Is this weird?
Taking off your clothes in front of a professional and allowing your body to be touched requires
trust. Feeling unsure about what your therapist expects from you, or what they might be thinking
during the massage, could even put you off booking a session that your body needs to process stress or ill health.
Today I will be answering questions about massage therapy that you might have felt too
uncomfortable to ask. Putting your mind at ease is the first step to real relaxation, and arriving
prepared will ensure that you have a truly blissful experience!
1. I’m embarrassed about my moles, pimples and stretch marks. Do you find them off putting or difficult to work with?
No. These are common, normal, skin features. People who have these skin features get massages all over the world every day, and there’s no reason why your therapist would pay extra attention to
yours or find them unusual. A smooth, comfortable massage is not about your skin – it’s about
deeper muscle and mind relaxation.
2. What should I wear to my massage?
You can wear whatever you need or want to wear that day! It’s not necessary to wear loose clothing or gym gear. If your massage appointment is in the middle of your work day, or you are arriving with toddler food down your front, that just means you’ve made the right choice to come and unwind before facing the rest of the day.
3. I don’t like my feet/knees/butt being touched. It grosses me out. How can I be sure I won’t freak out or panic if I’m having a full body session?
If there is a part of your body that you would prefer was no-contact, let your therapist know before
your session, at the start, or even during it. Again, your relaxation and choices come first, and it’s
definitely not unusual to have a body part that you would prefer was not treated. Don’t hesitate to
speak up at any time – it won’t be offensive or surprising.
4. Should I keep my eyes open or closed? I’m not sure what’s normal.
Focus on your reason for being there. It’s about your relaxation, not wondering what the ‘done’
thing is. Both are completely normal. You can close your eyes for parts of the session, the whole
time, or not at all. Experiencing more than one session might help you to learn what feels most
comfortable for you.
5. What if I fall asleep? What if I snore?!
Falling asleep is a wonderful indication that you are really relaxed, and your massage has allowed
your body and mind to find peace. I will not find it amusing or awkward if you drift off. If you are
feeling extra tired before your session and you think going to sleep is a possibility, you can ask to be gently woken if this does happen, or you can just enjoy this time as pure rest.
6. Is requesting the same massage therapist or booking regular sessions creepy at all? I don’t want to weird you out by showing up all the time.
If you have found a therapist whose personality, techniques and manner really click with you, that is
a wonderful professional relationship to cherish. We tend to stick with the same hairdressers,
accountants, doctors and baristas when we find a good one who understands us, and massage
therapists are no different. If you feel like that your mental and physical health benefits from regular
sessions and you prefer one therapist over the others, don’t be shy to stick with them!
7. I don’t think I’m going to be able to relax fully because I might fart. What do I do?
Body pressure and body relaxation both might make you pass gas. If you’ve ever been to a yoga
class, you’ll know that farts just happen sometimes. So what? This is another normal thing that
bodies do. It’s not unusual and it’s probably not even the first time it’s happened in the clinic that
day. If you are really concerned about it, you can look up foods and drinks to avoid in the day or two prior to your massage. If you feel the need to pass gas during the session and it’s making you
anxious, you can always ask for a break to visit the bathroom.
8. Are you going to notice if I’m wearing special underwear to manage my period or bladder leaks?
Special underwear has come a long way in recent years, and a lot of the time now it just looks like
normal pants. The biggest concern that most clients have when they arrive for a massage is their
therapist being surprised by something unusual. Again – this is not unusual. Your body and how it
works is your business. If you want to mention it to your therapist because it makes you more
comfortable, go for it. Otherwise, don’t worry that you’re going to face any questions or be made to remove your undergarments.
9. I never know if my therapist wants to talk, expects me to talk, is happy for me to talk or will respect my wish for quiet. How do you figure this bit out?
Getting it right can be about finding the therapist that is a good match for you, and understanding
the style of massage. If it’s deeply meditative and calming, then talking through it won’t allow you to fully relax and immerse yourself in the experience. If you are having a massage to treat an injury,
talking about pressure and discomfort during the session might be useful for both of you. It’s like any
health or personal care relationship – you will develop an understand of each other’s personalities
and what feels right. If quiet time is really important to you, mention it when you’re booking your
session just to put your mind at ease that you won’t be expected to make small talk.
10. What if the contact on my body is painful, ticklish, cold or gives me goosebumps? What if it just feels a bit strange?
New hands on your body will always take some getting used to. Your therapist is trained in their
techniques. Even if they are new to it, they had to practise on a lot of people to become qualified! A good therapist will ask you during the session how it feels, and it’s important to be honest when
you’re asked that question.
If you feel uneasy about speaking your mind because it seems like you’re ‘correcting’ them, remember that your therapist is genuinely focused on your needs at that
moment. You could try saying “my back is really tender – is it ok if you go a bit lighter there?” or “I’m quite sensitive to cold – could you warm your hands a bit more?” If you feel like your therapist isn’t responding to your verbal feedback and body language, or their style just isn’t right for you, don’t be discouraged. Everyone is different, and a different therapist could be worth a try. Asking a question like “can you tell me what to expect” or “what’s your specialisation', of your next therapist might help you to know whether they are going to be the right one for you.
There are no silly questions...
If your question isn’t answered here, I hope I can at least reassure you that there are no silly
questions, and speaking up is the best way to put your worries to rest. Feeling anxious and unsure
about an upcoming massage session is a good indicator that there are questions you would like to
ask, but haven’t yet. Take that time to make contact, voice your thoughts, and ensure that when
your session day arrives, it really is the best experience it can be.
Wanting to know more or experience a Raindrop, Remedial or Relaxation massage?
Reach out to Larissa. Or you can book an appointment through the booking link or get in touch via the website. Looking forward to connecting.