You sign up for massage, you pay for it, you want to get all the amazing benefits from it. You don't want to waste your time, or your money, or your energy, getting a massage that doesn't meet your needs... right? But do you know how to make the most of each and every massage you receive? Read on to get the BEST massage you've ever had!
1) ASK for what you need.
Your therapist is there to guide you to what you need , but the more details you can give about what you want to get out of the massage session, the better off you'll be.
2) Don't be timid to ask for modifications.
As the massage goes on, you'll find that some areas need deeper pressure, and other areas can't stand deep pressure. You'll enjoy the experience so much more if you're expressing your needs throughout the session, as well as before.
3) Use your Breath.
This one is probably one of the most important ones you can utilize. No matter what you came in for, a relaxing massage, or something specific and clinical, it's critical to remember to keep your focus on your breathing, throughout the session. It helps maintain a stress-free nervous system, and helps you to manage the intense moments that may come with a pain-relieving massage.
4) Arrive on Time!
Give yourself a good 10-15 minutes before your scheduled appointment so you aren't stressed or rushed right before your massage, and have time to get some water, use the restroom, and get comfortable.
5) Eat SOME before a massage, but not TOO much.
It's good to have a little bit of food in your belly before a massage, because your nervous system is reset to your "rest & digest" setting, which means your belly could be rumbling if you come in with an empty stomach. That being said, eating too much can cause you to feel bloaty and over-full during your session, and the last thing you want to do, is leave the treatment room, to use the restroom halfway through. I recommend bringing a small snack for your ride home, because I can pretty much guarantee you you'll be hungry after your massage.
6) Dress comfortably.
Most all of my clients actually show up in their pajamas, or something similar, when they come in for their massage. I see slippers, flannel pants, and cozy T-Shirts regularly, and I support those choices! If you want to continue the awesome feeling of comfort and coziness after your massage, I recommend wearing your softest duds to your massage.
7) Take the recommendations your therapist gives you after the treatment.
When your therapist gives you recommendations for after care, it's to help you maintain the integrity of the massage, after you leave. The after care is going to be customized for your needs, and will work if you use them!
8) Drink plenty of water afterwords.
You know this one already, probably, and the reason is less to flush toxins, and more just to stay hydrated and give your muscles the hydration THEY need after getting wrung out during a massage.
9) Avoid stimulants.
Try to not drink coffee before or after a massage, as it can dehydrate your tissue, and interfere with the relaxation effects of the treatment.
10) Check in with your therapist if you have ANY questions about your treatment or the aftercare you're given.
This will help you to modify any after care that doesn't make sense, or may need to be modified further for your needs.
There you have it! There's 10 ways to get the absolute MOST from your massage treatment, every single time!
I can't wait to help you feel your absolute best, here at True Balance Massage!
Call today and discover how great you're meant to feel!
We all probably know we have some space to improve our posture. We were likely told that as a kid, we need to "sit up straight" or "pull our shoulders back." While these recommendations probably came with loving intentions, and out of genuine concern for our well-being, they aren't super helpful. Good posture is more of an "in-learning" process than a "learning" process.
Each one of us has our own, highly functional, stable, and aligned posture, that keeps us from being in physical pain, and keeps our muscles from working too hard when we're doing everyday tasks. And because we all perform different daily activities, and that affects our posture individually, very differently. Basically- there is no ONE correct posture for everyone. The suggestions of "pull your shoulders back" and "stand up straight"-- simply aren't correct, or beneficial, for al of us, as simple as they are.
So- how do we know when we're in alignment? What benefits do we get from being in our "highest-functioning posture" (and what does that even mean?!)
When your body is in alignment with gravity and in your best posture...
You'll feel more confident.
You'll be standing taller, and energetically, carrying your heart forward into space, which projects confidence and high self-esteem to others. It's scientifically proven! check out THIS TedTalk by Amy Cuddy to learn more on how you can hack your posture to feel and come off more confident! When you're aligned and tall, you'll feel settled in with your innate power, and have more energy, too!
You'll be able to think better.
When your body is in great alignment, you're getting better oxygen to your brain, which means you can think more clearly, more quickly and you might even be able to remember the punchline to that old joke.
You'll be preventing pain for the long-term.
Much of the time, chronic pain, and injuries stem from poor posture, that is maintained throughout years of life. These muscle memory patterns are very strong, and they dictate how we move. When our movement patterns are dysfunctional, you create pain for yourself in the future. Prevent both chronic pain and acute injuries, by having your posture evaluated and corrected!
You'll sleep better!
As you're breathing better, with your new spiffy posture, standing upright, you'll be getting more oxygen to all of your muscles and organs, helping your body's natural processes to work. You'll be in less pain and won't be kept up by pain as you drift off.
Your headaches will vanish.
