Get untangled and cleaned up

Imagine that you walk into your home one day and you notice how messy it is.  There are dirty clothes laying around and all tangled together.  There is clutter everywhere you look.  Somebody has been using things and not putting them away.  Somebody else hasn’t been doing enough cleaning and washing the dishes.

So you call your expert service to help you out.  You take some time for yourself while they get things back in order.  Sounds terrific, doesn’t it?

When you come back, you realize the mess had been bigger than you thought.  Not only were the big problems taken care of, but other smaller things that hadn’t been as noticeable before were also.  Your expert service providers were thorough and everything now looks great.

You realize it has been quite a while since everything was cleaned and put away properly.  You like it this way and decide to stay on top of things and not it get so messy again.

Now instead of your home, think about yourself.  Your muscles are all stiff, tight, and feel all tangled and knotted up.  Your mind feels cluttered which makes it hard to concentrate.

So now call your other expert – your massage therapist.  Again you can have some time for yourself with no responsibilities while I do the work.  Your muscles will find relief and can go back to their natural positions.  The quiet time for yourself can help you clear the clutter from your mind, providing stress relief and allow you to think clearly again.

I will give attention to the areas you say need it, but you may find that other areas were in need of work too.  You just weren’t aware of them since the main problem bothered you so much.  I will be thorough and when you are done you can feel much better.

Regular massage helps you to keep feeling great.  Just like your home, a big tangled mess and lots of clutter takes longer to clear up.  Once you feel good after a massage, keep it going by coming back on a set schedule.  A nice bonus is that you always have your next massage to look forward to.

Are you ready to start?  Contact me and you can get untangled and the clutter cleared.

Barry is a licensed Massage Therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson, Ohio.  Find out more about him, his business, and massage at www.HudsonMassageTherapy.com

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How to receive a great massage

When you make a massage appointment, do you want a so-so experience or a great one?  Try these tips for making the most of your massage.

Part of a great massage experience depends on the massage therapist.

Do some research.  Check them out online, talk to a friend, or talk to the massage therapist before your appointment.  Ask questions about things that are important to you, such as a condition or pain you are having.  Explain what you want.  If you leave something unsaid, it will likely be on your mind during the massage – which prevents you from relaxing as much and getting all of the benefits you can.

This is your time and when you walk out the door you should feel much better.  I am happy to spend a few minutes before we start to understand exactly what you want and to answer the questions you have, so your mind is at ease with no nagging questions or issues.  Don’t worry about what I will think of your questions, concerns, or your body.  Many people have the same common concerns, so you probably aren’t the first one to ask.

Part of a great experience depends on you.  What can you do to make your massage great?

Arrive a few minutes early.  Try to schedule your massage so you are not rushing to get there, or having to hurry somewhere else immediately.  Sometimes unexpected things happen that keep you from arriving as early as you want.  If you come in just after racing out of work and fighting traffic, it will take longer for you to relax and put those things behind you.

Wear whatever you want for your massage.  What you take off and leave on is your choice.  You will be draped with a sheet the whole time, except for what I am working on.  I really don’t think about what you do or don’t have on.  It’s not an issue for me, so don’t let it be one for you.

Now that you are on the table, here are a few things you can do to make your experience better.

Breathe deeply.  As we get busy, our breath can become shallow.  Draw deep breaths that you can feel all the way into your abdomen.  In just a minute, you will begin to feel more relaxed and peaceful.

Let go of the world.  This is your chance to escape for a while.  Turning off your brain can be difficult for some people, so concentrate on the moment.  Feel your breathing.  Focus on the feel of the strokes and stretches.  Feel the warmth from the table warmer.

Allow yourself to go limp.  I will move you around a little, and I will ask if I need some help from you.  Some of the massage movements and stretches are more effective if you don’t try to help out.

Communicate during the massage when needed.  I’ll adjust the pressure, temperature, and music to how you like it.  They are easy changes to make.

Finally, a couple of more suggestions.

Get regular massages.  I have noticed that the people who come in regularly have longer lasting effects than those who only come in on occasion.  Also, work with the same massage therapist.  The more you get to know each other, the more trust you will have in them and the better results you will enjoy.

When you get a massage, get a great one!

Barry is a licensed Massage Therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson, Ohio.  Find out more about him, his business, and massage at www.HudsonMassageTherapy.com

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.

Barry is a licensed Massage Therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson, Ohio.  Find out more about him, his business, and massage at www.HudsonMassageTherapy.com

Should I get a massage from just anybody?

You would like some relief from your pain or discomfort or your stress.  You think a massage is a good idea to help you feel better.  There are lots of choices to pick from when you are looking for a massage.  You may find a daily deal online – but there are issues that you can read about here.  You could also go to a massage chain – but you can read here why they are not for everybody.  Some people wonder if they can go to just anybody for a massage.

The short answer is yes.  There are people who will take your money and work on your muscles.

The full answer which I think you are really interested in is more involved.

