What to expect : What happens in a massage session

Maybe you have never had a massage and maybe you did but you didn’t enjoy your experience. Now you want to try massage for the first time or give it another try and you have questions. Answering some of these questions now will put your mind at ease so you can focus on enjoying the benefits of massage.


After reviewing paperwork, I customize sessions with the client’s input through conversation before each session begins. Just as each person is unique, every person has unique goals and a number of topics are discussed to reach these goals:

  • Areas the client wants worked on. A few examples include a full body relaxation to address general stress or upper body only to address a shoulder injury.

  • What we have time to work on during the scheduled time.

  • Any areas the client doesn’t want worked on. For example, it is ok to say you do not like having your feet or scalp touched.

  • Any contraindications based on medication or conditions. An example is needing to use light pressure because of medication that thins your blood or blocks your sensation of pressure.

  • Review ways to make the client comfortable such as table warmth, music, or extra pillows.

After talking about these points I will suggest an order of the areas I will work on. You are welcome to request changes to the routine and ask any questions that come up. Once the routine is agreed upon I will leave to wash my hands while you get settled onto the table. I will always knock and listen for you to answer if you are ready before I enter the room.


During the session I ask you to focus on where I am working. Does it feel sore, bumpy, or is this your new favorite part of massage? I can feel a lot but not the same as you can. If a spot I am working on is painful or tender to the point you are not able to breathe easily, you should ask me to back off the pressure since it is important to breathe comfortably through a session. There is no need for Minnesota Nice during this time, just let me know how to make you more comfortable. If you get too hot or too cold, I can adjust that. If you need a pillow or change position, I can make it happen. You are welcome to talk during the massage if it helps you relax but I will not initiate conversation other than checking in about pressure. It is also ok if you prefer not to talk at all during the massage.


After the session I would love to hear any feedback such as what you liked, didn’t like, and ideas of what we can do differently next time. I will offer suggestions of things you can do as self care at home and offer any resources or referrals you might be interested in before you leave. Finally I will remind you to drink more water after your session and throughout the rest of the day.


What should you expect in a massage session? My intention at Rita Sandquist Massage Therapy is that you feel in control, informed, empowered and able to relax and let go of tension and pain. Call 612-412-4814 for a free consultation today!


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