Poor posture will actively cause headaches. When your body is aligned, muscles in the back of your head, and around your neck aren't getting overworked and fatigued. Your head is heavy, (no really, all of our heads are heavy!) and putting excess tension on your neck and muscles of your skull will cause blood circulation to slow, and knots to form in muscle tissue, causing more pain, and dysfunction.
Your joints will love you!
Relieving undue tension and pressure from joints in the body helps them to function at their prime, and prevent injury and damage. Abnormal (read: poor posture) use of joints and muscles will cause uneven weight distribution, and premature wear on joints.
Wherever you're starting with your journey to a new and improved posture, True Balance Massage can help you determine exactly what you need, and help you get there. Not only that, but we'll help you stay better for longer, too, with customized after-care exercises and stretches to maintain the work we do.
Call True Balance Massage Therapy today to discover how great you're meant to feel!
Just as the seasons change, so do we! And our bodies are feeling it. You may have noticed as the winter season has officially started, that your skin has become more dry due to less humidity in the air, that your circulatory system may have a harder time keeping your hands, feet, nose and ears warm. You maybe notice that your joints have gotten a little stiffer due to the lessened circulation of blood getting to them, and the changing barometric pressure in the atmosphere. Shorter days in the wintertime mean that we are exposed to, and absorbing less, Vitamin D, which affects our immune system, (our ability to fight illness) mood, and energy regulation.
And of course we are all too familiar with how our bodies are more prone to get sick during this challenging time of year.
Massage therapy can be an amazing asset to you during the winter season, in so many ways! Massage will always help boost your immune system as it moves around your lymphatic fluid, and moves around blood to help "clean" out any viruses or bacteria that may otherwise cause infection or illness. True Balance Massage also offers dry brushing, and tutorials on dry brushing, so you can learn techniques to keep your immune system up and running, all year long. (not to mention keep your skin healthy, and glowing!)
True Balance Massage also offers hot foot soaks that help to increase your circulation, obviously mostly to the feet, where circulation often has a harder time reaching when it's colder outside. Besides being a luxurious treat for your feet, it's very therapeutic for the entire body. Infused with your choice of essential oil blends, which make their way into your body through your feet, you'll be feeling the effects of the foot soak all day long, and even longer!
Facial massage can also be a powerful way to help improve your immune system, reduce stress, care for your skin, and reduce nasal congestion that tends to crop up this time of the year. Your facial massage can also have therapeutic essential oils infused into the jojoba oil, so you're getting a double boost of immune-strengthening powers! Try one during your next massage treatment, you will not regret it!
I am here to help you feel your absolute best all year around, and I truly believe in the power of massage to help you stay balanced in the winter seasons.
You do not have to be uncomfortable, sick, or cold this year, use massage to keep you where you want to be!
Discover how great you're meant to feel, here at True Balance Massage!
Making the Pain Posture Connection... a seldomly discussed topic in the wellness arena, but something that deserves attention and education.
How do I know if my pain is related to my posture? Most all of us are participating in dysfunctional habits that can severely alter the way our posture is aligned. When it is out of alignment, we will certainly feel pain and discomfort. When our body and our posture is in alignment, our muscles can hold us up against gravity, perform activities we love to do, and keep us tall and healthy all our lives.
Some giveaway cues that our posture is directly causing our pain or dysfunction are as follows. These key signals are telling you that you are heightening your risk of injury, and in danger of creating pain and imbalance later in life.
Cue #1: Your pain is idiopathic.
It seems to come and go, and doesn't necessarily follow a pattern in the times, activities or ways that it shows up. It seems to come out of nowhere, randomly, for no reason that makes sense. It becomes hard to identify the cause because of how sporadic it seems. f you have suffered no injuries to the area you're feeling pain in, or otherwise, and yet you're getting symptoms, chances are very high that your pain is related to your posture!
Cue# 2: It seems to come on when you're engaging in repetitive movements.
Now, repetitive movements themselves can cause pain and dysfunction, but with overuse and continual repetitive movements, you will begin to notice that your posture will change to accommodate for those movements. In time, this will become your new normal, and pain will follow, no doubt.
Cue #3: You get seemingly random tension headaches.
There are many potential causes of headaches, and posture cannot be pointed to as the be-all, end-all of headache causes, however... it is worthwhile to note that headaches unrelated to hereditary factors, injuries, or dehydration, could very well be caused by postural distortion. If you get headaches pretty frequently, with no known cause or reason, your posture can totally play a role in them. It's a good idea to have your posture checked out by the pros at True Balance Massage to see which type of postural distortion is causing your headaches. Oftentimes, it's simpler than you think, and even more simple to resolve.
Cue #4: Nothing seems to get rid of the pain for longer than a day or two.
