For new massage therapists, there are several specific skills that will take some time to master. Even after you've graduated from a massage therapy program that has included plenty of hands-on instruction, you'll need to figure out what works in the real world. One area to think about is the amount of massage lotion that you're using on your clients. Although you'll sometimes encounter clients who specifically request for you to use a large or a small amount, you'll generally want to use a moderate degree of lotion. Here are some signs that you perhaps aren't using the right amount.
Your Hands Keep Slipping
One way to tell that you've applied too much massage lotion is that your hands and fingers are constantly slipping forward when you apply pressure. This can leave the client with a massage that is less than satisfactory, as you may be unable to apply the amount of pressure that you want. The solution to this issue is simple. Depending on the body part that you're treating, you may wish to move some of the lotion around. For example, on the back, if there's too much lotion in one specific area, you can slide your lotion-covered hands to a different spot to even things out.
Your Hands Are Sticking
The opposite of your hands slipping because of too much massage lotion is that your hands and fingers are sticking to the client's skin. This indicates that you haven't applied enough lotion. For example, if you're kneading the client's hamstrings and your hands are not sliding enough, you'll want to add more lotion. Watch for this issue in certain areas that have lots of body hair; the hair can absorb some of the lotion that you initially apply, resulting in an area that isn't lubricated enough.
The Client Gives You An Indicator
Sometimes, what might seem like a lot of lotion or a small amount of lotion to you may not be an opinion that the client shares. Certain massage clients like a lot of lotion, while others like a smaller amount. In many cases, clients will verbally indicate this to you, but there may also be subtle signs that you can pick up. If your hands are sticking because of a shortage of lotion, this can be uncomfortable — and the client may tense his or her muscles as a result. Similarly, if you're using too much lotion to suit the client, he or she may not seem to be relaxing deeply because your massage isn't very deep. In this case, you can ask the client if he or she would prefer you to remove some of the lotion.
For more information, contact a business such as Massage & Medical Supply Depot.