Confessions of a Master Massage Therapist


We do not always do as we teach. Sometimes we take shortcuts. There it is, it’s off my chest, and I feel so much better now. For example, as much as I love nurturing my clients, sometimes my day is overbooked, and I become hyper-focused on the client’s immediate treatment goals. Times like this nurturing falls way down on the priority list. My dilemma is that I feel all sessions should have soothing components, so what’s a girl to do?


I rely on shortcuts that continue to passively nurture even when I am distracted. Most of you know how much I am devoted to aromatherapy as a treatment modality. I love to custom blend my massage medium for clients (assembly required). When I do not have the time for that, I will use blends and synergies (some assembly required). There is also an assortment of massage mediums that I blend ahead of time (pre-assembly). Finally, there are even a few products that come ready to use (no assembly required). I mention these all the time, but just in case you don’t remember, they are Polar Lotion (enhanced with a few drops of Orange EO), Muscle and Joint Relief Massage Cream, and the Relaxing Therapeutic Massage Cream.


I’m happy to report that I have added another (no assembly) treatment tool. I just got the complete assortment of Biotone’s new Aromatherapy Massage Lotions. I simply set them out in the reception room so that clients can explore their different scents. I let them pick one out for their massage, and I make sure to incorporate it in their session. The real bonus is that this ensures that even before we start talking, (subjective; objective; treatment plans; and desired outcomes etc. ) I have introduced an element of pleasure and joy.


Why do I bother? Because I don’t want my clients to equate spending time with me like going to the dentist's office. You know what I mean…. a necessary component to wellness that is not all that pleasant, and even if you know that you will feel better afterwards, you still dread it a little. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in the value of a good relaxing massage and try to deliver that experience as often as possible. But the fact of life for a Form and Function therapist is that you are always straddling the line of helping people in pain/dysfunction and providing an oasis of calm to retreat and recharge. I love the challenge, but it requires that I stay on my toes and recruit as many effective treatment allies as I can.


Last month I encouraged you to evaluate your practice, and this should be an area you include. What modalities do you use? I will be at the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) National Convention in September. I promise you a good percentage of the time (when not in class or in the Delegate sessions), I will be stalking the aisles of the trade show, looking for all the modality allies I can find. You will probably run into me at the Biotone booth a lot since they have the best toys to play with, samples, and I always learn something new hanging out with their staff.


Be well, Do good work, and make sure to say Hi in Denver at the AMTA convention.


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