What to expect at your sports massage or remedial massage session.
If you haven’t had much experience with massage therapy, you might be wondering what to expect so I hope this will give you some idea of what takes place during a “typical” massage session.
If it’s your first massage, you will be asked a few questions. These will be general questions such as the reasons you are getting a massage, current physical condition, medical history, life style and stress level, experiences with specific areas of pain, and whether there is any specific need you want addressed during the massage. It is important at this stage to make sure there aren’t any conditions present that rule out having a massage due to any health risks. It is also important to know what your needs are regarding the massage and clarify your expectations for the session as well as determine what techniques to use and how to structure the session.
I will have a look at the problem area and compare affected and unaffected sides of the body. You may need to remove outer layers of clothes for the problem to be inspected fully.
“Palpation”, or feeling the affected area, checks for any muscle imbalance and the integrity of the surrounding joints and muscles.
If the source of problem is not immediately obvious, some movements of joints will be performed in order to try and highlight the exact area of concern.
You will be asked to remove your clothing as necessary and you will, of course, be provided privacy while you undress. A towel is provided for draping during the massage. Only the part of the body being massaged will be uncovered, ensuring that modesty is respected at all times. The draping will also keep you warm during the massage. You should also remove any jewelry or other clothing that might interfere with the massage.
The massage takes place on a comfortable, padded massage table. You will be instructed as to which position you will be required to lie in on the table. The table may have some extra cushions to enable you to be as comfortable as possible.
Oil is used during the massage to reduce drag on the skin while performing the massage strokes.
Depending on your needs, the massage will involve either the full body or only specific areas that need attention. For example, general relaxation or stress reduction usually includes all the major areas of the body, while a session for localised injury, pain, or tightness will be focused on a specific area. It is possible to spend most of an entire session on only one area. If there is anything that does not feel comfortable or right or you do not like, please say so.
These are movements performed after the massage while the muscles are still soft and warm. The mobilisations are designed to complement the massage and aid the recovery process.
For the best recovery, it may be necessary for you to do some exercises between treatments, particularly if you are involved in sports, or your day-to-day job involves physical effort.
After the massage is finished you will once again be provided with privacy in order to get dressed. The usual length of a session lasts between 40-60 minutes.