Massages are a popular form of pampering, but there are things you should know before you indulge. Here are five simple tips to make the experience worthwhile. Massage therapy is offered at many spas, salons and other outlets in their list of services, but not all are the same. Finding the right type for you requires research and your input. These tips will help you ready yourself for the experience.

Since massage is probably the oldest form of therapy practiced on the human body, there are many different techniques offered: strong, soft, stretching, oil, hot stone and rocking to name a few. Massage is primarily a method of relaxing the muscles and tissues of the body, increasing oxygen and flood flow. Done correctly it affects both mind and body and helps alleviate the stress and tension of everyday living. To make the most of your experience make sure you do these things.

First, get a referral from a person you know and trust. Massage can be very intimidating because you are putting your body (to a certain extent) at the mercy of someone else. Reputable massage therapists are licensed practitioners and have studied massage techniques. This enables them to be creative, intuitive, and flowing; never mechanical. They have also studied ethics provided increased levels of confidence for their clients.

Second, make an appointment and arrive 15 – 20 minutes early. This allows you to take care of the business, communicate your desires regarding the service and settle into the atmosphere and environment. Once you are there you can enjoy the amenities to the fullest and make mental notes regarding the things for future reference. Some facilities offer additional amenities like steam baths and saunas that you can enjoy while there.

Third, participate to your own level of comfort. Do not be afraid to speak up and tell your therapist what you need. You may undress to your comfort level during your service. Professional drying will provide and ensure comfort and privacy. Feel comfortable addressing the temperature, music level, or lighting. All can be made to meet your expectations. There are no reasonable questions or requests that can not be addressed. And once done, your heart rate to slow down, the outside noise surrounding you to take a time out and you will be prepared for the full benefit of the massage.

Fourth, be clear about your needs. Massage can focus on all parts of your body, head, foot, abdominal etc. Do not hesitate to speak directly with your technician regarding your personal needs and / or expectations. As a guest, it is your responsibility to tell them your preferences and concerns. Feel free to talk to the therapist about the amount of pressure you are comfortable with and if it needs to be adjusted during the massage, speak up.

Share any particular point of concern or anything else relative to the service they are to perform. It is your responsibility to be open and honest about your health information so that they are mindful and can make the appropriate adjustment in their service. It may be that you just need the holistic benefit of touch and therefore no specific comments are necessary. In any event, communicate your reason for your visit. They prefer to know because they want your experience to bring you back.

Finally, always treat staff and other guests with courtesy and respect. The purpose of massage therapy is relaxation and stress relief. Experience the persistence and quiet offered, silence your cell phones, limit even polite chatter, and use quiet voices.