If you have postural problems, it means your body has been creating patterns from the movement habits you have established for it. Your body will pretty much do whatever you tell it. And the old saying "neurons that fire together, wire together?" That applies to muscle nerves too! So, it follows that the more you're participating in these subconscious movement habits, the more ingrained they become, not only in your brain, but in your body. If you feel you have tried everything, heat, ice, stretching, strengthening, physical therapy, chiropractic care, spa-type massage, and other at home remedies with no lasting results, your posture is most likely the culprit.
Cue #5: It's been going on for as long as you can remember.
If you can't remember exactly how long the pain has been going on (like in the instance of an injury) and yet there is most certainly pain and discomfort happening, your pain is probably caused by your chronic behaviors, or, posture. Posture causes pain that kind of lingers in the background of your everyday life. It's there, you've become pretty accustomed to it, and you can manage it enough to get through the day. But it's always there. Posture pain patterns take a long time to form, and then sometimes they can be forced to the forefront of your mind when you injure yourself, and all of a sudden it's impossible to ignore. I work with many clients who come to me well after the pain has been a chronic issue, and yet something more drastic happened that set the body over the edge, and made the pain completely obvious and painful. This is incredibly common, and again, very easy to resolve and prevent in the future.
So there you have it. Five ways your posture is most likely the cause of your chronic (ongoing) pain. If you feel you have posture problems, or you know you're a desk-job sloucher, True Balance Massage has the sustainable answers you've been looking for. Using posture assessments to see where you are at, and how your positioning in space is affecting your balance in your body, we can discover so many great clues that will help us along your journey of long lasting healing. There's no posture problem that's exactly like any other, and your massage treatment here at True Balance Massage reflects that. You're given treatments you can handle, aftercare that works, and answers that make sense.
You leave our office, after every treatment, feeling empowered, educated, strong, and relaxed.
Call and schedule your massage with Erin today, and see how great you're MEANT to feel!
It's that time of year again... It seems like everyone is getting sick, coughing all over the place, sneezing, and chugging Emergen-C like nobody's business.
Luckily, for you keen-bean, I'll teach you how something as simple and enjoyable as massage therapy can help you stay healthy all year around.
When you receive regular massage, you are supporting your body's natural systems, from all angles. Massage will help you reduce your stress, and you may know that when you're stressed out, especially over the long-term, with low-grade stress, your immune system takes the initial, significant hit. Stress produces an adrenaline rush in the fight or flight response. Chronic, prolonged stress suppresses our immunity and makes us vulnerable to illness and disease. Under normal conditions, your body maintains a balanced state of health. Massage helps to maintain this balanced state, and keeps your low-grade stress at bay.
With regular massage as well, you are moving your blood around the entire body, which means you're also moving your lymphatic fluid. The lymphatic system supports the body's immunity function and involves several organs (adenoids, thymus, tonsils, spleen), hundreds of lymph nodes, and a network of vessels. A clear fluid called lymph flows through these vessels and filters metabolic waste through the lymph nodes. These wastes include bacteria, dead cells, fats, fluids, proteins, and viruses. Your lymph fluid is what helps you fight viruses, and helps to keep you healthy all the time. When this fluid is moving properly and being processed consistently, your white blood cells (your virus fighters) are able to do their job and keep you healthy, and those waste products are dealt with in a sustainable way. When we are sedentary throughout the day (hello, desk job...) our blood and lymphatic fluid are not moving around our bodies as well as they're supposed to, and this can lead to suppressing your immune system. Staying active is a huge part of fighting incoming immunity threats, and regular massage is right up there too. It needs to be a consistent part of your health regime to keep you healthy, strong and keep illness at bay, all year around.
While any and all massage types will help you boost your immune system and stay healthy all year around, Manual Lymphatic Drainage takes the cake for the most effective modality. It's a light touch modality, and is performed VERY slowly, to access and fully release the lymphatic fluid from areas that may not get a lot of movement regularly. It's a very non-intrusive modality, and feels amazing when you're finished. Don't be surprised if you do get a little bit of a detoxifying sensation for the next couple of days after your treatment, this is your body actually fighting back anything that's going on in your system, and is a harmless, necessary part of the lymphatic passage clearing.
Try a lymph drainage session SOON, and see how great you're really meant to feel!
I can't wait to help you feel your absolute best, so go ahead and give True Balance Massage a call and we'll get you set up for your best, healthiest winter you've ever had!
So... you've heard me talk a lot about posture, I'll bet, and you may be wondering how it's related to massage.
You may even picture in your head people in old-timey books and movies, with books on their heads. (like the photo above!) How does something like massage help with something like posture?
You may be thinking... "I know massage helps me relax.. but I thought my posture was pretty much set in stone when I was younger?"
Well.. massage has a ton of other benefits besides helping you to relax mentally and physically. Massage therapy, when performed in a specific, therapeutic way, can ultimately lead to your muscle memory releasing old unhealthy patterns, and relieving old, stale pain so the body can pick up new muscle memory patterns that serve it better.
