The massage and fascial release work which I offer promotes a state of deep relaxation which helps to reduce chronic pain and decrease stiffness and improve sleep.
Some clients come for help with chronic pain in specific areas – neck, shoulder, back and knee are common areas – but also with those with fibromyalgia and other inflammatory issues and with long term conditions such as MS and Parkinsons. My treatments have also helped those waiting for hip and knee replacements – massage doesn’t cure arthritis but it can help reduce the pain associated with it.
Others come to me for a profoundly relaxing massage which helps them to let go of the stresses of modern life and leaves them feeling both calmer and rejuvenated. My work is often slower than you may have been used to in other massages – this helps to encourage all of your systems to relax and to release calming and relaxing hormones.
Usually clients experience a reduction in pain and stiffness after the first treatment and this keeps improving with subsequent treatments. No-one wants to commit to a series of treatments without having some idea of how effective it will be so I suggest having an initial treatment to experience the way I work and to decide whether it’s right for you. There should be a reduction in pain levels and an increase in the range and scope of things you can do after the initial treatment. After that, depending on the nature of your pain and dysfunction I generally suggest a series of treatments in order to build on the initial improvement.
Like most experienced therapists I use a variety of techniques and methods drawn from the extensive training I’ve done over the years and tailored specifically to each session. Each treatment will be different as your body and mind will be different each time.
What is involved in a massage treatment? (for anyone who hasn’t tried massage before)
A first appointment with me is usually 15 minutes longer than usual to allow us to talk through your reasons for coming for massage and what you hope to get from the session. If you’ve come with a specific pain issue or long term condition I’ll ask you about that. We’ll also have a brief discussion of your medical history and I’ll ask you about any medication you’re taking, in case there are any issues which I need to bear in mind when treating you. I’ll explain what the treatment will involve and check that you’re comfortable with that.
Then I’ll ask you to get undressed down to your underwear and get onto the massage couch and under a towel and I’ll leave the room while you do that. You’ll always be covered by towels during the treatment, with just the area I’m working on uncovered.
I usually begin the massage with some work over the towels and then I’ll use a combination of techniques with and without massage oil or wax. I’ll often include techniques from traditional swedish massage as well as some stretching and other techniques from remedial massage. The oil or wax can include some blended aromatherapy oils if you’d like that.
I’ll check with you during the treatment how it feels to you. You may experience some strong sensations, particularly if you’ve come to me with a specific pain condition, but the sensations should feel positive. People often describe these as “good pain” or “releasing pain” and say “that feels like what it needs”. There should never be any “bad pain” or anything that feels too strong for you.
You may find if you’ve had massage elsewhere in the past that I work quite slowly compared with some therapists. I’ve learned that working slowly and specifically allows me to get deeply into problem areas without causing pain to the person receiving the treatment. Working slowly also allows the body to relax deeply, which not only helps the healing process but also feels very pleasant.
I’ll let you know when we’ve reached the end of the treatment and then I’ll leave the room for a few minutes to allow you to get dressed.
If getting on and off a massage table is likely to be a problem, some of the techniques can be applied with you sitting in a chair, or on a special massage chair. I’m happy to discuss these and any other concerns which you might have about massage, particularly if you’ve not tried it before, so feel free to get in touch.