Frequently Asked Questions

Standard Questions and Answers About Reiki and Massage

massaging a female clients upper back

Do I have to be completely undressed?

You should undress to the level you are comfortable. For a full body massage, most get completely undressed. However, if you will be more comfortable during the session if you leave your underwear on, that’s fine. The therapist will work around the clothes you left on as best as he/she can. If removing all your clothes makes you too nervous and unable to relax, then you are not getting the optimal benefit from the session. Your massage therapist should give you privacy to undress and get comfortable on the table.

female laying on massage table having masseuse work neck

Do I have to cover myself with a sheet or towel?

This is known as draping and depends on the therapist and in some cases, the law. The vast majority of therapists will insist on draping. Once you are undressed and on the table under the drape, the therapist will only uncover the part of your body being worked on.
The genitals (women and men) and breasts (women) will not be uncovered. If the therapist is going to work on a woman’s abdomen, a second towel or sheet will be used to cover the breasts so the main sheet or towel can be moved to expose the abdomen.

female client laying on massage table in a peaceful setting

What do I do during a massage treatment?

Make yourself comfortable. If your therapist wants you to adjust your position, she/he will either move you or will ask you to move what is needed. Otherwise, change your position anytime to make yourself more comfortable. Many people close their eyes and relax completely during a session; others prefer to talk. It’s up to you. It is your massage, and whatever feels natural to you is the best way to relax. Do not hesitate to ask questions at any time.

massage therapist rubbing upper back of elderly lady

Can I talk during my session?

Sure, if you’d like to talk go right ahead. The important thing to remember is that this treatment is all about you relaxing and enjoying the experience. Many therapists discourage talking in hopes that you will relax, let your mind float free and enter a state of massage bliss.
In many instances, people may feel more relaxed starting off talking, and as the massage progresses, enter quiet states of relaxation.

The important issue here is that there are times when you need to speak up. If the therapist is doing anything to make you uncomfortable, you should let her/him know immediately. Also, let him/her know if you get too warm or too cold, if the room is too bright, or if the pressure needs to be changed (lighter or deeper). If something is not working for you – speak up! It’s OK!

masseuse working back and shoulder blade of male client

How will I feel after my massage treatment?

Most people feel very relaxed. Some experience a significant decrease or freedom from long-term aches and pains. Many feel a little slowed down for a short period and then notice an increase of energy, heightened awareness and increased productivity which can last for days. If you received a deep massage, you may be slightly sore the next day – much like a good workout at the gym. Sometimes a hot shower or a soak in the tub can ease this soreness. After your session, you should increase your water intake a bit. Just a glass or two more than normal is usually fine. This helps keep your body’s tissues hydrated and healthy.

massage therapist rubbing shoulders of a female client

When should I not get a massage?

In my opinion, there are a few conditions which would prevent you from enjoying the massage. You should not book a massage if you have a fever, cold/flu, or contagious skin infection. That’s it.

There are many other conditions in which your therapist may need to adapt his/her techniques (i.e. arthritis or osteoporosis) or avoid an area completely (i.e. cuts or burns). With some conditions, it is a good idea to get an approval from your physician before you receive massage (cancer, certain heart conditions, pregnancy). This doesn’t mean you can’t get a massage. But its always better to err on the side of caution. Your therapist can advise you about your specific needs.

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