Your First Massage ...
what to expect and questions to ask!

You might feel more comfortable knowing what will happen at your first massage, if it is a new experience for you.

Whether you are searching for stress relief or some of the other healthy benefits of massage, relaxation during your massage is a must.

Start preparing for true relaxation before the appointment, by getting to know your therapist.

Questions to ask a Potential Therapist
  • Are you certified in_______ massage? (whatever type of massage you want)
  • How many hours of education/training have you had?
  • How long have you been a massage therapist?
  • What is your license/certification/registration number? (You can find them on a state register to verify)
  • What type of massage therapist jobs have you had in the past?
  • Where is your office?
  • Tell me about undressing - If this is uncomfortable for you, talking about it over the phone might be much less awkward!
  • What do you charge?
  • Can I have the name and number of someone who has used your services? They will probably not provide personal client information, but if a client has given a testimonial on their website or business brochure, they can easily share this.

This is also the time for you to discuss any physical limitations you may have with the therapist. Sharing medical information not only prepares you for the session, but it prepares the therapist to provide the best treatment for your needs.

This is what happens at your first massage after you walk in the front door:

1. The therapist will greet you and show you to the room where the session will take place.

2. He/She will discuss if you are needing stress relief massage or specific areas (such as low back) work or what type of massage you are interested in receiving. You can learn more about massage techniques under "Types of Massage".

3. You will probably be asked to fill out a form which will ask you to list your medical history, any medicine you take, why you are seeking massage therapy and some contact information.

4.He/She should discuss your specific problem areas and how massage can help, as well as the amount of pressure that should be used in the treatment.

5. You will be instructed about how to undress, where to put your clothing and how to get onto the massage table. If you prefer to leave on undergarments, this is the time to share this with the therapist.

What will the massage room be like?

Almost immediately after you step in to a massage room, your body begins preparing to "unwind".

After discussing the session with your therapist, he or she will leave the room. You will lie on a massage table with fresh, clean sheets, and get drawn in to peaceful massage music.

You will deeply breathe in relaxing aromas like lavender or eucalyptus.

You will quickly realize you are in a safe environment, and the healing begins...even before the massage therapist enters the room!

Common Questions About a First Massage

Do I undress completely?

Most massage therapists tell their clients to "undress to your comfort level". However, massage is usually given with the client completely undressed or with underpants only.

Do I undress with the therapist in the room?

No. The therapist should leave the room while you undress.

Most often, he or she will tell you where you put your clothes, how to get onto the massage table, how you should be under the sheet and/or blanket, how you will be draped at all times, and then he/she will give you a few minutes to undress before returning to start the massage.

There should never be any form of inappropriate behavior in a massage session, on the part of the client or the therapist.

Will the therapist use oil or lotion?

Some use oil, some use lotion or cream-it is really the therapists' choice. If you are receiving hot stone massage, it will usually be oil or gel (which is like an oil/lotion mixture).

Will the massage hurt?

If you are receiving a relaxation massage, it should not hurt. However, everyone is different. Verbalize anything that makes you feel uncomfortable.

Will I have forms to fill out?

Yes, usually there is a brief intake form to fill out. It will give your massage therapist information that will help him/her in your massage treatment.

Basically, it is questions about your medical history, medications, and if you have had massage before. Most often, there is a section which states that you understand the purpose of your massage treatment.

Remember to tell the therapist if anything hurts or is uncomfortable. Make sure you point out major health conditions like high blood pressure or serious skin conditions that you may have.

It should never be a stressful experience.

For more information about how massage therapy can positively impact your life, this book, The Healing Power Of Massage Therapy: Enjoy The Healing Benefits Of Massage Treatment As Medicine, As Relaxation, And As Physical Rehabilitation will offer greater details about your first massage and the benefits it provides your health.

Go to your first massage session with the anticipation of true relaxation and stress relief!


Go back to Massage Education Guide Homepage

Go back to Find a Massage Therapist from Your First Massage


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