I Am A Massage Therapist. Ask Me Anything.I worked in the field in New York State from 2001 - 2011.
F.P.A.Q. : Frequently Privately Asked Questions.
I receive a LOT of questions in my mail that would be really helpful for y'all, but I realise that sometimes a question just feels to sensitive or silly or embarassing to post publicly as a comment. I've scrubbed these questions and made sure they aren't revealing in any way, and I'll continue editing this post to reflect the answer that seem relevant. Keep the questions coming, even privately! No questions have been reproduced here without the permission of the original asker.
Q. My girlfriend is scheduled for a spa service. She has decided to go fully nude and the attendant is male. From your own experience how likely is he to see her fully nude/breasts/vagina? On a side note the place I go for my massages (rmt) allows me to go fully nude without draping and it is very professional. Just great to be able to relax nude without towels and sheets moving.
A. Some of you have asked this question with fear and great nervousness, hoping that no one will ever, ever, ever see any more of you than the palms of your hands and the soles of your feet. Others have been hoping for some excitement, wondering if there will be stories to be told when your partner comes home. It's true that massage combines pleasure and medicine in a way that can make some people very unsure.
For those of you who are hoping for misbehaviour, I have to deflate your illusions just a little. The fact is that an ethical and responsible therapist, properly trained, is just not that interested in seeing your nudity. When we are looking, it's fairly clinical. The skin is an organ like all the others, and offers a great deal of information on what's going on inside you from an evaluative perspective. It's true that there are some places where nudity without draping is allowable or even encouraged. I never worked in one of those places, and to be honest, I'm sort of glad: Keeping a massage room warm enough for the client to be nude makes it awfully hot for the (fully clothed) therapist slaving away over your body! In private practice, I have worked with clients in a lot less draping than I would in a spa setting, so it's not about skittishness. There is an issue of control, though. Should a confused receptionist or overzealous manager accidentally open the door, you'll be much more thankful for that sheet.
For those of you who are hoping to remain as hidden as possible, please know that your therapist is looking for YOUR comfort, not theirs. It's not about us. So if you want to be fully clothed the entire time, we may suggest some bodywork in the areas of shiatsu, Thai massage, or Reiki. If you're comfortable being on the table in underwear or in panties and socks or if you want to wear a hat, just say so. We'll work with you. The idea is to access the muscles efficiently, not to take voyeuristic advantage of your nakedness.
Q. My significant other and I like to give each other massages, and we would like to hire a massage therapist to give us a lesson or two (so we can get better at it). Do you have any suggestions for how we can find someone to do this?
A. I have never given a " lesson " the way you're describing, not for money. I have coached friends informally. I can't think of any reason not to do it; it just hasn't come up. My guess for the sake of both safety and everyone's comfort would be that you should ask around for a therapist who teaches. This is obviously easier if you live near one of the schools, but don't go thinking that just because your town isn't renowned for massage like Sedona or Phoenix that there ISn't a school. There might be. Start at the top, because it sounds like you're looking for genuinely professional advice: Ask at the local community college, check with your chiropractor. At the other end of the spectrum ( but still respectable ) have a look at your local free press newspaper. The schools often advertise there. Having found someone who teaches, even if they don't practice regularly they may be interested. Also you may be eligible for some of the continuing education courses offered for massage therapy graduates. Not all of them have prerequisites, but of course, call ahead for information.
Q. What are your favorite parts of the male anatomy? You said "My personal preference runs toward the weekend warrior dads. I do my best work on guys who aren't too 'ripped' but do actually use their bodies as tools." What body parts are you 'into' ?
A. It depends what kind of work he typically does. I like forearms and hands... they are sort of unexpected places to spend a lot of time, but they can offer a lot of relief. People don't usually realise how much tension they carry in their hands, and when that's been worked out well, people find they relax a lot. Guys who drive for a living appreciate work to the hamstrings and calves; driving is sitting with enforced muscle tension. The ba
Ah, but if you're asking a much more personal question, I love working a nice abdomen . Not too cut, not too swollen ? Stretching hip bones away from ribs is fantastic. For my own (sadistic?) pleasure, I guess I like touching lower backs, upper thighs... I'm a fan of places where the blood comes up to the surface. So ... backs of knees, edges of armpits. But that's really more masochistic than sadistic. Because it's me that 's being tortured. They feel great and have no idea what's going on in my ... erm.. head. not pants. I was not going to say pants.
Q. How much can a perceptive massage therapist tell about a guy's 'equipment' when he's draped under a sheet and blanket (pulled out 'flat' for instance, not 'bunched'). If the draping is a sheet only, can you tell more, and how much more?
A. Everything. We know everything. Just stop trying to hide and it will all go much easier. Okay, seriously: it really is a lot. If you're under a sheet and a blanket together, you can hide a little, but we're going to have to move the blanket eventually. Don't think it changes anything to wear underwear either. Go by what your therapist requests: me personally, I tell my clients I prefer them as naked as possible. It's just easier for me to drape them than to try to work around elastic and seams.. but then I'm very professional about how I describe the process, and I don't seem to leave them feeling insecure. The relevant thing about our knowing as much as we know is .. well, not to spoil anything for you, but we rarely care. Not don't care as in we're callous and disregarding you, just... we see an awful lot of them. And we're not working ON them, just... around them, so.. it's pretty matter -of -fact. If there's one that's particularly odd, I'll admit we may smirk, but likely only when you cant see us.