Feel Amazing
Relax and unwind at my luxurious and modern clinic set in Handforth, near Wilmslow, Cheshire. I offer Clinical Reflexology, Hot Stone Massage, Indian Head Massage and Aromatherapy treatments.

Looking after yourself as a therapist


Most busy therapists can find themselves working five or six days a week whilst juggling being a taxi driver for their family and general cook and bottle washer. I often hear that people who have been working in the holistic and beauty industry have had to reduce the amount they work due to injury.  What can we do to protect ourselves and ensure we have a long and happy work life?

The first step is obviously safe practice. If working from a clinic or salon make sure the therapy couch/chair/table is at an optimum height for you so you don’t have to slouch or stretch. Be mindful of your posture – are you sitting tall with feet firmly grounded on the floor? Are you moving as you massage rather than trying to complete a whole treatment from a static position? Small changes such as bending your knees and using your weight behind your strokes rather than getting all the pressure from your wrists and fingers can protect your joints.

Similarly, if you are a mobile therapist, as I started out, take the time to set up treatments so you are comfortable. How many times do we begin a treatment thinking it will be fine to sit on the floor or a low stool but several minutes in we realise we’re already getting uncomfortable? Not good for ourselves and it will probably mean the treatment we give isn’t the best. If in doubt change the set up as it’s simply not worth carrying out a treatment to the detriment of your own body and health.

It is also important to know your own weaknesses and protect yourself from them. I know that, following an unfortunate argument with someone’s shopping trolley, breaking my wrist several years ago means I can no longer carry out massage or reflexology all day. I decided to branch out into natural nail care and shellac to reduce the workload on my wrist. Yes, I’ve been accused of ‘selling out’ and ‘going over to the dark side of beauty’. Well, you know what – I like it over here and I know my limitations so it works perfectly for me (and my clients).

If you know you have a weakness then adapt, after all, we adapt out treatments for each client’s needs so we should also be looking at adapting how we work. Massage therapists could look to alternatives to using hands for massage such as ‘no hands massage’ or hot stones. If, as a therapist, you have a bad back, find ways to change your routine to suit you whilst still giving an effective massage.

Equally important is keeping yourself fit and healthy – something many of us, me included, are often guilty of neglecting. Exercise that strengthens your inner core muscles such as Pilates can be invaluable at helping to improve your posture and make it less likely that you injure yourself.

Finally, what do you do for?  How do you unwind? I’ve found a long swim helps to elongate tight muscles and empties the mind. It also gives me time to myself which, however busy we are, is important as it will help us stay healthy, relaxed and sane and able to continue this rewarding job that we do for a little bit longer!

How do you look after and protect yourself as a therapist?


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