A day at a spa with massages is a day for health and relaxation. A massage therapist will help you achieve your goals for the day, with various general massage techniques as well as hot and cold stone therapy if you choose. The process works best if you participate in making the spa day go more smoothly.
1. Introduce yourself.
A massage therapist nearly always introduces herself, or a spa staffer introduces the therapist to you. She might even give you a brief overview of her experience and services if it is your first time at the spa. Do yourself a favor and interact with your massage therapist long before she reaches for the massage stones. Introduce yourself when you walk in, and mention the type of massages you like to have.
2. Talk about problem areas.
Before a massage, it is always helpful to talk about any pains and strains you have in your muscles. Discuss with the massage therapist whether hot stone therapy will loosen up the muscles and make them feel more comfortable. Chat about the possibility of combination therapy with both hot and cold massage stones to bring the blood to the surface and flush out inflammation. If you have painful joints or wounds, it is also a good idea to warn the massage therapist before she begins.
3. Set the tone for the session.
Some people like their massage to be all work. They want to talk about clinical effects of massage and the workings of the muscles. Others like to focus on relaxation in a quiet atmosphere. Still others like a friendly ambience in the room. Decide before you go into the spa setting which kind of environment suits you best, and set the tone right away. If you want friendliness, strike up a conversation. If you want quiet relaxation, stay as still as possible and do not talk much.
4. Give feedback during the massage if there are discomforts or problems.
Your massage therapist will tell you when to move as she places the massage stones on different parts of your body. She will rub your body with basalt stones for hot stone therapy or marble stones for cold stone therapy. As she massages the muscles of your body, you might feel unexpected tenderness in a tendon or joint. Always mention it to the massage therapist so that she can adjust her general massage to accommodate your special needs of the day.
5. Thank the massage therapist after the massage and tip if it is customary.
When the massage is over, it is important to acknowledge the good work of the massage therapist. Thank her for her services and tell her how the massage has benefitted you. Before you even went into the massage room, you should have asked the front desk staff the customs of that spa regarding tipping. Tipping amounts vary, and some massage therapists do not like to be tipped if they feel that their services should be classified as medical treatments. By knowing ahead of time, you can do the right thing to make your therapist happy, and end your day well at the spa with massages.
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