I get a few people who come to me for a different therapy because they feel body conscious. They know a massage is probably going to help them the best, but they’re not ready to get stripped off in front of a stranger and flaunt it all.
Here’s the thing – You don’t have to.
It’s ok to come for a different therapy, check if you have the right therapist for you and then change when you’re feeling more confident. It’s also OK to book a massage and be honest about how you’re feeling, either with yourself and/or with the therapist. We’re here to support you and if we can reduce your stress before you’ve arrived, that’s a good thing.
If you choose a massage, when you arrive we have a chat about what you want to achieve during the session. Most therapists will leave the room while you change, or will shield you with a towel if they’re staying in the room. As soon as you’re undressed you can put a towel over yourself so you don’t feel exposed. If you’re a lady and want to leave your bra on, that’s fine. We can unclip it when you’re led down on the couch.
But what about the massage itself?
As therapists we see all body sizes, conditions, and issues. Personally, I’m not a size 8 so I don’t think I’m in any position to pass judgement on another body. When I drape back the towel I’m looking at your body to see how your spine curves, where your muscles are visibly tight and checking for any issues that you may not be aware of, like lumps or moles.
Each of us is unique and we may be a larger or a petite frame, but it’s what is making you you, & that is OK. It is an unusual arrangement to book an appointment with a stranger and then to get undressed around them. For those who aren’t used to massage this can be an anxious time, as you’ll be wondering what the person is like and what to expect, and this can be made worse if you’re body conscious.
If the idea of getting undressed in front of someone is making you feel anxious, remember, the massage therapist will be used to all types of bodies. Even massage therapists will be aware of their own imperfections. It is what makes each of us unique and should be celebrated rather than worried about.