So Many Massage Therapists, How Do I Pick the Right one for Me?

 In Massage

Hey everyone, here is a great topic.  How does someone pick the best massage therapist for their needs? Where should one even start to find a therapist?

With technology today the internet is one of the most useful resources for one to find a business or therapist with a credible bio to check out.  Most people today have internet access as well as an online presence for their business practice.  It is pretty essential these days to have a website to describe the work they offer. Jump online in your own town, or where ever you plan to go on vacation and look for a local business if you are seeking specialty work.  If you are looking for a general relaxation massage, you can find a massage chain with more flexibility for time frames to get in for a session.

There are so many differing types of massage available for one to choose from.  So how does one  know what to ask for, or what to look for with a therapist?  A few questions can help determine what the client needs and with what practitioner. What does a treatment session offer differently than that of a typical Swedish massage? What are the focus points the client is hoping to achieve for the session? Are there any chronic pain (pain persisting for an extended period of time) issues?  What are the focus goals for the session?  Are there any injuries to be made aware of? Do you just want to relax and distress with no general body complaint?  Is money or time a focal point to be concerned with?

To find a massage therapist with a good fit for you, take a few quick moments to reflect what the body is in need of on the day of the treatment will certainly help. Booking out regularly (and I highly recommend) can also help to keep the body in check with all the daily stressors placed upon it from daily work habits, exercise, fun activities and so on.

For me, the challenge is finding a good therapist with a variety of skill sets who can focus with treatment work, or relaxation, or maybe some sports massage, or MET (Muscle Energy Techniques) or injury recovery (when I exercise too much and cause my body to hold more tension).  Medical massage, trauma recovery, or deep tissue are also varying techniques which are very helpful to add into a massage session.  I want to find a therapist who has all of these varying forms of work so I don’t need to constantly go around town to different practitioners seeking relief from what my body is ailing from.

Different therapists have different education, focusing on a variety of work in different areas they are (hopefully) interested in. It makes a great deal of difference in what the goals are with the therapist.  Be sure to check out what the continuing education is they have to offer.  Most practitioners are happy to offer their education success stories and their latest new skill set.  If the information regarding the therapist is online, check out their info, and if it is not, then Communicate on the phone or by email when initiating the first conversation to decide if it is a good fit to work with one another.

Another challenge to picking a good massage therapist is that of scheduling.  Are the therapists willing to book out, have reoccurring sessions, or availability when you need them?  How far do they book out?  Why is it a good thing to book out a few sessions?   A therapist willing to book out a few sessions for clients helps ensure the availability for both the client and the therapist to continue working with one another.  One thing I hate is finding a good therapist and then having scheduling conflicts to limit my ability to work specifically with that practitioner for future sessions.  A therapist willing to book out often suggests the busy schedule offering suggestion they are busy and in demand.

Sometimes Therapists can vary greatly in price, why?
Levels of education, time and energy spent on additional schooling will play a great role with cost.  Checking to see how long the Therapist has been in practice will often give some hint to some education level.  Massage therapists are required to participate in mandatory continuing education for state requirements to maintain a license.  National licensing also has a set of criteria for education.  The longer a therapist has had their license, most likely the more education they have under their belt. One of the best things to do when seeking a therapist out is to look at their bio online, and if they don’t have one, be sure to ask when chatting on the phone to make sure its a good fit for you to work with them.
My general experience, is that the therapist who has a greater time in practice, will have more education and will charge more than a newer practitioner.  Experience is key.  This is not to suggest newer therapists are not awesome, it is only to mention cost may vary.  Communication is crucial.  If a budget is concern, ask the therapist if they offer any sort of package incentive.  Sometimes Paying upfront for an agreed upon number of sessions can potentially offer a discount on sessions.

What ever the decision making process you choose to utilize when finding the right therapist for you, I hope you take a minute to reflect some of these ideas to find your perfect fit.  I personally book out my regular clients in 3 -6 month increments.  I have regular work hours 5/6 days per week.  I have a full client load so to be sure I am able to accommodate my clientele, I book them out and then I have small open spaces to fit in newer clients or those sporadically in need of an emergency session. I love educating my clients with self care, health and wellness strategies for long term goals of their journey of health.  My clients take stock into their health and add their own authority when they commit to their journey with regular sessions.  I offer massage sessions focusing on healing the body with a plethora of techniques in each session, not knowing what each client will need in any given session.  My cost is the same for a deep tissue session or a medical massage session.  Some places charge a different price for a relaxation session verses deep tissue.  I don’t fluctuate price per session like some places because I want to offer the best of my abilities to each client as they walk in the door.  If someone is hurting, I want to help alleviate that pain.  If someone comes in with no notable issue, and I find something to address, I intend to address it and help them feel better.

I wish you the best on your journey to find the right therapist for your body, for your health and wellness.  I encourage you to look for a local business to support the community you live in.  Creating sustainability is key to make a community thrive.

Until next week friends, may you all be healthy and well.

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