Questions to ask Yourself before interviewing Massage Therapists:
- What do I want out of the session?
- Do you want to just de-stress, work out some really big knots, or focus on an injury, or a combination of things?
- Do you like to chit chat or do you want to be silent and just let go during your session?
- Do you like to feel nurtured and cared for in a session or are you a no-nonsense client that just wants to get the work done?
- Every therapist has their strengths and weaknesses and just like in romance, there is someone for everyone in the bodywork world.
- Getting clear on your needs and desires before interviewing will give you a much better chance of finding that perfect therapist.
As a massage therapist who hires therapists for my business and a very picky client, I always look for these qualities. Having been highly successful myself in my practice offering these qualities, I believe that this is what delivers a great massage, every time!
First and foremost, are they warm, open-hearted, and confident, yet humble? The worst massages I ever got were from therapists who had every certification in the books and many years of experience but were cocky, rigid, and ego-centric. They had their way of giving a massage, their idea of what worked and what was best for me, and didn’t listen to what I was asking for. Some of the best messages I have received were from therapists that just graduated or went to alternative training. They listened openly and were flexible and willing to do what it took to make me comfortable. Years of experience and a diverse background are wonderful and that can bring a lot to the session if they are service-oriented and attentive.
Ask the therapist what their ideal client is. This may throw them off but will give you a good sense of who they are and how they approach their work. If the answer is too rigid and doesn’t sound at all like you, that is a good clue that it is probably not a good fit.
Trust your gut. This is a person who will be touching your naked body for a full hour or more. Do you like the sound of their voice and the feeling that you get when you talk with them? Do they sound genuinely interested in you and what you are needing? Are they asking you questions and listening to your answers?
The truth is, you can’t be completely sure until you actually get the message, but the biggest mistake most people make is that they don’t tell the therapist what they want or how they are feeling, such as “OUCH! Don’t do that! It hurts!!” Or, “OH YEAH!! DEEPER PLEASE!!!”
Just remember, the therapist can’t be expected to read your mind, and nobody is the same. So if they are a good therapist, they are going to want to know. They are at your service, and you are probably paying them a lot of money. You are the boss of your body and they are there to honor you and your needs, not be the expert and do their thing.
Wishing you a wonderful massage experience.
Velina Lujan, MA, CMT, CDH
Stress Management Services