4 minute read
Should I stretch after a massage? What exercises should I do? What can I do to get rid of this pain? What postural changes should I make?
I get some version of these questions a lot, which is great! It means you are trying to be a more proactive client, advocating control and power towards your own health. I may not be the best resource for these answers. There are 3 reasons why.
1. There is not enough time to properly show you even one exercise before or after a massage. In order to give you the full 60 minutes hands on work, we really only have ideally, 4 minutes before and after your massage to chat. That is not enough time.
When you ask for a specific exercise for homework after a massage, it requires me to follow 3 simple steps. I have to ” tell, show, and do”. I verbally explain to you what the move is, hopefully clear and simple enough so you can understand my translation of the exercise. Then I need to show you the move, performing the move accurately so you can have a visual account. (There isn’t enough room for this.) Then we need to take time to have you perform the exercise accurately a few times over, while I make any postural adjustments necessary. Adjustments are the most important part of this experiment. You could go home and injure yourself, not understanding the proper engagement of what muscles should be involved with that exercise.
Ideally we would need a full 15 minutes for translation. We do not have that time together, unfortunately. You should go see a personal trainer or a Physical Therapist for any movement information. They have the proper amount of time to show you movements, that is their job and focus.
2. Application of new moves and exercises can be hard. Especially when you do not have the best “when” and “where” to apply said homework. You will not integrate new routines into your busy life if we have not discovered the easiest, most efficient application for change.
We would need to discuss your entire schedule, which we do not have time for. You need to know if you even have time to make a change. You may not, and that Is okay because you are already here reserving time for a massage! You will not be committed and consistent if you feel like the move is too much work, a chore, or just plain stupid because it does not realistically apply to your life. You are unique! Including what you choose to do with your time. Consistency is how you are going to see the change or the results you are looking for during any length of time. If I can’t commit to something, I can’t ask you to try, especially without the necessary information to even begin to implement change.
3. You are already getting advice from your family, friends, doctors, personal trainers, physical therapists. The list goes on. Trying to add more advice on to all the advice you already get, (on what you should or shouldn’t do to be “healthy”) is too much.
We already know we do not have enough time to begin the discussion on implementing more “stuff” on all of the crazy amounts of “stuff” you already do. Life is crazy, I know, and positive change is great, but the change we are talking about takes a really long time, after many, many moments of consistent, tiny changes. I say we stop trying to over analyze life together, and take a full hour or ninety minutes to forget about all that “stuff” and feel good. That is where you can get the most out of your massage.
Don’t get me wrong. I have got all the advice you need and then some, everyone you meet does. I have the background and training for all of the homework you can handle in a lifetime. That is not the point. I would rather you leave my session feeling a little more relaxed, and maybe, with some of your own answers to your questions. I would rather you build upon your own truth and self awareness. That is my ultimate goal for any client, after any massage. Don’t take my advice. I know that you know yourself way better than I ever could. Less homework means WAY more time for yourself = better results & WAY more fun!