Occasionally a client will say something like “Give me your worst. I’m strong and can take it.” or “You can really beat me up, I don’t mind.”
I know everyone has different tastes, and some people actually enjoy the feeling of having a deep knot really worked out, but the frequency I hear it brings up a really good question: “Does massage therapy for pain relief have to hurt to be effective?”
Well the answer as far as I’m concerned is: No, not at all. The “No pain, no gain!” saying does not apply to massage therapy. In fact massage is most effective when the appropriate pressure is applied. You can get amazing results and relief from pain with even the most gentle treatments. Also, most people have misconceptions about deep tissue massage. A lot of people seem to think the deeper the better, but the practice is not about how deep. It’s about how we gently and gradually work through the multiple layers of muscle to free your connective tissues and relieve your pain.
While massage can be uncomfortable and sometimes even painful when you are treating recent or chronic injuries, the pain should not be the result of the therapist beating you up. The discomfort is something to be worked with, gently and within your limits.
[alert type=”error” animation_type=”bounce” animation_direction=”left” animation_speed=”1″]If you experience pain during any massage therapy session, please tell your therapist. Your muscles release tension when you are relaxed, not when you’re tensed up in pain.[/alert]
When it comes to massage therapy, tuning in to your own body and sensing its response to each particular technique is a much better indicator of effectiveness than the how much pain you can take during a session.