After Your Massage

When the massage is over
You’ve just received a great massage. In fact, it was so good you have to take a minute to collect yourself when the therapist leaves the room. Massage practitioners refer to this time as the “coming back” period or a moment to regain your “connectedness” and most recommend savoring this valuable experience. These few minutes can be an exquisite interlude during which your cares and concerns seem a million miles away- relish it.

After a massage always take time to let your head clear, drink some water and put your feet on the ground, literally, before leaving your practitioners’ place of business. Using caution when getting off the table is sage advice; not only might your balance be skewed a bit, your feet, if covered with massage oil, might be slippery. Also take your time getting dressed. Allow an extra second or two to make sure you have not forgotten anything.

What to do once you leave the premises
Most practitioners will advise you to avoid strenuous activities for at least the next few hours. Some forms of bodywork are very much like a workout and many result in similar type soreness the day after. People should use common sense and do what feels natural or best for them.

If you are getting a “Hot Stone Massage” and are in another ‘zone’ afterward, in that instance it is better for you to take some time and appreciate that space. But someone else might be able to go on and do what they want- whether that means going back to work, back to finances or a trip to the gym. Massage can be an integral part of your life at all times, suggesting that you don’t have to shut down for the remainder of the day. It all depends on the therapist, the type of message you’re receiving and what your motivations were for getting the massage. If you want to relax and go into the ‘zone’ you will not want to go to the gym afterward.”

-Originally published in Body Sense Magazine, Spring  2003, by Darren Buford

Things to do at home
Drinking extra water, after your massage, aids in flushing out waste products from muscles and other tissue and improves circulation. Drinking water also aids in reducing soreness and fatigue after a massage.

If your massage was focused on a particular injury or body part, remember to stretch, ice, or apply heat to that area with the advice of your massage therapist. Some people may experience soreness for up to 24 hours after a massage. If you feel sore take a hot shower or a warm bath with Epsom salts.

Always remember to let your therapist know of any adverse experience, so that it can be taken into consideration and tailored into your next session.