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2023

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2023

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Introduction

    Massage therapists are health care providers that use an array of techniques to promote relaxation, relieve pain, and increase flexibility. They're required to undergo intensive schooling in anatomy and massage techniques before working with clients, and they must have up to 2,000 hours of practicum, during which they treat patients under the supervision of a trained massage therapist.

    While some massage therapists strictly specialize in relaxation massage, others have undergone extensive training to treat specific injuries and conditions using a variety of techniques, including reflexology, deep tissue, and cupping. Other specializations massage therapists may offer include hot stone massage and hydrotherapy.

  • What do massage therapists do? 

    Massage therapists use techniques such as stroking, kneading, and rubbing muscles to release tension. This can cause increased mobility and flexibility and a dramatic reduction in pain caused by tense or knotted muscles. Massage therapists often offer treatment to those experiencing day-to-day aches and pains as well as to athletes and individuals who've experienced severe injuries.

  • Is massage therapy safe? 

    While massage therapy is generally safe, individuals with underlying health conditions or injuries should discuss this treatment option with a primary or treating physician. This also applies to pregnant women who are interested in prenatal massage — while massage during pregnancy is considered safe, women with high-risk pregnancies may be advised to avoid massage.

  • Should I see a massage therapist or a chiropractor?

    When considering which practitioner to see for pain and other health concerns, it's important to note the differences between the two. While a massage therapist treats the muscles, a chiropractor's job is to ensure the spine is aligned by performing adjustments.

  • How do I hire a massage therapist? 

    Wellness clinics and chiropractic offices often employ massage therapists to increase services offered. If you're unable to find one at a local clinic, you can often obtain a referral from your primary care physician or other health care provider.

  • What are the types of massage therapies? 

    There are several types of massage therapy, each with a different purpose. While some, such as aromatherapy and hot stone massage, promote relaxation, others are more therapeutic. Each type of massage uses different techniques and levels of pressure. The most common types of massage therapies include:

    • Aromatherapy massage: Using Swedish massage techniques along with essential oils to enhance relaxation.
    • Deep tissue massage: Used to treat musculoskeletal issues and involves increased pressure and deep strokes.
    • Hot stone massage: Hot stones are laid on the muscles prior to massage to ease tense muscles.
    • Prenatal massage: Specialized massage technique for pregnant individuals.
    • Reflexology massage: Massage to pressure points in the feet and hands.
    • Sports massage: Targets injuries and strains for athletes.
    • Swedish massage: Relaxation massage that increases circulation throughout the body by manipulating soft tissues.

  • Is it normal for a massage to be painful? 

    While some muscles may feel tender during a massage, feeling pain while getting massaged isn't good or productive. In fact, pain can cause tension in your muscles, making it more difficult for the therapist to perform a proper massage. If feeling pain while being massaged, it's best to let the massage therapist know so they can reduce the amount of pressure they're using.

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