In spite of the different fields that people work in, the daily routine that everyone follows is pretty much the same. When your alarm clock goes off, you barely have time to exercise, shower and prepare and eat your first meal of the day. At your workplace, it is rare to see your desk empty as new projects come before you can complete the existing ones. If there are suffocating deadlines to meet, you might have to stay past the eight-hour mark to finish all the work. Thus, once you hit the road and reach your home, you may not even get to remove your clothes before passing out in bed.
Massage therapy has a multitude of benefits, and you might be interested to try it for yourself. According to a study by Tiffany Field, PhD, “Massage therapy is one of the most effective and widely used alternative therapies. Although most massage therapy sessions are for pain, recent research suggests that it is effective for other conditions including growth of premature infants, ADHD, depression, and immune conditions, most especially cancer.”
In case you have only gotten a glimpse of a massage room on TV, and you’re about to try it now, many questions may be running in your head. After all, it’s hard to believe that you only need to lie down on the table and the masseuse already knows what you want.
Isn’t it mesmerizing how a believer and non-believer of massages talk about the practice?
The former goes, “Hey, there’s a new spa around the corner. Let’s try their massage therapy on Saturday – it will be my treat.” Then, the latter waves his or her hand and says, “Ugh, take someone else with you. Watching Netflix and eating a box of pizza on my own is my kind of weekend.”
Well, first of all, that is sad. Instead of hanging out with real people, you choose to binge-watch and gain extra pounds. Second of all, a friend is giving you a chance to get a massage for free. You only need to be at the place and let people take care of you. It’s not stress-free to find a generous fellow like that.
Nevertheless, it is apparent that you won’t ever go to a spa for no other reason even if anyone offers to pay you a million bucks. Thus, we have compiled the signs that a massage may be a necessity in your life right now.
- You Rarely Leave Your Work Desk
No matter what your job is, your posture when you are working in front of a computer or writing notes is the same as everyone else’s. You slightly bend your head down to see what you are doing correctly. Your shoulders curve forward, depending on how far your arms are from the table. Your spine may also be arching backward often when you don’t catch yourself slumping a bit. And all of these things you with your butt plastered on a chair for more or less eight hours.
Over time, your body will remember this type of posture, and it will be a challenge for you to straighten out your back and neck. That is why you need a massage – to have a professional relax your muscles, to the extent that you’ll be able to sit and walk straight easily again.
“Maybe your lower back aches from sitting too much in front of a computer. Massage can be a sumptuous delight that treats your body’s aches and pains,” wrote Stephen L. Salter, PsyD.
- You Cannot Sleep Well
Some assume that sleeping is one of the most effortless tasks in the world. You lie down, and sleep naturally comes to you. Play soft music, and you can doze off like a baby.
However, you cannot underestimate how hard it is to shut your eyes and drift off to la-la land when your muscles are aching. If it’s your legs, you don’t know whether you should go into a fetal position or keep them dangling out of bed. If it’s your back, you may only be able to rest after putting many pillows underneath you or laying sideways.
The thing is, you cannot take mefenamic acid or sleeping pills forever to relieve the pain. They may have side effects, which will appear months or years later. You better allow a masseuse to soothe your tensed muscles so that sleeping won’t be a hassle for you.
Researches have shown how effective massage can be for various health concerns. Tiffany Field, PhD, wrote, “[I]n a study on pain management in hospital inpatients from medical, surgical and obstetrics units, significant reductions in pain were reported (50% reduction on visual analog scales) accompanied by less sleep disturbance.”
- You Feel Stressed Out On A Daily Basis
Don’t you notice a drastic change in your behavior when stress overwhelms your system?
Your typically patient self-becomes temperamental. You hold grudges to people around you even if their single mistake is putting the billing statements on the table or not getting your coffee. Of course, your work performance is not as faultless as before, which may make you even madder and sadder at once.
When everything seems to fall apart for you, perhaps all you truly need is a simple massage. You should relax your muscles to let go of your worries. You cannot do that when you’re staying at home, brooding and throwing popcorn at characters on TV.
