How to choose a massage therapist
Submitted by Marcia Smith of Body Harmony Massage Therapy
Finding a good massage therapist who suits your needs can be challenging. Here are a few tips and things to keep in mind if you are searching for a quality therapist.
First of all, you need to find a therapist who is licensed and insured. These show that the therapist is approaching massage as a profession and that they are taking continuing education to keep upgrading their skills.
Being licensed doesn’t guarantee skill or training, so you want to look for someone who has a certificate of professional training as well as advanced trainings in any modalities they are advertising. For instance, eight hours of training in reflexology does not make you a reflexologist.
Other good signs that the therapist is a quality professional include: helpful brochures, cards, and/or a website, membership in a professional organization and professional attire.
But perhaps most helpful is to get a personal recommendation from someone you know. If you don’t have a personal referral, look for testimonials on the therapist’s website, on online reviews such as Angie’s List. Angie’s List reviews are perhaps the most reliable, since only members can place them, and the process in creating a review is thorough in order to insure credibility.
Be prepared with your questions when you call for an appointment, and you can get a good sense of the professionalism and personality of the therapist and whether you think you’ll be compatible with them.
Once you’ve arrived at your appointment, make sure you let the therapist know everything about your health and any preferences you have for depth of pressure, room temperature, musical choices, allergies to oils or lotions and so on. Be sure to speak up during the massage if you need the therapist to make any adjustments to any of these variables.
If you’ve done a little homework, congratulations! You’re likely to enjoy a very good massage session that is relaxing and therapeutic.
Body Harmony Massage Therapy is located in Pittsburgh. Smith is a licensed massage therapist that serves the east end and eastern suburbs of Pittsburgh. She has been in practice for 17 years and specializes in deep tissue and trigger point therapy for relaxation, rehabilitation and pain relief. Smith also was an instructor in trigger point therapy for nine years at the Pittsburgh School of Massage Therapy.
As of Sept. 16, 2011, this service provider was highly rated on Angie’s List. Ratings are subject to change based on consumer feedback, so check AngiesList.com for the most up-to-date reviews. The views expressed by this author do not necessarily reflect those of Angie’s List.