When the body is in pain, a cycle of stress and more pain is engaged; a form of self protection to help prevent the body from damaging itself further. Unfortunately, it's very easy for this cycle to get out of control, and continue for long periods of time. In this case, as in the case of an old injury that was never effectively treated, the body will continue trying to defend itself by disabling certain movement patterns, or sending unnecessary pain signals to the brain to try and discourage activities that might cause more pain. It's a vicious cycle that can lead to damaging postural patterns that can last for years.
Massage therapy is a very powerful option, most especially with posture correction, because it breaks this cycle on both levels, on the psychological level, as well as the physical level. When you're receiving massage, your body is receiving signals from your brain that it is safe, and can let its defenses down. When this state is reached, the bodywork can take on very transformative effects, and create lasting results.
When you're finished with a treatment at True Balance Massage, you are given exercises and stretches to perform at home and in between treatments, to help maintain the integrity and effects of the work, and also to help create a sustainable, lasting pain-free posture.
Have any questions about how massage can help you improve your posture? Drop those in the comments, and I'll help you learn even more!
Join me and see how great you're meant to feel!
One of my favorite things about practicing massage, especially postural massage, is educating, and empowering my clients. One way to do that, is to help them relieve pain wherever they are, not just in the treatment room.
A couple of years ago I stumbled upon one of the best therapeutic self-massage products I had ever seen or used. Rad Rollers, created by a Denverite, are tools I never leave at home. I find myself using them in between clients to relieve upper back soreness, work my feet a little bit, and I feel great even after a busy day. I teach workshops on these amazing products too, so you can give them a test drive before committing! (SO excited for the workshop tomorrow.)
As someone who is seriously going all the time, it makes such a huge difference to me to be able to feel better, wherever I am. It's something I can throw in my bag for the day, and use it whenever. They are also so diverse that I can use them for a full body workover. It's the perfect set of tools for a hard gym day, and helps my recovery immensely! I always notice a day after a workout that I'd forgotten to use my Rad Rollers.
It might sound contradictory for a massage therapist to sell self treatment tools, but I stand by these forever. I know that getting onto the massage table can be a tricky thing to do in our busy lives, and I find this to be an incredible way to keep up when you need it the most: when you're on vacation, at the gym, on a hike, or after a long road trip. I am committed to clients (and YOU) feeling better every day, in every way.
Come see how great you're MEANT to feel and move, I can't wait to meet you!
Erin Stebbins, LMT, True Balance Massage
Thanks for visiting! I am happy to have you here!
I write this as an introductory post, a chance for you to get to meet the therapist behind the hands, and learn what I'm all about, both in an out of the treatment room.
Being devoted to movement healing, the physiology of the human body, and the very nature of healing, is what originally brought me into the massage field. It reached out to me with open arms.
As my practice has grown and evolved, I have been learning endlessly about movement patterns, how people actually heal, and what really is the source of most peoples' stress. It's an evolutionary process, something that never stops, and still continues for me to this day. I am constantly driven by the success of my clients, seeing how they progress and grow through challenges and surpass pain they thought may be there forever with them. It's an incredibly empowering experience for me, and I am fortunate enough to delve deep into it, every day of my work.
My specialty is posture therapy. You probably have some questions about that, I would imagine. I believe alignment within the human body to be absolutely essential to health, growth, and healing. Physical alignment allows our bodies to move freely, to reach and even surpass its potential, and allows YOU to live completely pain free every day. Unfortunately these are not things that we are educated about early on, or hardly ever, for that matter. Our ideas of health aligned posture typically come from visuals of 1950's prim and proper women with books stacked on their heads, or we have traumatic memories of our grandmothers slapping us out of our slouching. Not the best incentives to create balance and alignment, I don't think!
What I bring to the table is a new way of thinking about the body and YOUR particular brand of movement. Each and every time you come in, we take into consideration every activity you love and participate in regularly. We assess how these activities are playing a role in your chronic pain, and then we develop an easy plan to mitigate these factors, and sustainably reduce your pain. We find ways for you to do what you love, so that you don't have to sacrifice your body's balance.
I used to strive for postural perfection with all my clients, and now, I realize that is a serious disservice, and an impossibility. Now i strive for Functionality within posture, for all my clients. The results have been astounding, long lasting, and gratifying for everyone involved!
When your body has all the available energy it needs to move properly, and when it has the ability to provide strength, stability, mobility and ease for you in everything you do, your quality of life is immensely improved. You don't find yourself held back by that old nagging ache anymore, you find yourself free of those migraines that have been pressing at the edges of your consciousness since you can remember. You're free to be you, you're free to enjoy your life, and you're free to enjoy life as it's meant to be, pain free and fun.
Come see how great you're MEANT to feel and move, I can't wait to meet you!
Erin Stebbins, LMT, True Balance Massage