This is one of the most frequently asked questions(FAQ) new clients ask. And I tell everybody something different. Why is that? Because it's YOUR body, not mine.
I can recommend that what I THINK may be beneficial all day long, but I don't live your life, know your stresses, pains, or struggles.
In my experience, one of the most significant benefits of massage and bodywork is AWARENESS. You know that saying, 'Ignorance is bliss'?? An example would be when a client comes in complaining of back pain. We will usually start working with the hamstrings, hips, or even the feet, and the client will say,
"WOW, I didn't know that was sore until you started working on it!"
Many of us lack physical awareness of our bodies, and we forget that it's all attached! We take for granted that our bodies are just going to keep going like the energizer bunny, no matter what kind of stress or abuse we subject it to. But eventually, the body reaches a point where it's not going to adapt, and things start breaking down. One little issue crops up and then starts to affect everything around it.
This is why we suggest regular maintenance sessions for most clients that can range weekly to every six weeks, depending on their lifestyle, budget, and goals.
There are many factors I suggest clients consider when trying to figure out the best frequency for their sessions. What are you looking to accomplish? Are you only looking for relaxation or to reduce stress, treat chronic pain, or increase athletic performance?
Chronic stress can be a killer and may contribute to many health issues. There are lots of different ways to reduce stress. Exercise, meditation, yoga, a hobby, and especially massage therapy are excellent ways to relieve stress. Relaxation and stress relief often go hand in hand.
A monthly massage can go a long way in providing relief from the stresses of life.
Some clients even schedule their massages 5-6 weeks apart. The key is consistency and sticking with it. Many clients find that scheduling their massage the same day and time EVERY TIME makes it easier to develop a habit, and it becomes a routine, part of their schedule and life. It doesn't have to be a 60-minute massage or even a 90-minute massage. If a 30-minute massage is all you can afford, then concentrate on an area that bothers you the most, and you'll still notice a positive effect on your entire body over time.
For someone dealing with chronic pain, sessions may need to be scheduled more frequently, depending on the issue. An example would be someone suffering from Whiplash or an acute condition. With Whiplash(or acceleration-deceleration injury), I usually recommend 2-3 treatments per week with trigger point therapy. These sessions may only last 30 minutes. This type of massage treatment may look different from a regular massage. The goal of this session is pain relief, which may require the active participation of the client, and is concentrated in a particular area. As the client's condition improves, the frequency may be reduced.
Increasing Athletic Performance
Whether you are a weekend warrior or a serious athlete, massage not only reduces pain, but it contributes to muscular healing. One massage study found that massage speeds up muscle healing by activating the molecules that reduce inflammation and promotes mitochondrial growth. Therefore, promoting a speedy recovery so you can get more out of your training and decrease the likelihood of muscle injury. That's a huge benefit for the serious athlete!
These are just a few ideas to think about when determining how frequently you need to schedule your massages. You can always ask your massage therapist, but they won't know how long your bodywork results last. Being aware of your body and paying attention to it will help you figure out that frequency.
But don't wait until the last minute until you are in pain, as your favorite massage therapist may not be available for same-day appointments!
Being proactive is more beneficial, and your body will auto adjust to a schedule once you establish one. So schedule your massage in advance online or better yet, establish monthly or weekly appointments with your favorite therapist, and your body will love you for it! Thanks for reading our wellness blog, and be sure to follow Bull City Soles on Instagram or Facebook for last-minute availabilities, more self-care tips, or upcoming events.