Three reasons to see a newer massage therapist

I got one of the best massages of my life last week. From a massage therapist who only got out of school a month ago. He was friendly, communicative (but not chatty) and very, very skilled. I got deep pressure exactly where I asked for it, he really listened to my (minimal) feedback and adjusted his techniques accordingly.

This got me thinking, I’m a pretty picky massage consumer, and I often ask about a therapists experience before I book with them. I’ve been off base. There are plenty of reasons to see a newer therapists and I’m going to make an effort to get more massages from some of them.

Scheduling
It’s a heck of a lot easier to get an appointment with a new therapist than an old timer. They’re still working to fill up their schedules and cultivate a clientele. If you want to get in every second Tuesday at 7pm, or weekly on a Saturday morning, you’ll find newer therapists can accommodate your scheduling quirks with much more flexibility.

Excitement
What’s more exciting than starting a new career?! Most massage therapists come to massage after some years in other professions. Massage and bodywork isn’t just a job, it’s a calling. That translates into great client care and fantastic bodywork.

Loyalty
Most clients are loyal to their service providers. We appreciate the quality of a good haircut, delivered by someone who knows about the Perm Incident of 1998. We like seeing the same therapist over and over again, because ether know our bodies, and exactly where and when they hurt. But loyalty goes both ways. When you’ve been with a therapist since the beginning of their career, you get some perks. Perhaps it’s the appointment time you prefer, or a great discount on gift certificates around the holidays, or even being grandfathered in with old fees when prices go up.

Therapists really appreciate regular and long-term clients. New therapists love when clients are cool being guinea pigs after a contenting education class, and we remember exactly who helped us start our businesses.

So the next time you hear of a newer therapist just starting out, give them a shot! It could be the beginning of a beautiful massage friendship.

Photo courtesy of RyanHoyme.com
  • koshtra

    Yes, I agree completely. New people often bring a special enthusiasm and joy to their work

  • Leslie Maze Forrester

    As a therapist with just three years under my belt, I concur with this. Completely. What wasn’t exactly spelled out is that SOME older therapists (by NO MEANS ALL) get complacent on their continuing education and may not be up on the latest in pathology, contraindications, etc or have been away so long from their education that they are foggy on details. I’ve attended continuing education classes where the instructor (yes, the instructor) had forgotten the muscle names. Not little obscure muscles. Things like levator scapula.

  • Andrea Lipomi

    Hooray for a great massage experience, and for the great skills (massage AND communication) demonstrated by your MT. Here’s to keeping these items at the tops of our priority lists throughout our careers. :)

  • Jason Peringer

    As someone that sat waiting in a new location for a client to work with me for several weeks, being shunned based solely on my gender, I whole-heartedly agree…

  • I agree with Leslie. Complacency can be a HUGE problem with older therapists. I keep this high on my “don’t be this way” list since I’ve been a therapist for 14 years. It’s easy to get into a rut. Also, there is a lot of new research out there. If you don’t keep up, an older therapist could be promoting ideas that are no longer true or relevant.

  • Megan Spence

    Yes! New therapists can be so great! Another thing I remember from when I was brand spanking new was specificity. Anytime I lacked flow, I remembered the anatomy that was so fresh in my mind and got in there and stripped every muscle in the area with precision, even in relaxation massage. I still do specific work and brush up on my anatomy, but there was a real zeal for the details that I think is very common in new therapists. It goes hand in hand with the point about excitement in this post.