Do Massage Therapists Get Massages?
Massage therapists always want to tell you about why YOU should get a massage, but what about us? Are we getting massages? Why would we even go if we’re trained Massage Therapists? I can share that yes, we do get massage (as frequently as we can) and I personally get in about once a month despite all the self massage I do.
Massage is Preventative
As a massage therapist, I’m technically a “skilled laborer”. This means the majority of my workday I’m engaged in manual labor as the primary function of my job. Massage also tends to force you to keep your arms working in front of the body and to look down a lot of the day. This encourages the classic “Upper Cross Syndrome” where the shoulders round forward and the head shifts forward. Combine this tendency to round forward with the strength required to perform massage and you can end up with tight, painful shoulder and back muscles.
When you combine this with the general stress of work and life you can wind up with the same problems facing much of the population. I like to stay active in my time off; fixing up my flowerbeds, working in the garden, or going hiking. So I need a more active recovery than simple rest.
Massage Effects the Whole Body
I do a lot of self-care using tools like the Trigger Point Pro, massage cups, and my percussion massager. Seriously, I’m massaging myself pretty much on a daily basis. However, there are some parts of the body that I simply can’t reach, and it’s usually more effective to have someone else do the work so I can relax. Relaxation is therapy. Relaxation allows the nervous system to “take a breath” and quit panicking for a moment. (Read here for info on stress’ link to chronic pain)
Full body massage and the changes it brings also support a healthy heart, brain, and immune system. So getting a monthly massage is an easy way to stay on top of my general health. Because I can work most of the knots out myself, I get to schedule Swedish style massages that are more flowing and relaxing. This increases it’s effectiveness this for these body systems. Even the Mayo Clinic has great things to say about massage
So yes, I do get massages and take my own medicine. I attribute my 11+ year career as a massage therapist to getting regular massages. Many therapists don’t make it past 7 years in the field and I want to do this for many more years to come.