Your first massage appointment is very exciting. The opportunity to ease tension is always something to look forward to. But, like any new experience, it can also be a little nerve-wracking when you don’t know what to expect.
Here are some pointers for your first appointment:
Show up a few minutes early
Massage therapy is a therapeutic service and there are details that your therapist will need to know about you so there will be paperwork to fill out. Some of this is standard contact information while other details are related to your expectations for the appointment (medical massage versus relaxation), medical history since some current medical conditions may have contraindications for massage, and areas where you are experiencing issues. All of these details are essential for your therapist to provide the most effective treatment.
Undress to your comfort level
There is no denying that massage is best when therapists can touch your skin, since it allows them the best opportunity to feel what’s going on under the skin. Massage therapists are trained in draping techniques (at Healing Touch Charlotte we always use a full sheet and blanket) to provide coverage for areas of the body that are not being worked on, and your privacy and comfort is a top priority. However if you are not comfortable nude or in your underwear on the table you can still be treated while wearing a t-shirt and shorts. Do what makes you most comfortable because the experience is meant to relieve tension, not create it.
Get under the sheet
This one is fairly self-explanatory but cannot be overlooked. Most massage tables are made up of a bottom sheet, top sheet, blanket and bolsters (pillows that support your ankles when face down and knees when face up). Your therapist will tell you which way to lie on the table before leaving the room. Once you are undressed, get under the sheet (and blanket) and wait for your therapist to return.
Communicate with your therapist
Always communicate your needs and expectations to your therapist. Let them know if you have a specific area you want worked on during a session (an appointment dedicated to only neck, back, and shoulders is ok), if you have any areas that are sensitive or where you do not want work done, and level of pressure. You won’t hurt your therapist feelings if you tell them you would like lighter or firmer pressure or if you find something uncomfortable.
Please let us know if you have any other questions about what to expect from your first (or any other) massage therapy appointment.