A massage therapist can help heal both soft tissue and skeletal injuries. Physicians can refer you to a massage therapist who will both directly help with your injuries but also assist you in many lifestyle and self-care practises.
Massage therapists work to alleviate pain, relieve stress, and improve the health and well being of their clients by the mobilization of the soft tissue including skin, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and connective tissue.
Massage therapy is defined as the manual manipulation or mobilization to affect normalization of the soft tissue of the human body.
Massage therapists may include adjunctive therapies such as hydrotherapy, mild abrasives, heliotherapy, or topical preparations not classified as prescription drugs, mechanical devices and tools that mimic or enhance manual actions, and instructed self care.
Massage therapy may be provided in response to a physicians prescription or in conjunction with other therapeutic modalities.
GENERAL RESPONSIBILITIES OF A MASSAGE THERAPIST
- assessing if a client needs massage for relaxation or for treatment
- if a client needs massage treatment, assessing the client’s physical condition and case history
- deciding on a form of massage and blends of oils for the massage
- applying oil to the skin
- massaging and kneading muscles and soft tissue
- discussing the causes of a client’s stress or pain
- advising on exercise patterns and lifestyle habits
- if necessary, referring the client to another type of therapist or doctor
PERSONAL ATTRIBUTES AND SKILLS TO LOOK FOR IN A MASSAGE THERAPIST
Good massage therapists are intuitive and scientific at the same time. They have sound knowledge of body parts and functions, and a good ’feel’ for people’s needs. Massage therapists should be good listeners who can respect their patients’ privacy and gain their trust. A lot of stamina is needed to be able to massage several patients in a day so therapists must be in good physical condition.