There are many effective and important self-treatment techniques to insure a long, healthy and pain-free massage therapy career. Massage therapy is a fulfilling career path. However, it can also be very physically and emotionally demanding.
The risks involved in underestimating the physical demands of massage therapy are many. From work-related injury to burnout, massage therapists who don’t have a full understanding of the importance of self-care are likely to suffer injury at some point in their careers. Specific injuries that massage therapists frequently face are carpel tunnel syndrome, neck and shoulder strain, and back pain.
The best way to prevent injury as a massage therapist is to be in the best possible physical condition. This includes exercise, proper nutrition and diet, staying hydrated, getting enough sleep, and taking time out when needed for both physical rest and emotional tranquility.
It is also beneficial for massage therapists to adequately condition their bodies for the physical demands of massage therapy by using stretching techniques to help prevent muscle injury and pain. Stretching affected muscle groups after each massage session on a regular basis can alleviate tenderness and discomfort.
Massage therapists can also face emotional issues as part of their career demands. If massage therapists start feeling isolated in their work, the consequences may be hard to overcome. They might start feeling ineffective in the massage therapy they provide, feel lonely, emotionally spent and bored—all of which could end with a case of burnout and the loss of loyal clientele. Support of family and friends, as well as mentoring and peer support, can make a big difference in the emotional well-being of a massage therapist.
We are holding a class on Preventing Massage Therapy Overuse Injury on March 22 from 1pm to 5:30pm. This class will review myofascial trigger points, tell-tale signs of muscle dysfunction and best techniques to eliminate pain and remain pain-free.