So I have complied a list of the top 5 questions to ask for the best massage of your life
How long have you been massaging?
Now, I want to be clear. This is not always an indicator of a person who knows what they are doing (I know several amazing therapists who have less than a year experience), but it is a GREAT way to begin the conversation about your therapist’s credentials.
As this article shows, most Massage Therapists don’t make it past the 5 year mark in their career. A lot of people go to school for massage thinking it is an easy job and that GIVING massage is like RECEIVING massage. It is not.
And so, When you hear that a therapist has been massaging for 5 years or more, they generally know what they are doing. You are beginning to find out if they are indeed going to be the purveyor of the best massage of your life.
Where did you go to school?
Look, I am not over here thinking you know which massage schools are the Ivy League of massage schools (they actually exists BTW, looking at you The Swed). But what you should look for is HOW the therapist talks about their school.
Are they like “OMG they were amazing, I learned so much!” Do they just answer your question and move on… or the worst “Oh I took this little 6 week course from some online school”
–If someone says the latter to you in a professional studio, RUN away!
What you’re really looking for is what do they say about their schooling. Just like someone who graduated from Columbia says it with pride, your massage therapist should love the learning they do. Which brings me to my next question…
What was your last CEU course?
CEU stands for “Continuing Education Unit”. Massage therapists are required to take classes to keep their licensure. If they “can’t remember” or say they haven’t taken one in a while – thats not a therapist who is passionate about their practice as a healer. DO NOT go to this person!
You will definitely not get the massage of a lifetime. You will almost certainly NOT get the best massage of your life from someone who isn’t learning. It means they are going through the paces, giving you some routine they learned in school. BLECH. No thank you.
I expect my massage therapists on staff to continually learn. This is the most important thing to growing as a healer.
Can you tell me more about the pain in my [insert area that is bothering you – for this example I will use your shoulders] shoulders ?
You want a therapist that is going to rise to the occasion! They are going to be like “omg you want to geek about muscles?! LETS DO THIS.”
If you want the best massage EVER, you really want a therapist who LOVES what they do and knows all about it. If they are like “uuuhhhhhhmmmm … its pretty tight and I can try to massage it” then that’s def not “BEST OF” material.
Think of pretty much any profession. The people who love it are just going to give you a better, more thorough service. From software engineers to your food server. Massage in no different.
What does wellness mean to you?
So this one might be weird to ask, but DO IT. You’ll learn A LOT. When you are engaging a wellness professional who has made this their career, you really want someone who has thought about this question in depth.
You want their eyes to light up and you want them to get almost wistful. You want them to wax poetic. You want them to WANT to tell you all about wellness.
If your massage therapist can’t answer this, it doesn’t mean you CAN’T get the best massage of your life from them… it just means the likelihood is going way way down, and it’s probably NOT the best massage of your life. You just don’t know it yet.
You want to hear your therapist saying things like “a balance between your inner spirit and physical body” or “a continuing journey to your truest self” or “health and healing from the inside out” (these are real answers from my massage therapists when I ask them this question)
As an owner of a highly regarded wellness studio, I ask these questions (among a TON of other questions… I really make my therapists jump through hoops to get hired) of each therapist I interview.
I listen not just to what they are saying, but how excited and interested they are. I listen for the knowledge they have gained and what they are interested in gaining as they grow. If I am doing that, you should too! Its your body, and it deserves exceptional treatment.
Give my top 5 questions to ask for the best massage of your life a try. You’ll be surprised at what you can learn about your therapist, and finally get the massage you’ve actually been wanting for those sore and tired muscles.