Massage Etiquette

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The word 'massage' is derived from a Greek word masso, which means 'to touch'. This form of therapy is being followed since ages, and is one of the best means of relaxation relating to body and mind. The person on whom the massage therapy is being performed has to be very comfortable with it, and has to follow the massage etiquette, as the main purpose behind it is relaxation. Massage is also a healing therapy for the people who are suffering from muscle diseases, and disorders such as muscle pain, chronic pain, sprains, strains, back pain, muscle fatigue, chronic muscle disorders, etc.

Massage means rubbing or pressing of body parts especially to increase blood circulation, relax the muscles, and provide sensual stimulation. This therapy is being followed since ancient civilizations, and has come from different countries and regions in the world, but however, the basic purpose of performing it is common to all the regions. There are different massage therapies which have originated from different regions, such as acupressure, a Chinese massage therapy, Anma from Japan, Ayurveda from India which is a very famous oil massage technique, deep tissue massage from Thailand, and Lomi Lomi from Hawaii, and myofascial release massage, etc. Massage means manipulation of the muscle layers and tissues to promote relaxation, and remove stress.


However, a beginner who is planning to go for a massage has a lot of questions, queries, and doubts in his mind related to his clothes, body structure (being overweight), and skin disorders (stretch marks and pimples), etc. It becomes very important for both, the client and the therapist to follow proper massage etiquette, so that it makes the client feel comfortable and free to reveal his likes, dislikes, and what body parts to emphasize on. It also makes the therapist feel comfortable to give suggestions and perform the therapy with ease.


Massage Etiquette Tips for Clients And Therapists


  1. Fixing The Appointment
    It is very necessary for a client to fix the appointment, and always reach a few minutes before time. This is always appreciated by the therapist, as the next client won't have to wait for too long for his turn. If a client is planning to cancel the appointment, it is always advisable to do it well in advance, and not at the last moment, so that the therapist gets the liberty to give that time to someone else who needs it.
  2. Disclosing Medical Condition
    Most probably, if you are a first time client, you need to fill out a form stating your medical history. This is important so that the spa has an idea about your medical health, if you have allergies, heart disease, asthma, etc., and can advice against any massage type that may be harmful.
  3. Discussing Important Points
    A therapist is always willing to know certain likes and dislikes of the client, what body parts the client wants him to emphasize on, and this is known as full body massage etiquette. There will be numerous occasions when the client would want the therapist to apply pressure on a particular body part. At times a client is not comfortable to be completely nude, and it is always advisable to undress to your personal level of comfort. Therefore, it is necessary to discuss all these things well in advance, and not in the middle of the therapy. It also becomes the duty of the therapist to give certain suggestions to the client regarding the flow of the therapy, and is considered to be a part of spa massage etiquette.
  4. Controlling Sexual Excitement
    It is very much possible that a male client may get an erection during a massage. This happens when the client is in a very relaxed state, and not because he is sexually excited. This can get very embarrassing for the client but it is not considered to be sexual misconduct. However, if a client has any plans of getting sexually excited with the help of the therapist, it comes under sexual misconduct, and the therapist has all the rights to terminate the therapy. At times, it can also be the other way round. There will be occasions when the therapist might take the first step, and try to excite the client. Then it becomes the duty of the client to tackle the situation, and be direct with the therapist.
  5. Tipping The Therapist
    This is something optional. It is just a gesture to show that the massage was satisfying and the client totally liked it. This is still not mandatory, but is something most of the clients do to express their happiness and satisfaction. It will also build goodwill and make you feel more welcome for future appointments.
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