Top 5 Questions to ask for the best massage of your life
As a massage therapist who has worked in the industry for over 20 years, I have SEEN IT ALL.
From quack doctors, to unlicensed therapists doing all sorts of crazy things, to client’s coming in, with serious pain and just not getting a great massage, the wellness field can be tricky to navigate. One of the best ways to know if the place your booking your next massage is to ASK QUESTIONS!
So I have complied a list of the top 5 questions to ask for the best massage of your life.
1 . 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. 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 its 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.
2 . 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). 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 this 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, so too should your massage therapist.
3. What was your last CEU course?
CEU stands for continuing education unit. We are required to take classes to keep our 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.
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.
4. 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 thats 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 waiter. Massage in no different.
5. 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 living, 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 wistful almost. You want them to wax poetic. You want them to WANT to tell you about wellness.
If your massage therapist can’t answer this it doesn’t mean you CANT get the best massage of your life from them… it just means the likelihood is going way way down, and its 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” “a continuing journey to your truest self” “health and healing from the inside out”
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 to 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.