Frequently Asked Questions:
What does an individualized session mean?
During the session, I work with your body and with your individual needs. I draw from many disciplines of massage practice, thinking of them as tools in my tool-belt to be drawn from rather than prescribed methods. By listening to the verbal and physical information you provide, I am able to choose methods that best fit what is needed in the moment. You are always encouraged to provide feedback on your experience during and after the session. Together, we'll find the best pathways to the healthy spirit within you.
What should people know/be prepared for ahead of time?
The most important thing to keep in mind as you prepare for your session is to come in with an open mind and spirit. Things that can help with this include getting plenty of sleep, healthful nutrition and adequate hydration, as well as wearing comfortable clothing and arriving at ease. Also, since we will be working together to identify what is needed for your session, it might be helpful to spend a few minutes ahead of time thinking about what you want to accomplish in your session, as well as any aspects of your physical history that might provide an informative context to our work.
What will I be wearing during my session?
The session takes place on a lightly heated, cushioned massage table with freshly cleaned sheets & blankets in a cozy room. You will have privacy to undress to your level of comfort, as I will leave the room to allow you time to get under the sheet and blanket on the massage table. You will be properly draped during the entire session. Only the part of the body being worked on will be uncovered to allow for hands-on contact.
What level of pressure is used during the session?
I encourage dialogue and feedback to achieve the right amount of pressure for the individual. It is an intuitive process and varies depending on the part of the body being worked on. Additionally, various massage disciplines utilize varying levels of pressure, from very light touch to deeper manipulation. Massage and bodywork is most effective when the body is not resisting, so any discomfort should be communicated immediately.
How to best absorb benefits after?
It is recommended to plan at least 2 hours for the session to allow time for arrival, pre and post session dialogue and a relaxed entrance and exit to the space. Each individual is different: you may experience a boost of energy, increased tiredness, thirst or appetite, a desire for stillness or a surge of creative output.
Because each session will be different and the outcome of the session won't be known, it is advised to clear your schedule as much as possible for the day. If you have the time available, you'll be able to give your body what it craves, be it a nap, bath, writing session or a big, healthy meal.
Massage can have the effects of a passive form of exercise, working muscles in new ways. Soreness may occur for up to 3 days, but if it persists longer it may require a change of approach in the next session.
How often should I get bodywork?
This depends on the results you are working towards, but the benefits of massage have been seen to increase and sustain with the frequency of sessions. In some cases, such as post-surgery or acute injuries, more frequent sessions can lead to remarkable progress.
According to researchers, the benefits of massage are said to be doubly powerful if taken in regular doses. Studies show that we can benefit from massage even in small (15 - 30 minute) doses, and that receiving bodywork two to three times a week is highly beneficial. Dr. Hernandez-Reif at University of Miami's Touch Research Institute has the ultimate prescription: "I feel a daily massage is optimal."
In a touch-deprived society, there's no denying the power of healthy, therapeutic touch. For all varieties of reasons we seek it out, touch therapies can be powerful allies in your healthcare regime (from massagetherapy.com).
What are some things I can do to participate in my process?
Part of the philosophy practiced at Mammal celebrates the participation of the individual in their own path to health, wellness and happiness. This can mean many things, but starts with a decision to be open to the work and curious about the process. In addition to massage therapy, there are many other ways to practice wellness such as mindfulness, working with one's breath, meditation and nutrition.