Karrie Osborn

Bodywork Etiquette

Guidelines To Help You Get The Most Out Of Your Session

Most massage aficionados remember the trepidation that came with their first massage. What should I expect? Will I have to take off my clothes? How much do I tip?

For relative newcomers to massage, the prospect of those first visits and their unknowns can be unnerving. Here are some basic bodywork etiquette guidelines to help you get the most out of your session, create a healthy client-therapist relationship, and address some of those unknowns.

The Bodywork Tree

Exploring The Bounty Of Bodywork

As a consumer of massage, you already know there are wonderful benefits to receiving therapeutic touch. And you’ve likely tried one or two variations of massage or bodywork as you’ve meandered along this path of complementary healthcare. But did you know there are at least 250 kinds of therapies that are part of this growing massage and bodywork tradition? From acupressure to Zero Balancing, there are a multitude of lush, leaf-filled branches on this bodywork tree, making it a perfect spot under which to throw a blanket and sit a while.

Skin Care

From Head To Toe

If you’re a fan of bodywork, there’s a little secret we need to let you in on—if you haven’t yet tried one, please do, because you’ll love a facial. A hydrating, cleansing, noninvasive facial is a close relative to massage and includes many of the same elements and philosophies that make massage good for you. To the massage benefits you’re already aware of, add aspects of cleansing, exfoliating, and hydrating and you’ve got the makings of a rejuvenating, healthful skin care experience.

Massage Medicine

For the Body and Mind

Do you remember your first massage? Maybe someone gave you a gift certificate for your birthday and that’s what first brought you to your massage therapist’s door. Maybe the promise of pain relief had you consider therapeutic massage as an option for the first time. Or, maybe it was a quest for renewed health and “balance” that prompted your initial venture into the world of bodywork.

Nurturing the World's Orphans

Using Touch to Heal Wounded Children

Their stories break your heart. Babies abandoned because they are the wrong gender. Toddlers given away when another new mouth comes into the family. Infants struggling to survive after they’ve lost both parents. We can’t change their stories, but we can give them hope and a fighting chance says Vonda Jump, senior research associate at Utah State University’s Early Intervention Research Institute.

Fountain of Youth

Increasingly Popular Facial Massage Provides Antiaging Effects

As a sinus/allergy sufferer, the cherry-on-top moment during my massage always comes when the therapist begins working my face. Tension dissipates quietly and without fuss from my unknowingly tight jowls. There is great sinus relief and passage opening in even the most gentle of strokes across my cheekbones. If I happen to be visiting a new massage therapist who doesn’t work that final facial zone, I leave feeling a bit disappointed and undone, regardless how great the rest of the treatment went.

Body Image

Learning to Love Who We Are

I look at my 3-year-old daughter and worry, have I unknowingly skewed her view of the world and her place in it? Despite my best efforts, have I already “tainted” her with my own lapses in self-esteem?

Essential Oils Simply Complex

What We Must Know

It’s not unusual to find little collections of essential oils hidden away in the treatment rooms of massage therapists and bodyworkers. While the addition of these oils to your massage repertoire can take your work to a new level, using them haphazardly, or without forethought or training, can be potentially harmful to you and your clients.


The Elderly’s Best Medicine

In their search for the fountain of youth, the age-crazed have dwindled fortunes and even tried bizarre “treatments,” all in the name of perpetuity. The irony is that the best age-defying elixir we have is as accessible as our kitchen faucet.