Should you talk during a massage?

If you’re a regular massage user you will be familiar with the question “How do I (politely) get my massage therapist to shut up? Massage treatments can be utilised for a range of purposes from relaxation, pain management, sport performance enhancement and because it feels good. As a result the rules on when it’s good to have a talkative massage session versus when quietness is best are variable, and need to be responsive to the circumstances. In this article we’re going to provide advice on how to request silence and tips as when it’s appropriate to talk.


Is it okay to talk during a massage?

Yes it is, as the client you can choose to converse with your therapist whenever you want. If you want to talk, feel chatty or just want to be heard it can be an important part of the letting go process. It is an important aspect of your treatment to feel listened to, understood and that you have an engaging therapist to interact with. However, it is essential that conversations are client led. If your massage therapist is self-aware and professional they should be able to gauge when you’ve become quiet and allow you to have the space needed to breathe through a painful barrier or just relax your thinking process.

Why do some massage therapists talk to you while massaging you?  

If you’ve scheduled a deep tissue remedial or sports massage then it’s important for your therapist to feedback to you what they’re finding, how you’re responding and why they’re doing what they are doing. In that way they may check that you are comfortable or instruct you to take a deep breath. It doesn’t have to be conversational and a skilled massage therapist will normally give you a few pieces of information as a gentle running commentary for you to absorb whilst allowing you to  maintain a deeply relaxed state.

When is it not okay for your massage therapist to engage in conversation?

Some massage therapists like to talk a lot during the massage session. If the conversation is led by the therapist and they continually chit chat about their kids, problems, opinions and hobbies they may very well be devaluing your therapeutic experience and imposing their own boredom or social needs upon you. When you are attending a spa or have requested a deeply relaxing treatment it isn’t appropriate for your therapist to converse with you unless you initiate the talking. During a remedial massage, your therapist will have to explain certain treatment aspects and gain consent on pressure, etc, but this is easily distinguishable from sharing personal gossip, opinions and stories with you.

How to (politely) get your massage therapist to stop talking.

If having too much talk during your massage is stressing you out and taking you away from physically and mentally releasing, there are a couple of practical tips to help manage it. Inform your therapist at the beginning “I feel like I just want a quiet session today, can I check in with you after the session about what you found?” Alternatively you could say that you have something to think through and need some quiet time today, then the next time say, “I loved the quiet of the last session. Can we do that again?”

The luxury of having a regular self-aware massage therapist is that you never have to manage them. They seem to gracefully know when to talk and when to allow silence during the session. The fact is that not all massage therapists always take the cues and respond to what you need. Sometimes they talk because they’re tired, lonely or excited to catch up with you. What is essential is that you get the best level of care and an experience equal to the value that you are paying for. So if you do need to request some quiet time please remember to speak out and you will reap the reward.

If you would like to book a quiet massage and try out one our recommended phrases, then please give us a call on 020 8166 8958.