James Lake, MD, shared, “In my own clinical experience working with patients who complain of chronic stress, test-taking stress and generalized anxiety, regular massage therapy effectively reduces anxiety, improves emotional resilience and enhances feelings of general well-being in anxious patients.”
When you get past the mental image of lying in a table almost entirely naked and letting a masseuse rub you down, you will see that it is good for your well-being. Hopefully, though, the realization will come quickly, especially if you look at these signs within you.
Massage therapy involves the art of kneading your sore and stiff muscles to allow the blood to flow through your body tissues. “Massage is widely used in all cultures to evoke feelings of deep relaxation and reduced anxiety,” wrote James Lake, MD. You come to the spa when you cannot straighten your back even though you do not have spinal issues. A rubdown after a full day of labor can also revitalize your system and keep you from getting consumed by stress.
Despite the number of massage places that have sprouted in almost every block, though, it remains challenging to find one with trustworthy masseuses. Some hire new therapists who do not have experience in the field. Others act unprofessionally and talk your ear off about the establishment’s “organic” products and other stuff they sell.
So when you are looking for a massage therapist that you can count on anytime, you should try doing the following.
Know What You Need
Your initial course of action is to figure out why your body is in need of a great massage. “Most people get a massage in order to relax, perhaps a pleasurable way to unwind after a long work week. Others go to address some physical discomfort or injury. Maybe your lower back aches from sitting too much in front of a computer,” wrote Stephen L. Salter, PsyD. Are you exhausted from work? Are your muscles sore from playing sports? Did you notice how bad your posture is getting, and you wish to have it corrected?
Many types of massage therapies are out there. You will be able to meet the best therapist for you faster when you focus on the professionals who might know what you want to be done.
Go To Different Spas
Once you are sure about the kind of massage that you need, you should then visit various massage centers that offer it. Just like when you do experimentations in a science lab, you have to have at least three trials before you make a deduction. You cannot settle for the spa that is closest to your place, primarily if you do not like their services deep down.
Ask About Their Experiences
The thing is, you can get to know a therapist before you even lie down on the massage table. While he or she is preparing stuff in the room, you may inquire if he or she has worked with someone who has the same case as you. In case your masseuse can list the number of times he or she encountered a similar client and speak of how that person improved after a few sessions, then you might feel more inclined to try getting a massage from him or her.
Be Specific About Your Wants
According to Jeffrey E. Barnett, PsyD, ABPP, and Allison J. Shale, MS, “There are several different types of massage, each utilizing slightly different techniques. For example, Swedish massage, the most commonly used form of massage in the United States, involves ‘a combination of long strokes, kneading motion and friction on the layers of muscle just beneath the skin’.”
No matter how skillful the masseuse is, you should not assume that he or she will be able to guess how you want your massage. For example, do you want soft or hard kneading? Where does it hurt? Although the therapist will essentially rub you down all over – if you get a full-body massage, that is – you have to inform the masseuse about your preferences as the session continues.
Get Recommendations From Friends
With massage therapy being a mainstream practice, there is a possibility that some of your friends know a masseuse that they can refer to you. It is ideal if the therapist has been working with them for a while. The number of months or years that your buddies invested on the masseuse can tell you how good he or she may be in this profession. After all, nobody will stick with a massage therapist who does not know how to do his or her job, especially when you can look for a better one elsewhere.
Stop telling yourself that perhaps you are merely not used to getting massages; that’s why you feel uncomfortable. A masseuse who’s worthy of your trust will not do anything to make you uneasy. He or she will notice how tensed your muscles are and ask whether you want to resume the massage or have it next time.
Remember these things when you are looking for a trustworthy masseuse.
When you have already passed the first quarter of your life and you don’t want to reach the second one without trying the full-body massage for the first time, there is no better opportunity for it than now. Various types of massages, after all, are known for helping a person relax knotted muscles all over the body. Continue reading “Helpful Tips To Appreciate Your First Full-Body Massage”