Frequently Asked Questions
Should I do anything before the massage?
Don’t eat too much just prior to the massage. DO drink lots of water – always a good idea – though not immediately prior since you won’t want to have to “go” in the middle of the massage. Also, make sure you have set aside time for the massage so that you can relax and not be distracted. If possible, you might take a hot bath or shower or sit in a hot tub to loosen up your muscles. Some of my clients may be working on physical or emotional issues, and like to bring an “intention” to the massage. Feel free to discuss this with me if you would like.
What about medical conditions?
Tell me about areas of your body that are injured, tense or sore. Also mention any medical conditions, such as high blood pressure, a heart problem, chronic headaches, or recent surgery. Some people with some serious medical conditions should not receive massage, and if you have concerns about this, you should discuss it with your doctor before getting a massage.
Is this a full body massage?
Yes, usually. Before the massage, I will ask you if you have any areas that need particular attention. This will allow me to focus on those areas, as well as do more general work on other parts of your body. The session is tailored to you, so if you want me to spend more time in some places (eg., back, shoulders) and less time in others, I am happy to do that.
How long does the massage last?
I offer sessions that are 60 or 90 minutes long. Unlike at a spa where an hour means 50 minutes, you will receive the full amount of time on the table. Also, allow some extra time since we will chat a little before the massage, and to give yourself time to get off the table without rushing.
Will I be completely undressed?
Most people are. The best way to receive a massage is with the body completely unclothed. However, people have different modesty levels and if you want I will keep your body covered with a top sheet except for the area being massaged. You may also wear underwear if that is comfortable for you.
Will you also be completely undressed?
I wear shorts and a t-shirt.
What should I do during the massage?
Close your eyes and allow yourself to relax as completely as possible. Focus your attention on your breathing, which should be slow, deep and even. Allow me to move your limbs into various positions. Be limp, like a rag doll, and do not try to help move your arms, legs or head. Please feel free to speak up if anything I do is painful, ticklish, or uncomfortable in any way. Also feel free to tell me if there’s something you particularly like. When I locate areas of pain or tension in your body, consciously try to relax those areas. As you inhale softly and deeply, visualize the breath flowing to the tense area and relaxing it. As you fully exhale, visualize the tension leaving the body with the breath. Feel free to sigh, as it helps me to know which parts of the massage feel best for you, and helps you release tension. Relax and enjoy the massage and just let go..
What about conversation during the massage?
Conversation is fine, especially if you are still getting comfortable with the massage. You may also have some questions relating to the massage that I am happy to answer. Otherwise, it’s nice to enjoy the quiet and focus on the massage itself. I am fine either way, and I will follow your lead as to whether we talk during the massage.
What if I fall asleep?
Many people fall asleep during a massage, an indication that the body and mind are releasing stress and tension. If you fall asleep, I will gently rock you from time to time so that you don’t miss too much.
Does deep tissue massage hurt?
Unless you have a specific injury that needs very deep work, deep tissue does not need to hurt. My goal is to take a tense muscle right to the edge, to that depth where it “hurts so good”. I work slowly so you can adjust to the pressure. I want you to be able to relax into the pressure and not resist me, which is counter-productive. Everyone is different, and I can tailor the level of pressure to what works best for you.
What is Esalen?
Esalen is a style of massage that is based on the idea that the body and mind are connected and that relaxation takes place on many levels simultaneously. It uses long nurturing strokes that feel very comforting. My typical massage incorporates this style in with deeper work to make it effective, but also deeply relaxing.
What gift can I get the person who has everything?
How about a gift certificate for a massage!