When should I not get a massage?

I normally say that a massage is a cure to every single ailment that we have as humans... I may be bending the truth there, but if you are stressed, get a massage, if you are suffering headaches, get a massage, if you have a bad back, you guessed it massage.


However, there are certainly times where a massage will not be beneficial or worse will actually cause you further harm.

In this blog, I want to talk about those times and why here at PJ Fitness & Massage we ask for your health information before a massage.


The most obvious ones that many people forget to tell a therapist are:

  • A cold or fever

  • Recently involved in an accident or have been injured

  • Dizziness or nausea

  • Bruising, wounds, rash or sunburn

Whilst I am sure as you read this the above list is of no surprise, you will be shocked that many clients still attend an appointment with the above issues.


I think I should also add "recent contact with a covid positive person" to the list.


As a coach and therapist in the wellness world, it is my obligation to ensure that everyone that I work with leaves me a little bit better than when they stepped in through the doors.

For this reason, it is essential that I know why my client is visiting, and even more so important that my client is honest with their past medical conditions and any current ones.


Upon your first visit, and at regular intervals to see me, I will ask you to complete a form that will ascertain your medical history. I may also ask questions during a massage. This is all done to ensure that you are safe to work with and that I will not harm you.


So I bet you are wondering what can cause an issue?


If you have been to see a GP lately about a problem it may be relevant and may actually prevent me from working on you safely. Let's talk about contraindications first.


Total Contraindication


There is a thing called contraindication. Contraindication is a condition that serves as a reason not to take certain treatments such as sports or remedial massage, or indeed any other massage, due to the harm that it could cause the customer.


For example, a recent heart attack patient would be contraindicated for a sports massage for a variety of reasons, one being that due to blood-thinning medication you would very likely bruise too easily with a deep tissue massage, and many sports massage techniques.

Blood pressure can also change during a massage, as blood is circulated to the heart, there is potential for blood pressure changes to cause a heart attack.


Some therapists can still work on clients after consent from their GP, so it doesn't always mean no but it is always best that you are honest with your therapist!


Local Contraindications


A local contraindication is a type of contraindication that is limited to the area that the issue is. For example, you may have a big cut on your leg that is healing, and the therapist will have to avoid that area.


There is such a large list of things that are on one of the above lists that instead of listing each one I will share a picture below!


So the whole point of this blog was to highlight when you need to mention to your therapist that you may have a condition or ailment that they need to be aware of! They will then adjust the massage accordingly, or advise you to come back at a later date, or see a GP first.



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