Massage therapy is a healing art which helps treat physical areas where a client may have a problem or feel discomfort. While a relaxing massage is usually beneficial, sometimes an improper technique or approach can make a client feel more stressed and may even stop them from returning for future massages.
Professional massage therapists tend to be considerate and compassionate by nature, but even the best intentions can have unintended consequences. In order to avoid any conflicts or unhappy clients, it’s important to be aware of potential issues as well as their causes.
If you’re considering a career as a massage therapist, read on to learn about some of the most common mistakes a massage therapist can make and how you can avoid them.
1. Keeping an Uncomfortable Massage Space Turns Clients Away
The atmosphere of a room can affect a client’s sense of relaxation just as much as their actual massage. An uncomfortable massage table, overwhelming aromatic smells and an unclean office can prevent clients from returning.
It’s important to invest in a good table with a comfortable face cradle, which will help your clients relax fully during their massage. Maintaining a tidy office and clean equipment is also critical as it gives your workspace a professional atmosphere and communicates to clients that you put care and consideration into your work. A massage room should also have a pleasant smell that isn’t strong or overwhelming. This can be achieved through essential oil diffusers or lightly scented candles.
2. Forgetting Your Lessons from Your Massage Therapy Program
During you massage therapy training, you’ll learn about body mechanics, which is how the human body moves during daily activities such as sitting, lifting, bending and sleeping. Many of your future clients may have injuries due to poor body mechanics, such as chronic back pain from poor posture or a strain from lifting something heavy, and it’s important to remember which specific techniques you need to appropriately address areas a client may be having issues with.
In order to determine the best method of treatment to use, however, you must first understand how the muscles in the body operate and how exactly they can be strained or hurt.
Students at Oxford College benefit from hands-on practical training
The comprehensive learning approach that you’ll receive in Oxford College’s massage therapy program ensures you’ll gain an in-depth knowledge of the appropriate methods and techniques to be used during a client’s treatment. Additional work placements also provide the practical experience and training to help you learn about body mechanics in a real work environment.
3. Miscommunication Can Make for a Bad Massage Therapist Career
Every client is different and has certain preferences or dislikes that influence how they want to be treated. No matter the reason, it is important to encourage communication between yourself and your client and respect their requests.
Massage therapists should listen to and respect the concerns of their clients
A successful and lasting massage therapist career is based around trust between you and your clients. Before you begin a massage, advise clients to let you know if the pressure is too light or firm or if anything makes them uncomfortable during their treatment. Good communication allows you to know how best to treat your clients’ needs and helps build a sense of trust that keeps clients coming back for your services.
4. Letting Your Mind Wander during Massage Therapy
Having a strong ability to focus is an important factor in effectively addressing a client’s aches and pains. Any client would be upset if a sore muscle was left partially untreated or ignored, and you are more capable of correctly identifying and addressing areas of stress or tension when you pay close attention to how a muscle or tissue feels in the present moment.
Clients don’t want to feel as if their needs aren’t being considered or addressed properly. Keeping yourself in the present moment by taking your time and using appropriate massage techniques – from trigger point therapy to treating soft tissues and joints – means that your client will leave you feeling happy and relaxed, and he or she will likely return for your services.
Do you want to begin a rewarding massage therapy career?
Contact Oxford College to find out how you can earn your massage therapy diploma.