Your First Visit: What To Expect
For some, the idea of getting a massage can be unfamiliar and even intimidating. If you’re new to massage, this intro will help you understand what is involved in a treatment. Knowing what to expect is a great way to get more comfortable!
Before You Arrive
Make sure it is a good time for you to have a massage. Reschedule your visit if you have a fever, skin irritations (such as poison ivy or sunburn), or if you are trying to stabilize your medication (because massage can affect the dosage needed).
Before the Massage
Your first appointment begins with a confidential health history. You may want to arrive five minutes early to fill it out, or you can download the forms and fill them out before you arrive. Please be honest and complete—this information will help to determine if there are any reasons you should avoid massage or a particular technique. Massage therapy can also enhance or reduce the effect of pharmaceutical drugs and alcohol. All information you give is confidential.
Next I assess your posture, and do a few orthopedic tests to isolate your pain or discomfort. This will allow me to better design a treatment that meets your goals and preferences.
I will then outline what will happen in the session and leave the room so you can undress to your comfort level. Many first time clients worry about having to get undressed. Some clients prefer to completely disrobe, while some will remain partially clothed. You are always securely covered throughout your massage treatment. Only the area of the body being treated is uncovered.
When you are ready, lie down on the massage table and cover yourself with the top sheet. I will knock and make sure you are ready before re-entering. Your comfort and security are very important.
During the Massage
During the massage, I check in about comfort and pressure frequently, but please let me know if at anytime you are uncomfortable or would like me to change something in the treatment. Remember, you are in charge and can ask for changes or stop the session at any time.
After the Massage
At the end of the massage, I will leave the room so you can dress in private. Take your time getting off the table, especially if you feel light-headed, before you get dressed.
How you feel after the massage will depend on the style of massage used, the length of the treatment, and the demands you place on your body afterward.
Clinical types of massage may leave the body free from chronic tightness or acute pain patterns, but may replace it with a mild soreness from the pressure applied. After this type of massage, you may want to rest the area before jumping back into the activity that produced the soreness.
Realize that the benefits of massage tend to be cumulative, so typically, you will feel better after each subsequent treatment.