Not everyone who does massage has the same training, and not all are licensed.  Here in Ohio a person with massage education and training with a license is called a licensed massage therapist (LMT).  Most people who are LMT’s will make that known in their advertising, web site, and marketing material.  As a side note, massage is regulated by each state, so you may see something different than LMT in other areas.

There are many reasons to look for a LMT to work with as you make your decision.  A person practicing massage without a license may have had no massage training at all – they may have been shown some things or learned on their own.

LMT’s (and I am one) have been educated in the following areas.

Ethics.  There are a lot of situations that need to be considered.  Nothing out of the ordinary may ever come up in your massages, but circumstances occur that we need to know how to handle.  It could be serious (such as keeping all of your information confidential except as required by law), or something simple that people are unsure about, and being able to handle it professionally while keeping you at ease.

Training.  I have studied muscles, soft tissue, and bones and how they work together and affect each other.  I studied the physiology of the body to know what effects will occur from what I am doing.  I had hundreds of hours of hands-on training to learn the proper massage techniques and worked in a school clinic under the supervision of an instructor.  My training was massage specific and didn’t include other things such as haircuts and manicures.

Prostitution and sex.  Yes it’s true that some people use massage as a cover for prostitution.  Others, while not engaging in prostitution, will pursue sex with their client, and vice versa.  As with any group of people, there are a minority who will bend the rules (of law or ethics) and those who will do whatever they think they can get away with.  Sex with a client is illegal and an ethical violation, and a person with a license is jeopardizing their license, livelihood, reputation, and career.  Besides knowing that it is wrong, we have too much at stake.

On an even more serious note, human trafficking still goes on partly under the heading of massage.  Young girls are taken far from their homes and forced into prostitution.  If you suspect this happening around you, please report the establishment to local and state authorities.

Insurance.  I have liability insurance for my practice.  Massage and some of the tools used can cause damage to your body if done incorrectly.  If you have a problem, does the person working on you have insurance?  You don’t want to walk out of your massage in worse shape and have a possible legal battle also.

Finally, as with so many other things in life, you get what you pay for.  If you want to be cared for by a properly trained and licensed professional, do a little checking.  It won’t take long.  I will carefully listen to you and ask questions so you can walk out feeling great and knowing you got what you really needed.  You can relax completely knowing that I have your best interests in mind and that I have the skills developed over many years to help you.

Do you let just anybody work on your roof, plumbing, or vehicle?  Do you follow investment advice from some guy in a restaurant?  Do you get legal advice from a baker?  It’s your one and only body, so get it taken care of by somebody who knows what they are doing.  The price in dollar terms should only be one of the factors you use to make a decision.  Click here to read more about massage and price.

Barry is a licensed Massage Therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson, Ohio.  Find out more about him, his business, and massage at www.HudsonMassageTherapy.com

Are massage chains a good deal for you?

You have probably seen their ads, heard about them, or been to one.  Massage franchise chains showed up a few years ago and they have been expanding since.  Are they a good deal for you?  Let’s consider some things you will want to think about before you make a decision.

Money

The introductory price looks like a great deal but remember it is just that – a one time price.  The regular price you will pay will be higher.  The company gets the bulk of your payment so therapist working on you is really relying on a tip from you, so your cost just went up.  Like many other massage therapists in business I don’t expect tips – I would rather see you use that money to come back more often.

When you schedule an hour appointment you get a 50 minute massage.  A little quick math reveals that ten minutes is 1/6th of an hour, which is about 16%.  If you add 16% to the massage price and a tip to your cost, have you saved any money than going to a local massage therapist?  Unless you are very late and we have to stop, your 60 minute massage appointment with me will get you 60 minutes of hands on work.

To get the discounted price, you will have to be in a contract with them.  You will be automatically billed and unused appointments may not roll over (check your local franchise for details).  You may be paying somebody to not massage you.  Some franchises have quotas to reach so you may be encouraged to spend.  Your massage visit should be relaxing and relieve pressure, not add to it.

The therapists

Chains can have high turnover rates.  You may not get the same therapist from visit to visit.  Typically working with the same person provides more effective massage results.  They get to know your preferences and based on your feedback about what has worked or not worked before, make adjustments during your appointment.  If you find a therapist that who does great work for you, it may be difficult to find them if they leave the chain.  The chain obviously doesn’t want customers to leave and won’t go out of their way to direct you to them.

Therapists may be booked for several consecutive appointments.  Massage therapists are human and we get tired, hungry, thirsty, and in need of a break.  It’s a physical business that takes a good amount of effort.  If your appointment is the fourth one in a row, you may not get the results you want.

Therapists have very limited time between appointments.  They don’t have much time to get to know you and your needs.  You may receive a basic massage which may feel nice –  but if you have an area that needs special attention it may not be addressed as you wish.

The biggest benefit offered by the chains is convenience.  You can often get in quickly on the same day, which may not happen with a local small business.  Working with a massage chain may be a good deal for you, but it is not for everybody.  It may actually be more expensive and you may not get the benefits you can get from a local therapist who will take the time to get to know you and help you manage your pain and stress.

Barry is a licensed Massage Therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson, Ohio.  Find out more about him, his business, and massage at www.HudsonMassageTherapy.com