Angie's List: Mother's Day Massage

By Lauren Maloney

Published 05/02 2014 08:45PM

Updated 05/05 2014 06:25AM

A massage can be a great way to help relieve pain and stress.
And it could be the perfect gift for Mom this Mother’s Day.
In today’s Angie’s List report, what you need to know about massage therapy.

In her free time, Danielle Frey hits hard as a roller derby girl on the flat track, but she offers a soft touch in her job as a massage therapist.

“If someone wants to come in and relax I’m going to use mostly Swedish techniques. If someone is coming in for pain relief I’m going to add in some trigger points, deep tissue work, and maybe some myofascial release,” Massage Therapist Danielle Frey said.

For nearly six years, Danielle Bell says massage therapy helped relieve her back pain.

“I have a lot of muscle pain, especially in my upper back. I find that the medications my doctors prescribed don’t really address that so I come and get massages from Danielle to address those problems and I find that the massage actually does address the problem rather than covering it up like medication does,” Danielle Bell said.

Swedish and deep tissue is the most common massages, but there are many techniques available today.

“I’ve gotten massage for many years just because I have a lot of tension,” Amy Wallarab said.

Amy Wallarab enjoys a massage called Thai yoga which involves stretching and compression work.
Frey says it has many benefits.

“Increased flexibility is a big one. It really works deep into the muscles to help relax the muscles. You feel relaxed but also rejuvenated and energized afterwards,” Frey said.

Angie’s List says if you are not familiar with massage therapy; ask questions to be sure you are comfortable with the service.

“A massage can be a great way to pamper your mom this Mother’s Day, but be sure it’s going to be something she is going to want to do and is comfortable with. The last thing your mom is going to tell you is you wasted money. She probably won’t be comfortable and she’ll just throw the certificate in the drawer and never talk about it,” Founder Angie Hicks said.

Massage might not be ideal for anyone, especially those with health problems.
If you are considering a gift of massage for Mom - make sure she checks first with her doctor.
And while most states require massage therapist to be licensed, Angie’s List says there are a handful of states that do not.
Ask what level of education or testing they have acquired.

Angie’s List Tips: Hiring a massage therapist

·         Check with your doctor: Massage might not be ideal for anyone with circulatory issues, diabetes, lymphatic cancer, skin conditions and a variety of other health problems. Massage can worsen these conditions, especially if not handled by a trained professional, so get medical clearance first.

·         Are you licensed? Most states require therapists to be licensed with certifications for different types of massages. Many therapists will train in specific types of massages. Check out the spa or private practice you intend to use before you have your massage and make sure it is clean and safe.

·         Test the waters: If you are not familiar with massage therapy, an inexpensive chair massage may be a good way to introduce yourself to the service. Consult with the therapist beforehand to discuss which type of massage best suits your needs.

·         What are you comfortable with? Every massage therapist is different. You want to find one you feel comfortable with and enjoy being with. Some therapists work for doctors, some have a room at a beauty spa and many therapists make house calls. Make sure that your therapist questions you thoroughly about your health history, any pain and any other health concerns you may have. The therapist should also ask questions about your mental and emotional state, as stress can lead to pain. The general length of a massage session is anywhere from 45 to 90 minutes.

·         How much to expect? The cost for a massage can vary, depending on the length and type, but an average starting point is $1 per minute.

·         Who do you prefer? Know whether you prefer working with a male or a female. Many male massage therapists work on women and vice versa. You may wish to talk to friends and family who receive regular massages, but the decision ultimately comes from your comfort level.

·         Speak up: If during the massage, you find it hurts or is not meeting your needs, speak up. Voicing any pain or displeasure is vital to a successful massage.


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