"Do your hands, thumbs or back ache after a massage?"
Posted on 26th March 2017 at 10:00
We get asked a lot of questions about our job, and one of the most common ones is “do your hands, thumbs or back ache after a massage?”
We hear this on a daily basis, as we are sure most massage therapists do. Like any physical job there is an element of getting used to using your body which takes time. Ask any sports massage therapist in their first week of full time work how their legs are feeling and we are sure they will say 'a little sore'!
The answer however, is no, our hands and backs don't ache - or they shouldn’t.
It's about working smarter!
We are all taught when training to become a therapist about the importance of putting your body weight behind the strokes so this becomes the main focus of pressure. We also 'stack joints' this is where you make sure that the body part you are using (thumbs or wrists) have a second thumb or wrist to take some of the pressure. With stacking joints comes the ability to be able to keep your back in a neutral position - very important when you are massaging all day. This, combined with a lot of squatting and lunging rather than leaning over client’s, means our backs are protected (and as a bonus you build great muscle tone in your legs!)
Making sure we stick to these basic principles allows us to do multiple massages in a day without pain, offering the same consistency of pressure and concentration regardless of whether you are our first client or our last client.
We talk to our clients about the importance of good body mechanics, and it applies to us as well! We attend refresher training workshops twice a year with Fire & Earth and this helps us check each others posture, share ways to improve our posture or make sure we aren’t falling into bad habits.
So next time you see your therapist, don’t worry, they are doing just fine, but thank you for asking!
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