Thinking about scheduling your very first massage? Or maybe someone suggested you try it out for pain or stress relief? Well, cool! We’re super excited you’re trying new things, but we totally understand that new experiences can come with questions where the answers aren’t immediately obvious. First massages aren’t any different. If you’ve never had one before, the entire ordeal might seem a little strange or like you’re just expected to know things, but don’t worry - we found some of the most common questions folks have regarding massage therapy, and we’ll steer you in the direction of enlightenment.
What should I expect when I first arrive?
When you arrive for your appointment, our receptionist will greet you, offer you a glass of water or some tea, and have you fill out a two-sided intake sheet. The intake sheet goes over your basic “physical health/allergies/injuries” information that your massage therapist might need. Many of these points will be touched on verbally as well while you speak with your massage therapist about your goals (pain relief, relaxation, etc) for the session.
Do I have to get entirely naked?
Not at all! You can remain dressed to your level of comfort. Most clients undress to their lower underwear, while some prefer to be entirely nude or wear gym shorts and an undershirt. Your massage therapist will communicate what they’re comfortable with as well. We also practice proper “draping” techniques, which essentially means “any area your therapist isn’t actively working on will be covered” so you don’t have to worry about being unnecessarily exposed.
Should I make small talk? What if I make weird noises?
If you want to make small talk, go right ahead, but it’s far from required or expected. Massages are meant to help you relax, so if you’d rather focus on your breathing and meditation, cool - if you want to have a conversation about your day and the weather, cool! Weird noises happen and are expected. That being said, don’t make it too weird. We want to maintain a mutual respect and comfortability, so do your best to keep the overly sexual When Harry Met Sally noises under wraps.
Does getting a massage hurt?
Getting a massage can be uncomfortable, but should never extend past the “Hurt So Good” feeling. Your therapist will occasionally check in to make sure the level of pressure is feeling good, but if you’re in PAIN definitely let us know! If you’re unable to breathe through the pressure, you’re not getting the most out of your time. Everyone is different, and we’ll cater to your wants and needs.
Can I request a specific therapist?
For sure! If someone has been recommended to you or seems like a good fit, definitely let us know. If you don’t have someone in mind, our receptionist will often look at who is available during the time you’re requesting, as well as what type of work you’d like done. Each of our receptionists has had bodywork done by every massage therapist (what an awful job, right?) and thus can make recommendations accordingly.
What happens if I get an erection?
Honestly, it happens. It’s totally normal for a person to experience an erection during a non-sexual therapeutic massage, and it’s no reason to be embarrassed. Any touch has the potential to activate the parasympathetic nervous system resulting in an erection. Your massage therapist is a professional and will ignore it.
When should I NOT get a massage?
Massage isn’t for everyone at any time. There are some conditions where you should avoid massage therapy. Some of them include deep vein thrombosis, significant fever, recent surgeries, severe sunburn, untreated severe hypertension, and it’s recommended you check with your doctor before booking a prenatal massage. When in doubt, check with your doctor!
Should I tip my therapist?
As with a hairdresser, tattoo artist, waitress, mover, etc - tipping is super appreciated, but not required. The industry standard is 15-20% if you were happy with your experience.