Stephanie Oakley, LMT

Seeking Life Balance through Intentional Bodywork

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions...that most don't ever ask...

Should I talk during the session?

This is YOUR session.  If you feel like talking, you are absolutely welcome to talk.  I can and will carry a conversation with you.  It is very common for new clients to want to talk, to get to know the therapist working on them, or just to ease the new relationship tension.  If you don't feel like talking, you are entirely welcome to stay silent and let the relaxation set in.  Clients get the most out of their massage when they can turn off their brain and let the bodywork take over.  For this reason, I will most likely not initiate much conversation unless a client indicates they want to talk.  Sometimes I guess wrong, so I welcome my clients to let me know what they prefer.

 

Do I need to take my underwear off?

I invite my clients to do what makes them most comfortable.  Some therapists use a "clinical drape" where the sides of the buttocks are not covered. In my practice, gluts will always be draped and covered.  I do work gluts under the sheet but I keep them covered at all times.  I can do a more comprehensive and smooth massage if underwear is removed.  I can work the entirety of the low back, I can work the gluts more smoothly, and I can work higher on the legs of male clients.

 

Massage my butt??

Massaging the gluts is probably the most intimate part of massage, AND there is never any sexual intention with professional massage.  It can be very beneficial and soothing for the client to get glut work.  It is very common for clients to have low back tension and tightness in their gluts and hips. Often, clients don't even realize how much tension they hold in this area until they are worked.  If it is something that you would like worked, but have reservations, please don't hesitate to talk to me about it.  If you are uncomfortable with direct contact with the gluts, I can also work on top of the sheet.

 

Should I help the Therapist move my body as needed throughout the massage?

I encourage my clients to become a rag doll on the table.  If I need to move your arm, head, or leg, I'd prefer to do all the work so that my client can completely relax all of their muscles.  I do understand it can be difficult to let oneself completely go, but I encourage you to do so.

 

Where will my massage or bodywork session take place?
Must I be completely undressed?
Will the practitioner be present when I disrobe?
Will I be covered during the session?
What parts of my body will be massaged?
What will the massage or bodywork feel like?
Are there different kinds of massage and bodywork?
What should I do during the massage or bodywork session?
How will I feel after the massage or bodywork session?
What are the benefits of massage and bodywork?
Are there any medical conditions that would make massage or bodywork inadvisable?

Where will my massage or bodywork session take place?
Your massage or bodywork session will take place in a warm, comfortable, quiet room. Soft music may be played to help you relax. You will lie on a table especially designed for your comfort.

Must I be completely undressed?
Most massage and bodywork techniques are traditionally performed with the client unclothed; however, it is entirely up to you what you want to wear. You should undress to your level of comfort. You will be properly draped during the entire session.

Will the practitioner be present when I disrobe?
The practitioner will leave the room while you undress, relax onto the table, and cover yourself with a clean sheet.

Will I be covered during the session?
You will be properly draped at all times to keep you warm and comfortable. Only the area being worked on will be exposed.

What parts of my body will be massaged?
A typical full-body session will include work on your back, arms, legs, feet, hands, neck, and shoulders.  I can also include gluts.  Please don't hesitate to let me know what areas you want and don't want worked. 

What will the massage or bodywork feel like?
A relaxing Swedish massage is often a baseline for clients. In a general Swedish massage, your session may start with broad, flowing strokes that will help calm your nervous system and relax exterior muscle tension. As your body becomes relaxed, pressure will gradually be increased to relax specific areas and relieve areas of muscular tension. Often, a light oil or lotion is used to allow your muscles to be massaged without causing excessive friction to the skin. The oil also helps hydrate your skin. You should communicate immediately if you feel any discomfort so that another approach may be taken. Massage and bodywork are most effective when your body is not resisting.

Are there different kinds of massage and bodywork?
There are numerous types of massage and bodywork; various techniques utilize different strokes, including basic rubbing strokes, rocking movement, posture and movement re-education, application of pressure to specific points, and more. We can discuss which methods may be most appropriate for you.

What should I do during the massage or bodywork session?
Prior to the massage, feel free to ask the practitioner any questions about the technique or the upcoming session. During the massage, make yourself comfortable. The practitioner will either gently move you or tell you what is needed throughout the session (such as lifting your arm). Many people just close their eyes and completely relax, communicating if/when they need more or less pressure, another blanket, or anything else relevant to the session. If you have any questions regarding the session or about the particular technique you are receiving, feel free to ask.

How will I feel after the massage or bodywork session?
Most people feel very relaxed. Some experience freedom from long-term aches and pains developed from tension or repetitive activity. After an initial period of feeling slowed down, people often experience increased energy, heightened awareness, and greater productivity which can last for days.

What are the benefits of massage and bodywork?
Massage and bodywork can help release chronic muscular tension and pain, improve circulation, increase joint flexibility, reduce mental and physical fatigue and stress, promote faster healing of injured muscular tissue, improve posture, and reduce blood pressure. Massage and bodywork is also known to promote better sleep, improve concentration, reduce anxiety and create an overall sense of well-being.

Are there any medical conditions that would make massage or bodywork inadvisable?
Yes. That's why it's imperative that, before you begin your session, the practitioner asks general health questions. It is very important that you inform the practitioner of any health problems or medications you are taking. If you are under a doctor's care, it is strongly advised that you receive a written recommendation for massage or bodywork prior to any session. Depending on the condition, approval from your doctor may be required.

Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals
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