know your preferences, you will get the same disappointing results.

If there was something unsatisfactory with my service to you, I want to know so I can improve it.

I respect your privacy.  Although I am used to seeing and touching bodies, this may be a new or uncommon experience for you to have a different person touching you.  I want you to be relaxed, so wear whatever you want during your massage.

Many businesses fail because they don’t listen to their customers.  I want to know what you think.  When I ask how things are, don’t say “OK” or “fine” or “good” if they are not.  Nobody has hurt my feelings yet, and I don’t think you will be the first.

Barry is a licensed massage therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson Ohio.  You can learn more at



Benefits of a 30 minute massage

Massages are usually scheduled in blocks of time.  A 30 minute massage has its own benefits, which are discussed in the following post.

The Benefits of a 30 minute massage

If you want to discover what massage can do for you, start with a 30 minute massage.  If you get massages but would like to try them regularly, start with 30 minutes and find out how helpful they are.

Barry is a licensed massage therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson Ohio.  You can learn more at

Massage and attractiveness

Let’s say you have some pain that you would rather not have any longer.  Maybe you need some relief from the stress that is weighing on you.  Perhaps you are having a lot of headaches or are not sleeping well.  It happens to just about everybody.

I’ll schedule a massage!” you think.

But before you make the call, other thoughts creep in.  “I should wait until I lose some weight or get in better shape”  or something else along those lines.  So you wait and live with the pain and stress and headaches and you just don’t feel good.

To that I say “Nonsense!” with a capital “NON”.

I don’t care how you look.  I will observe and ask questions about your body, but not make a judgment about it.  I don’t care if you need a haircut or didn’t shave your legs or what your weight is or how attractive you are.  What I want is to help you feel better when you walk out than when you came it.  This is my business.  I’m not here for a date, a wife (already have one), or anything else except to help you.  I won’t talk about you to other clients.

If massage were only for the most attractive people, most massage therapists would go out of business quickly.  My business could not survive if my only market were models, cheerleaders, athletes, and actors.

Even worse, I would not qualify and could not get a massage either.

Massage is for everybody and every body. Don’t let how you look be a factor in getting a massage.

If you are active, it helps you keep going with what you want to do. It also helps if you sit at a desk or in a vehicle, or can’t be as active as you would like.  Muscles are affected by both overuse and under use.  Stress builds up even on those who seem not to have a care.

If you are putting off getting a massage because of what you think I may think of you, stop.  I want you to feel better in the body you have today.

Make the call.

Barry is a licensed massage therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson Ohio.  You can learn more at

Take 30 minutes

Recently I was given some good advice.  Actually it wasn’t anything new – it was something I have told to people and have used myself also.

I had something I wanted to do but I was having a hard time getting started.  When I looked at everything there was to do, it looked a bit intimidating and overwhelming.  It was something I had an interest in starting and I thought it would be very beneficial to me once it was in place.  The problem was I would work just a little at it but didn’t get very far.

The advice was so simple.  They told me to just set aside 30 minutes to work on it.  I could stop there and I would have made some progress.  The accumulated 30 minute blocks will eventually add up and I will get to where I want to be.  Of course I could keep going after the 30 minutes were up if I wanted to.  I do that  sometimes since I realize the task isn’t really all that hard.

I used that advice immediately and made some nice headway right away.  It helped me to see that I could do what I wanted and it gave me a nice boost to my enthusiasm for the project.  It left me with a good feeling when the time was up and I was looking forward to the next 30 minute block.

I hope you can use this idea on an endeavor you have been thinking about.  It’s also helped me recently around my house.  I’m cleaning up, clearing out what I don’t need, and reducing clutter.  I’m working on one area at a time.  I’ve made progress and it doesn’t seem like such a big job when I think I’m just cleaning off my desk or my coat closet.

A big part of the success I will achieve will be setting aside those 30 minute blocks.  If they are only done sporadically, I won’t get far and it will take much longer to finish.  However if I consistently schedule them I will be successful.

That story leads to this – are you setting aside and consistently scheduling time to take care of yourself?  Can you look in the mirror at the end of the month and honestly tell yourself that you didn’t have 30 minutes for a massage?  It’s true that you can feel better with a longer massage, but even a 30 minute massage can help you with pain or discomfort you have been dealing with.  It also is enough time to relax and experience relief from the stress that has been weighing you down.  You will find relief and start feeling better by getting massages consistently.

Look at your calendar and make an appointment.  You have to make it happen, not wait for free time.  I’ll be ready for you when it is time to start and I won’t keep you waiting after it is over, so you can get back to your life.  Make at least 30 minutes this month for yourself and begin to feel better.

Barry is a licensed massage therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson Ohio.  You can learn more at

Four ways to keep stress away

Even it you’ve kicked stress out, it’s always looking for an opportunity to come back.  Sometimes it’s obvious, like an illness or scrambling to finish a project or getting your taxes done at the last minute.  Many times it’s very subtle, with just a little thing here or there and before you realize it, stress has unpacked its bags and has made itself at home.  It then commences to kink up your neck, keep you awake, disrupt your concentration, and in general make you miserable.

Toss out stress along with those leftovers you can’t identify anymore.  Here are four quick ways to keep stress at bay.


Meditation does not have to be about turning your body into a pretzel, chanting, and reaching enlightenment.  It can simply be about creating a moment of stillness in your mind as a way to become more relaxed.  Just one minute, 60 seconds of meditation, can dramatically improve your mood, your productivity and the quality of your day.  Take a minute to do some deep breathing and observe how your mind slows down and things seem a little less urgent and more manageable.


