Massage therapy is an alternative form of treatment that can help reduce stress, improve circulation, relax tense muscles and even lower blood pressure. Despite the benefits that this type of therapy offers, there are many misconceptions out there about what massage therapy is and how it is conducted. Read on for some of the most common myths associated with massage therapy.
Myth: A massage Therapist is Also Known as a Masseuse
Massage therapists receive educational training and certification while the term “masseuse” is typically used to refer to anyone who performs massages professionally with or without formal training. “Masseuse” is actually considered an outdated way to refer to massage therapists and has negative connotations associated with it. It also tends to describe those who give massages for leisurely purposes, rather than those who perform therapeutic massages for health conditions. Unlike a masseuse, a massage therapist receives training in several health-related areas, including anatomy, pathology and physiology.
Myth: Clients Aren’t Covered Up During Treatment
Massage therapists learn how to drape clients during a massage treatment in order to protect their privacy. The only part of the body that’s uncovered is the area that’s being massaged unless the client requests to remain covered. It’s also important to remember that massage therapists concentrate on easing muscle tension and aren’t focused on what clients look like. They would also like you to know that no one they’ve seen has a perfect body, so clients shouldn’t worry about any physical flaws they have.
Myth: Clients Have to Keep the Conversation Going
Clients aren’t expected to talk to their massage therapist during their treatment. In fact, they don’t have to talk at all. Massage therapists encourage those who feel more relaxed while talking to go ahead and start a conversation with them, but it’s not a requirement.
Myth: A Therapeutic Massage is All the Client Needs
Massage therapists study other aspects of well-being at massage school. Your massage therapist will recommend stretches and other therapeutic exercises to do at home to extend the benefits offered by your massage. It’s up to each client to follow these recommendations and do these exercises at home to keep feeling relaxed and healthy.
Myth: Clients are Expected to Shave Before Treatment
Since massage therapists are focused on easing muscle tension and helping clients feel healthier and more relaxed, they aren’t paying attention to physical appearances. Clients can come in without shaving their legs. If stubble is an issue, massage therapists have lotions and oils available to use during treatment sessions.
If you’re interested in becoming a massage therapist, finding a reputable massage school for instruction is important. At the American Institute of Alternative Medicine, we’ve been teaching massage therapy skills for more than 20 years. Contact us to learn more about our programs.