What Is Massage Therapy?
The purpose of massage therapy is to prevent, develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical function or relieve pain (Massage Therapy Act, 1991).
Massage Therapy is recognized as one of the oldest methods of healing, with references in medical texts nearly 4,000 years old. It is a widely accepted and effective treatment for reducing stress, decreasing muscle pain and stiffness, and for aiding in rehabilitation and postural realignment.
Massage therapists use a variety of techniques that, along with prescribed client self-care, help to facilitate improved health and well-being.
Kathleen was trained in Ontario, where it is mandatory to have 2200 hours of training. She then had to pass a written and practical examination before being allowed to call herself a massage therapist. As a Registered Massage Therapist there for 12 years, she is well-versed in how to safely treat a wide variety of pathologies. In Alberta, there is no governing body to ensure proper training of massage therapists. Kathleen is happy to be able to provide residents of St. Albert and surrounding area with massage therapy that is both safe and effective.
Fertility massage consists of several massage techniques: a series of deep-tissue strokes, myofascial release, reflexology points and lymphatic drainage on points specific to the reproductive organs. This can allow the reproductive organs to gain improved circulation which brings them fresh oxygenated blood and nutrients.
Scar tissue is relaxed and this may allow any blockages of the fallopian tubes to be cleared. This protocol also addresses stomach, liver and intestinal health to help clear any blockages, may help bring about ideal uterine position and thus help to achieve hormonal balance. Kathleen also uses Craniosacral Therapy techniques to help ease fascial restrictions in the abdominal area.
The goal behind fertility massage is to get the entire body relaxed. Stress has been shown to affect some people’s ability to become pregnant, so this treatment is aimed at helping clients relax and allow their body to function in as healthy a state as possible.
In no way is fertility massage a guarantee of increasing fertility. It is meant to be used as an aid to natural and medical fertility methods.
If you are undergoing IVF treatments, there are times when massage is contraindicated (not a good thing to do). Please consult with Kathleen ahead of your appointment as to proper timing of your massages.
Benefits of Massage Throughout all Trimesters:
- Decreases pain
- Decreases swelling in limbs
- Increases circulation
- Provides your developing baby with stimulating and nurturing input
- Assists in fetal development by supporting the body’s circulation, bringing more oxygen and nutrients to the fetus and removing waste products.
- Encourages a healthy labour, eases muscle tension, increases hip flexibility
- Increases endorphins and serotonin, promoting hormone balance, relaxation and a sense of well-being for mother and baby.
During a Prenatal Massage Therapy session, the expecting mother’s comfort is the foremost priority. Additional bolstering, blankets, and heat pads may be used to ensure that the client is able to relax and find comfort on the massage table. Usually this means laying on one side or the other, but often a mother will be able to find comfort on either her stomach or her back, with the use of a body cushion system, which Kathleen has to help ensure maximum comfort for the expectant mother.
What Happens During a Massage Therapy Session?
Do I Need To Undress For My Massage?
You are encouraged to undress to your level of comfort. It is much more beneficial to apply massage techniques directly to the skin and massage therapists are required to drape you with a sheet so that they only expose the portion of your body on which they are working. It is quite possible to work on a client who is partially/ fully dressed; although this will limit the type of techniques the therapist can use. Your choices will always be respected & you will never be made to feel uncomfortable.
What if the pressure of the massage is too much/not enough? What if I am uncomfortable and want to stop the massage? At any time during the massage, you are encouraged to give feedback as to pressure, or any other questions or concerns you have. It is false to think “no pain no gain” is the way to go in a massage. If you are feeling pain beyond what is comfortable, chances are the massage is too deep and is actually causing muscle damage. This will make things worse instead of better! Please let your therapist know how the pressure is. Some areas are more sensitive than others. Massage therapists can only feel how tight the muscles are, not how they feel to you, so it is important to communicate this.
If you ever want to stop the massage for any reason whatsoever, please say so! This is your massage and your time so if you are uncomfortable with anything you are encouraged to ask that the session stop. The therapist will leave the room so that you can get dressed and then if you wish to discuss things, you can do so at your discretion, fully clothed.
What Can You Expect From Your First Massage Therapy Visit?
I ask that you arrive 10-15mins early on your first visit. You will be required to fill out a confidential health history form, which will help me in creating your assessment and treatment plan. I will then explain the massage process and answer any questions you may have about your condition or reason for seeking massage therapy. Remember that your first visit will include the assessment in your treatment time.