Lots of people don’t get massages because they have questions they are too embarrassed to ask. You can become a better massage therapist by understanding what these questions are and how to answer them. Remember to reassure your clients that no questions are dumb, and that they shouldn’t feel embarrassed about expressing their concerns.
Take a look at the following common massage questions and how to answer them.
Questions About Modesty and the Body
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Do I have to take off all my clothes?
Most massage therapists want their clients as exposed as possible because clothes can get in the way of the massage. However, clients don’t have to remove anything that they don’t want to. Reassure the client that you want them to be as comfortable as possible.
I feel self conscious about certain parts of my body. What should I do?
If a client has acne, scars, excessive hair growth, or anything else that makes them self conscious about their body, they need to feel that they can communicate this with their massage therapist. Then you can advise them to do whatever they want to make themselves feel comfortable. Massage therapists have seen it all, but clients can still be modest.
What if the massage gives me an erection?
Erections are completely normal, and they happen even when there is no sexual context. So, erections really aren’t anything to be embarrassed about. Massage therapists probably won’t even notice because that portion of the client’s body is typically always covered. Give them assurance that this is a natural reaction and they shouldn’t be worried about you taking it the wrong way.
What if I drool during the massage?
Drooling during massages is more common than people think. This is because massages cause people to fall into a peaceful, near-slumber state where even the mouth muscles relax — sometimes causing drool. Let the client know that it’s not a big deal and you should have some tissues on hand if the client needs them.
Questions About Massage Logistics
I feel more comfortable with a female massage therapist. Can I request this?
Let the client know that it is okay to request this, but encourage them to have an open mind. There is nothing sexual about a massage when given by a therapist, so gender really shouldn’t matter. Both men and women can have the same skills, so a client’s experience can be great with any skilled massage therapist.
Should I talk to the massage therapist during the massage?
Let your client know that this is completely up to them. Massage therapists typically do not talk during the massage, but they do engage in conversation when prompted. So, if the client feels like talking, there really is nothing wrong with that. They actually want to be communicating with their massage therapist about what they like and what they don’t.
Do I need to leave a tip? How much?
It depends on the situation, but usually a 15-20% tip is expected. Massage therapists are used to this question, so let them know that they don’t have to worry about asking about tips.
How do I approach my massage therapist when I’m not satisfied with my massage?
Encourage your clients to be open with you when they want something different done during their massage. They try to listen to their cues, but having the client state them is always the best way to go. Let them know that they aren’t going to offend you. Good massage therapists know that everyone has different preferences.
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You can always encourage clients to express themselves, but they still might not ask some of these embarrassing questions. The best thing you can do is be tuned in to the things they say and try to pick up on things they may be wondering about, especially first-time massage clients.