Seeing a massage therapist can be a relaxing and pleasant way to
alleviate pain. A good massage can undo the effects of a long journey,
a fall, or a sports injury. Chronic pain can also be addressed and
alleviated by massage therapy. Keep in mind, however, that the longer
you have had the pain, the longer it can take to address it. For
example, neck pain from a car accident 20 years ago, might not be
eradicated after one 60 minute massage.
When beginning a series of treatments to address chronic pain, you
play a large part in your recovery. The massage therapist can only do
so much if you are unwilling to take care of your body in-between
I often give my clients some stretching and postural recommendations.
These suggestions are part of the treatment. Our bodies hold on to
patterns and a muscle released on my table will likely return to it’s
tight, dysfunctional state if the client does nothing to maintain the
work done in the treatment room.
The clients that see the best results from bodywork are those who take
responsibility in their own health care. There is only so much I can
do in one hour if you are undoing my work the minute you walk out of
Here are a few things you can do to maintain the positive effects of
your massage after the treatment:
1) Drink plenty of water. Massage releases toxins stored in your
tissues into your bloodstream which can cause nausea, dizziness or
headache. Drinking water can flush them out.
2) Stretch. If you have had a specific tight area worked on, continue
to stretch it after the massage. If you are unsure how to do this, ask
3) Take it easy. It can take some time for your body to integrate the
changes suggested by a massage. Move your body, stretch, go to a
gentle or yin yoga class after your treatment, but don’t go for a
vigorous workout or stress your body after your massage. Remember that
recovery is an important part of a regular workout routine.
4) Thank yourself for taking some time to take care of your body. You
only have one body and no one else can take care of it for you.