I often hear from my massage clients that a great Massage Therapist is hard to find. Massage therapy has become extremely popular and therapists are in demand. Massage schools are everywhere and churn out more graduates each passing year. So why is a great Massage Therapist so hard to find? The answer is simple.
Massage therapy is not a job.
Massage therapy is a labor of love. In order to be effective and successful one must love the field, love clients, and love helping others in a meaningful way. People who take massage courses hoping to land a job are bound to be disappointed when they discover massage is very hard work. It is physically and mentally draining, and for most therapists the pay is low. There are certainly much easier ways to earn a paycheck. The marketplace is full of people who stumbled on massage while they were looking for a job. Clients have the unenviable task of trying to figure out who's who. Here are some tips to make that job a little easier.
If you are new to massage, become a more educated consumer. Naturally your therapist should have all the requisite certifications or licenses required by your state of residence. When it comes to touch, take the time to learn your likes and dislikes. Give yourself permission to try at least three different random massage therapists. Pay attention to what you did and didn't like about each session. Some questions you may want to ask after a session is:
What techniques felt good and seemed most effective? How did the surroundings influence your feelings about the session? Would you pay more for a luxurious environment or exceptional skill? Do you feel comfortable and at ease with this person? Were they caring or just going through the motions? Was the result worth the money? Once you're more familiar with your personal tastes you can use all of the remaining tips to find your massage therapist.
Be clear about the reason you are seeking massage. Are you looking for chronic pain treatment, basic relaxation, or regular therapeutic work to keep your body in optimal shape? What kind of results do you want? The answers to that question will help you decide whether to seek a massage in a spa, and independent studio, or with a therapist attached to a medical professional.
Don't go to a day spa expecting the massage therapist to fix your carpal tunnel. Conversely, don't show up at the massage studio expecting a fluffy robe and a seaweed wrap.
When I tell people I have a massage studio the next question they always ask is "Where is your spa?" People assume that if massage is available it must be a spa. This couldn't be more wrong. You can get a great massage at a spa. But you won't get the same focus and attention that would be offered by an independent massage therapist.
Take a leap of faith.
Don't allow a couple of bad massage experiences to put you off forever. Yes, there are bad massages out there. Even great therapists can have an off day. But we're all different and like different touch. It will take time to find the massage therapist who is great at what they do, meshes with your personality, and has the right price and location.
Often I hear people say that they want to get a massage but haven't because they don't know if it will be good. How can you know without trying? If you want to make massage a part of your life then you will eventually have to make the investment and give some therapists a try. The reward is well worth the time and money.