Why do I have to fill out an intake form?
The intake form includes information such as contact information, medical history and informed consent/release of liability. Contact information is important for follow-ups as well as to inform you of special offers and maybe even send you a gift card on your birthday! Of course, you always have the right to request that we not contact you, but I still need your contact information on file. Medical history is very important in massage therapy because of the direct affect it has on the soft tissues and on body functions. Some medical conditions are contraindicated for massage, meaning that if you receive certain types of massage with certain medical conditions, you may be putting yourself in harm's way! Informed consent & release of liability basically is you signing your name saying that you are an adult, you have requested therapeutic massage treatment, you know what it entails, you know what it does not entail, you know that you and your therapist reserve the right to end the session at any time in case of inappropriate behavior, and that you are ultimately responsible for yourself in the universe.
Depending on the setting in which you receive your massage, the type of bodywork you are receiving, and what we have discussed, your massage may be anywhere from 5 to 120 minutes long. Most massages are 60 or 90 minutes long. 30 minute massage and 2 hour massage are also available. Most Chair Massage sessions (at a corporate office or special event) will usually last 5-15 minutes, and are usually scheduled back to back in set intervals or on a first come, first served basis.
What should I wear?
First and foremost, you should only undress to your comfort level. Some techniques may need to be modified to accommodate whatever clothing you choose to leave on, but where there is a will, there's a way, and massage therapy is rich in various modalities and techniques that can be used to accommodate you at any comfort level. In fact, some modalities, such as sports massage, are designed and best applied for when the client leaves their clothes on!
Please please please don't write off massage therapy if you've had a bad massage experience! Just like most things in life, you can't please 100% of the people 100% of the time. That really annoying massage therapist who wouldn't keep her mouth shut? Yeah, she probably has 50 clients who love her and are just as chatty. All that means is that she's not a good match for you. The therapist who wouldn't let up on the pressure? Probably has 50 clients who insist she stay deep no matter what they ask for. You get the idea. Those are personality mismatches. It doesn't mean they don't do good quality body work, (maybe they do, maybe they don't) but most likely you just need to try someone else. A really good, sensitive therapist should be able to adjust their pressure, conversation, and even techniques, to accommodate you.
What if I want more/less pressure?
The best thing you can do is ask. I will try to check in with you during the massage by saying something like "How does the pressure feel?" or " Would you like more or less pressure?" I'm not asking you for the fun of it, I care and really want to know! Being human, I may occasionally be caught up in how a muscle feels or thinking about the source of your tension and forget to ask, so if I do forget to ask, just let me know!