The stress and tightness in your body must go… it’s time for a massage!

Make the most of your precious time on the massage table with these no fail strategies that will extend your relief and relaxation.

1. Schedule carefully. 

Choose a time when you can relax after your massage is over.  Your body and mind continue to integrate the experience for hours after the session. And, you’re not going to want to go back to work!

2. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.

Drink plenty of water before and after your session.  A well hydrated body allows the tissue to be softer and more flexible. Water is life!

3. Start with a clean palette.

Take a warm bath or hot shower before your session.  The hydrotherapy will soften your tissue and, a clean body allows a clear space for the practitioner to work.

4. Plan your meals around the session.

It can be uncomfortable to have a full belly on the massage table, eating light is recommended. Massage relaxes your body so it functions more efficiently, you may be hungry after your session. Eat healthy, nourishing food.

5. Think about your goals.

Do you need to relax from stress you are experiencing or, do you have a specific issue you would like addressed?  Thinking about what your needs are before your session will help you communicate them clearly, this helps the practitioner make an effective game plan.

6. Speak up.

Giving feedback during the massage is important. If you have the urge to grin and bear it, don’t! Your therapist is counting on you to speak up if something needs to change during your session. Everyone is unique, what feels good to one, may not to another. You may need more, or less, pressure. A blanket or a fan.  Different music, a sound level adjustment, or even no music. Your individual needs are paramount to having a fantastic bodywork session.

7. Give yourself quiet time.

Take 30-60 minutes for yourself before diving back into life.  It’s like having a meal, even when you are done eating your body is still processing the nutrients.  Let your body and mind integrate the session, this extends its benefits.

8. Be aware of your environment.

Releasing tension is amazing and, it may leave you feeling very open and free which can create a vulnerability to external sources. Take care when you interact with others right after your massage. If you can, limit your time with large groups of people after your session.

9. Pay attention to your thoughts and feelings.

Bodywork can accelerate the process of releasing pain, emotion, and even trauma that your body has been holding for you. Take note of any different thought processes, feelings, memories or dreams during the days following the massage. This type of healthy movement can lead to deeper release and healing and can be helpful to discuss at your next session.

10. Reschedule in a timely manner.

Bodywork is cumulative. It may have taken you years to get to the point when you decided you needed to take better care of yourself. It may take more than one session to address years of stress and tension built into your body.  The more you regularly receive bodywork, the more “trained” your body will become in relaxing.  Just like any physical practice, like dance or sport, the longer you train the better you get.  The more you practice relaxation, the easier it will be for you to call upon when you need it most!

Visit Rebecca Schulman’s website to learn more about the benefits of massage and bodywork>

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