ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Good Massage or Bad Massage/How To Tell the Difference

Updated on October 26, 2011

Good Massage or Bad Massage

This article is meant to educate readers about what constitutes a "bad massage" and what constitutes a "good massage" and how you can tell the difference. Most of us are lucky and get good massages, but there are some of us that might have been unfortunate enough to receive a "bad massage". A lot of people do not recognize it when they are getting a bad massage because they think the pain is all part of it. Well, I am here to tell you, there should be NO PAIN in a normal Swedish Massage and most other modalities/therapies. There are certain places on our bodies that a therapist MUST avoid when giving you a massage: heavy pressure on these places could lead to injury or complications to your health.

So, what are these places? Let's find out!

1.) Your eyes! ( there is no reason for your eyes to be touched or pushed in)

2.) The front of your throat! (Anterior neck)

3.) Breasts (go to a doctor for a mammogram, do not let a therapist touch your breasts, ever, unless a certain treatment is prescibed by their doctor!!!) This does not pertain to men, however, because athletes and bodybuilders need their "pecs" worked on.

4.)Spinous Process or right on the spine. ( This could cause nerve damage to the spinal cord )

5.) Xiphoid Process or you tailbone! This doesn't feel very good anyway.:)

6.)Budial Fold or...yep, you guessed it.... your buttcrack! There is no reason for the therapist to go near here!

**** MAJOR CAUTION AREAS***** ( could cause injury )

1) Temporal Area - your temples (light pressure is fine for clockwise rotation rubbing for a headache but no further pressure should be applied)

2) Axillary region - your armpits ( special exception for Acupuncture, acupressure, and Shiatsu: you can find further information on these on my website )

3) The front of your elbows! Major arteries and blood vessels could be affected.

4) Popliteal Fossa - the back of the knees!

5) Kidneys - area covers T-11 to L-3 ( 11th Thoracic vertebre to the 3rd Lumbar vertebre )

6. Ankles of pregnant women! This is a trigger point and a meridian point (oriental medicine also discussed on my website) and if pressed too hard could induce labor prematurely!

Yes, these places are the danger zones and if your therapist isn't paying attention and you feel any pain or discomfort in any of these areas, don't be afraid to speak up and let them know what's going on!

The therapist is always supposed to ask your permission before working on your glutes.

If any of these occur during your massage or treatment, you have received a "bad massage". Choose your therapist more carefully next time. :) There are very good ones out there with a lot of experience, you just have to do your research and not just "inny miney moe" around in the yellow pages. Don't be lazy and take the initiative! This is your body we are talking about and you need to take care of it the best you can. A good massage every 2 weeks will help you do just that. There are so many great benefits to your health and well being by getting a massage. Here's how you know you have gotten a good massage:

1.) The therapist respected boundaries while waiting for you to get undressed and on the table.

2.) The therapist regulated your breathing before starting

3.) Upon starting the Effleurage stage ( discussed on my website ) the therapist asked you if the pressure was ok.

4.) Therapist used smooth, relaxing strokes applying light to moderate pressure and not going near the danger zones or making you feel uncomfortable.

5. You fell asleep! :) This is a very good sign!

That, ladies and gentlemen is how you know you have gotten a "good massage"! Save some "take care of me" money and keep getting those massages and treatments. They will help you feel better, have more energy, be healthier AND happier along with prolonging your life! Thank you for your interest and I hope to see you again soon!

How to get a great massage and improve your overall health

Therapist #1 Rule : Do no harm!

There are some pathologies ( disorders, diseases, or conditions ) that people have and need to be considered when they get a massage. For example: diabetics can't have their legs worked on or its very limited because their disease has already make it easier for blood clots to form in the legs and when massaged these blood clots can travel up to the brain and heart causing a stroke and other related injuries. You can't just "willy nilly" walk in and get massages if you have a disease or disorder that is being treated with prescription medications. You need to talk to your doctor first and with his permission, enjoy your massages! You do also need to let your Massage Therapist know about your particular disease, condition, or disorder before you get the massage so they can determine how to go about it and what to avoid. This is very, very important.

Please don't be embarrassed about your disease and telling the therapist about it. Most therapists are in this profession because they want to help people to feel their best and heal. ( plus with this profession, there is no blood, :) So if they are a good therapist with good ethics, they will understand and with the information that you provide for them, they will figure out what kind of treatment is best for you. Believe me, it is WELL WORTH IT! Everyone has the right to a better and healthier life! Take advantage of that and take better care of yourself. You will live longer and be happier because massage evens out imbalances in your body. This means you will have to take less medication and maybe none at all once you have found a certain treatment that works for you. See "Deeper into the Rabbit Hole" on my website-

Great Stuff on Amazon - Healing with Massage Therapy

There are many books on Amazon that you can add to your bookshelf for further education and knowledge about how to take care of yourself with Massage Therapy and alternative medicine. You don't have to pop a pill for everything and these books will help you decide whether alternative medicine and holistic approach to healing is best for you or not! In my opinion, it is better than taking those prescription medications with those horrible side affects!

All of your suggestion and comments are greatly appreciated! If you have any questions I will be glad to answer them with the BEST of my knowledge. Enjoy the reading!

Suggestions/Comments/Questions - Ask me or tell me!

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Hi, I found your site after a google search. I had a massage six days ago and the massage therapist really, REALLY dug her fingers into my temples. It was agonising and she did it for a few minutes. I have been ill ever since and my temples are throbbing. You say above that the temples should only be massaged lightly. This was the total opposite. My Dr didn't seem to care when I saw him yesterday. Can you please let me know why the temples shouldn't be massaged hard? I'm trying to find out why I'm still in so much pain in that area.