Life is constantly changing, and massage is no exception to that rule. A little bit of adaptability can go a long way in helping us humans to cope with the many changes in our lives.
It happens all the time that at the start of a session, a client may say, “It’s just my shoulder, that’s the only thing that’s bothering me,” and while this IS true at the start of the session, it may actually change as the session progresses.
What humans and other creatures experience as pain sensation is physically a nerve signal that travels from the area of pain to the brain. Because of something called Gate Control Theory, only the loudest pain signals will get through at any given time. Also, activation of nerves which do not transmit pain signals, such as those for touch, pressure, and vibration can interfere with signals from pain fibers, thereby inhibiting pain.
This of course, is where the massage comes in. As Massage Therapists, we are taking control of the gate, inhibiting the pain signals from reaching your brain and instead letting in the friendly signals, the ones that don’t want to hurt you. What also happens is that sometimes clients will start to feel pain elsewhere in the body, someplace that they have been ignoring. The signal wasn’t loud enough before, and it couldn’t get through the gate.
So while at the start of the massage it was all about the shoulder, after spending some time on the table you may find that there are other areas that also need to be addressed. Maybe you started out wanting just a relaxation massage, and then changed your mind mid-way through. Or maybe the opposite is true. You thought you booked your appointment for some real deep body work, but then life happened and day of you really just need to zen out. And that’s OK! We are happy to be flexible with you and help you help your body figure out what it needs.
And that might change! Because where you start may not be where you’ll end up.