It can be tough to make time for exercise when the schedule fills up and tensions get high.  But that’s when it becomes even more important and helps the most. Exercise can relieve the physical symptoms of stress like fatigue, pain, and moodiness as well as giving you an energy boost.  If you can’t make time for daily workouts, try to fit a 5-10 minute walk outside into some part of your day.  A little goes a long way when you need it.

Laughter and Music

Both laughter and music can lower the blood pressure.  In fact, this study in 2011 showed that 3 months of laughter or music therapy resulted in the same drop in blood pressure that could be achieved with a low-salt diet, losing 10 pounds, or taking a blood-pressure-lowering medication.

So cue up the “Who’s on first?” or dance around with your kids while making dinner and work some giggling and humming into your day.


I’m sure you saw this one coming, but it is true.  Regular massage can improve sleep, relieve headaches, reduce muscle pain, and improve your mood.  Plus, massage feels good.  When you feel good, you play more, laugh more, work more efficiently, and take better care of the people you love.  Schedule a massage now and send stress packing.

Commit to taking care of yourself!  You may be surprised with the results.


Why go to the same massage therapist?

I’m always telling you to get massages and providing you reasons why you should.  For those same reasons and the benefits it provides, I get massages too.  I really look forward to them and make sure if at all possible that nothing will get  in the way.  They are an important part of my self-care.  I get an additional benefit  in that I sometimes learn a new technique that I can include in my work to make your massage even better, and it helps remind me of how things feel while receiving a massage instead of giving one.

I get massages from a few people.  All of them are good, but I have one person I like the best.  I believe that the same things that help me get the most out of my massage by working with the same person will also help you.

My massage therapist knows me and my body.  I am far from perfect, but she accepts me and helps me feel better.  Massage has helped me feel better about my body by giving me a positive experience and remembering it can feel good.  By knowing I will be accepted and not judged, I am less self-conscious about my imperfections now.  She knows what needs work and what produces the best results for me.  Since she doesn’t see me daily, she can observe changes and potential problems that I haven’t noticed.

Since we have worked together for a while, we have better communication.  I can explain what issues I am having and what needs attention this time.  I can do this comfortably, knowing that she will take what I say professionally and know that it is intended appropriately.  I can speak up during the massage and let her know if I would like something to change (such as the pressure or the temperature), or let her know what she is doing feels great.  We can have a friendly chat during the massage, we can talk about something serious, or it can be quiet, and we are both fine with whatever amount of conversation occurs that time.  The amount of conversation during your massage is always up to you.

I also know what to expect during the massage.  This allows me to relax quickly and thoroughly.  I know that I am in good hands and that I will feel much better when it is over.  There is not a guessing game of wondering what will happen next, or if she is going to address my needs that we talked about before starting.

Much of this boils down to that we have developed trust.  We both know what to expect from each other.  A great massage requires great communication.  To fully relax, you need to have enough trust to let your guard down, which can make you feel a bit vulnerable.  Opening that gate can let out some of what is trapped inside and allow other good things in.  You can leave behind the negatives that you have been carrying around and become open to more positives.  You may be surprised at the peace that you can experience.

If you have been bouncing around among massage therapists, whether in a spa or chain environment, or purchasing daily deals, you may be missing out on the benefits you can realize.  Work with the same massage therapist and see if you can get greater results by developing trust with them.  I believe that is a major factor in much of the results I have helped my customers reach.

4 ways to improve your sleep

A good night’s sleep is very beneficial, allowing your mind and body to relax and get the rest they both need.  It allows you to get your day off to a good start, with energy and enthusiasm instead of dragging yourself off to your activity pumped full of caffeine.  Unfortunately many people have occasional problems sleeping, and some have issues that are longer-term.

Sleep issues aren’t just a seasonal problem, such as changing clocks ahead or back, or how much light there is at beginning or end of the day. It’s estimated that over 60 million Americans suffer from short-term (a few days or weeks) or long-term (more than a month) insomnia.  Most cases of chronic insomnia are secondary, which means they are the symptom or side effect of some other problem.

You have likely heard the standard tips to help you sleep, such as avoiding caffeine, using room-darkening shades, and going to bed at the same time every night.  Here are a few other helpful ideas that aren’t as well known.

Nap properly

Taking a nap during the day can be great for productivity and fabulous for health, but you’ve got to do it right.  Aim to nap for 20 to 25 minutes.  Nap longer than that and you’ll feel groggy when you wake up and you risk not being able to fall asleep when it’s bedtime.

Consider the temperature.

Take a warm (not hot) shower or bath about an hour before bedtime, and keep your room cool at night. The drop in body temperature signals your body to calm so you’ll fall asleep faster and sleep more deeply.

Turn off the electronics.

This is probably the most important and the least followed piece of advice.

Get an old fashioned alarm clock so you don’t need to use your phone. Turn off your phone, tablet, laptop, or whatever you’ve got, and put the devices in another room. Yes, a whole other room. You may think that a phone on silent, hanging out on your nightstand, won’t disturb your rest, but it will.  Just knowing it’s there puts your body on alert.  It’s far too tempting to reach over and ‘just check a few emails’ if you do wake up in the middle of the night.  Save yourself and break this habit.

Get a massage

Oh, yeah!  Massage can help with sleep issues. There have been several studies demonstrating how effective massage is in people with sleep problems, especially when treating secondary issues that may impair sleep, like back pain, pregnancy and migraines.

Make an appointment and get ready for a better night’s sleep.


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