Frequently Asked Questions

 
 

Your massage therapy session is for you! Please feel free to ask questions before, during, and after your appointment.

Have other questions? Contact Me »

Photo credit:  Spinney . [Image description: Gabriel points out an area of the body on an anatomical poster to answer a client's question.]

Photo credit: Spinney. [Image description: Gabriel points out an area of the body on an anatomical poster to answer a client's question.]

What are the benefits of massage and bodywork?

Massage and bodywork can help release chronic muscular tension and pain, improve circulation, increase joint flexibility, reduce mental and physical fatigue and stress, promote faster healing of injured muscular tissue, improve posture, and reduce blood pressure. Massage and bodywork is also known to promote better sleep, improve concentration, reduce anxiety and create an overall sense of well-being.

Are there any medical conditions that would make massage or bodywork inadvisable?

Yes! For example: fever, infectious diseases, fractures, bleeding/burns and acute injuries. That's why it's imperative that, before you begin your session, you inform the practitioner of any major health issues or conditions (i.e. surgeries, injuries, pregnancy). Depending on the condition, approval from your doctor may be required. For more information go to: https://www.massagenow.com/contraindications/. If you have any concerns or questions ahead of your appointment feel free to contact me.

Where will my massage session take place?

A private space at Davis Square Healing Arts, a community of independent practitioners located in Somerville at 259 Elm Street. The entrance to the building is a couple doors down towards Davis square from Diesel Cafe, and just before the large clock post on the sidewalk. We are on the third floor, and there is an elevator for your convenience. Make a left out of the elevator–the door to the lobby is on your left (Suite 300B).

What do I do when i arrive?

Once you’ve entered the lobby, feel free to help yourself to a glass of water (or tea in the cooler months) and have a seat! I will come greet you when it is time for your appointment. If it's your first appointment, please arrive 10mins early to fill out an intake form.

Do I have to take my clothes off?

Massage and bodywork techniques can be performed with the client completely unclothed or clothed; it is entirely up to you what you want to wear. You should undress to your level of comfort. You will be properly draped during the entire session to keep you warm and comfortable. Only the area being worked on will be exposed.

Will the practitioner be present when I get undressed?

No. The client will have privacy when getting undressed before and dressed after the session.

What parts of my body will be massaged?

A full-body session can include work on the back, arms, legs, feet, glutes, hands, head, neck, upper pecs, and shoulders. The practitioner will check in before each session to find our what areas the client would like focused on or not worked on.

What does a massage therapy session feel like?

There are numerous types of massage techniques. In a general Swedish massage, your session may start with broad, flowing strokes that will help calm your nervous system and relax exterior muscle tension. As your body becomes relaxed, pressure will gradually be increased to relax specific areas and relieve areas of muscular tension. Often, a light oil or lotion is used to allow your muscles to be massaged without causing excessive friction to the skin. The oil also helps hydrate your skin. You should communicate immediately if you feel any discomfort so that another approach may be taken.

What should I do during the massage?

During the massage, make yourself comfortable. The practitioner will either gently move you or tell you what is needed throughout the session (such as lifting your arm). Many people just close their eyes and completely relax, communicating if/when they need more or less pressure, another blanket, or anything else relevant to the session. If you have any questions regarding the session or about the particular technique you are receiving, feel free to ask! Sometimes clients chat or fall asleep / drift off...both are perfectly fine.

Do you offer sliding scale sessions?

Yes! I offer a certain number of sliding scale sessions per month. My sliding scale rate is $45-85 and I refer clients to this guide. Please contact me for more information.

I'm Fundraising for an organization. Do you donate gift certificates?

Yes, I'm always looking to support social justice groups and am happy to donate 1 gift certificate per month to a fundraiser benefiting the local community. Contact me for more information!

What If I'm embarrassed or Anxious about someone seeing or touching my body?

That is completely normal. I aspire to make clients feel in control and comfortable at all times. Please let me know at any point if there are any areas you would not like me to work on. As a massage therapist, I have worked with hundreds of clients. I aspire to respect and honor the uniqueness of every body! 

Is your space accessible?

Accessibility needs are unique to each person, so please feel free to contact me ahead of your session if you have any specific questions about the space or the format of our session. The building is wheelchair accessible and I use an electric lift massage table. I have a variety of pillows that can be used to make different body positions more comfortable upon request. Guide/therapy dogs are welcome in the space. The office suite is *not* scent free. I do use fragrance-free detergent on the sheets and unscented oils such as jojoba. There are two wheelchair accessible restrooms (gendered) down the hall and one all-gender restroom (not wheelchair accessible) in the suite.

Is massage recommended before and/or after surgery?

This completely depends on what type of surgery, and it is best to ask your surgeon directly. Massage leading up to surgery can help decrease stress and anxiety. Once cleared by your doctor, massage after surgery can help increase mobility and the flow of blood/oxygen, break up scar tissue,  and improve healing time.

What if I'm transgender or non-binary?

I am passionate about holding space for members of the trans and non-binary community to explore massage therapy. My philosophy is to follow the clients lead in terms of what they'd like to discuss and above all provide an affirming, non-judgement space.

How will I feel after the massage session?

Most people feel very relaxed. Some enjoy relief from aches and pains developed from tension or repetitive activity. After an initial period of feeling slowed down, people often experience increased energy, heightened awareness, and greater productivity. Being well hydrated is always recommended, especially after receiving bodywork.

Am I supposed to tip massage therapists?

Gratuity is not required and always at the discretion of the client. It can be a nice gesture especially if your massage therapist isn't the business owner (since they only receive a percentage of the fee you pay for the session). Positive reviews and referrals are other great ways to acknowledge you enjoyed the session!