7 mistakes to avoid when scheduling a massage

1) Booking an appointment for today

Booking an appointment on the day may feel attractive if you’re suffering from pain and you need to experience relief. However, bear in mind that re-active massage usually only relieves pain. Pro-actively scheduling your massage in advance delivers better outcomes such as resolving the symptom, improving joint function and “tops you up” before you actually need it – it’s what smart people do! The best massage therapists also get booked up in advance meaning that only the “always available” therapist is free to see you today. Quiet therapists are less likely to deliver long term benefit to you, so you can get stuck at the pain relief level!

2) Choose the wrong type of massage – not knowing the basics

It’s essential to know what outcome you want to receive from your massage treatment before booking your treatment. If you’re suffering and in pain, you have a choice – you can either sooth or mildly relieve pain using light pressure massage techniques such as Swedish and spa type massage. Alternatively, you can choose a course of deep tissue or sports massage sessions to fully relieve the symptom and correct muscle dysfunction.

3) Choosing a therapist without doing the background checks

Massage training and personal standards can differ dramatically from one massage practitioner to another. It is important to assess whether your therapist’s knowledge, palpation skills, therapeutic boundaries and hygiene practices are of a safe standard. Visually observing clean and used laundry piles is a positive indicator of hygiene. Asking your therapist basic questions such as “how does massage work?” will enable you to determine knowledge and probing how much information they will tell you about another client will reveal how trustworthy they are. Well, run clinics have systems that ensure hygienic protocols, recruitment processes and have standards of practices in place to give you the ease of mind so that you can trust and feel safe in your treatment process.

4) Assuming only one session will instantly resolve all your physical ailments – Requesting just to focus on your painful symptom

It is important to manage your treatment expectations and realise that any outcome beyond mild pain relief will normally take more than one massage treatment. It helps the process of healing to budget this fact in your head and wallet. Realising that you may have to take some extra lifestyle steps to alleviate pain, manage environmental causes and boost your body’s healing time helps too.

5) Talking your way through your massage – failing to relax your mind as well as your body

Depending on the reasons why you are receiving a massage, it could be worth using some of your massage time to chill out, switch off your thinking and dip into a theta state of mind. It can also help the massage benefits last longer by placing your attention on the body part being massaged. The physical pressure applied to your muscle has the effect of enhancing the neurological pathway from the brain to the muscle. Most people suffer from an inability to switch off muscles. Paying attention to the release of tension can aid your brain in establishing better lines of communication with areas that are chronically tensed up.

6) Squeeze in a short massage

Most people are forced into taking action to book a massage because of muscle pain, discomfort, stress or tension. When needs must, they will gladly take ANY appointment going. The temptation to squeeze in a short 30-minute massage for relief is strong. Short massage treatments generally deliver less benefit and intensely massaging an area of pain can cause secondary pain for the coming days.60 minute sessions allow for the balancing of complex biomechanical issues, integrating the surrounding muscles, and allowing the mind to have enough downtime for a mini reboot or rest. Longer lasting effects result from longer sessions, and short sessions generally only offer mild pain relief.

7) Mismanage your body – post-massage

Receiving a good deep tissue massage treatment can leave you feeling great. You can feel more youthful and ready to get stuck into physical challenges again. However, overdoing it after your massage can reverse all the good that you may have accomplished and even make painful conditions feel worse. Schedule your massage for a time that integrates with your diary and fits in with how massage works! Late evening appointments can allow you to carry the relaxed muscle state into bed and allow a proper release of tension, or perhaps your lifestyle may suit an early morning or lunchtime slot.