In order to give a great massage, it's imperative to help your clients relax as soon as possible. I've found that over the years of my practice, these techniques done in a certain order are very efficient and extremely effective in getting your massage clients to relax fast. Helping to guide your clients into relaxation quickly will enhance their massage experience and make your job much easier in the long run. If you perfect these techniques, your massage clients will know that when they come to you, they can count on you to take them away and to a better place fast! There are a few key points you want to implement and you'll find that if you do them in this order, things will run very smoothly and get you the results much quicker than if you don't.

1. Put them in the comfort zone. Whether your client is a first timer or a regular, always greet them and ask them what are their specific needs today. Do they need pain relief, to relax or a little of both? Tell them that you are going to give them a great massage or that you're going to take great care of them. Confidence helps to put clients at ease because you are telling them that their needs are going to be taken care of so they can stop worrying about it.

2. After you've discovered their treatment needs, ask them how much time they'd like for you to spend on those areas and then do it. In fact, work on those areas first so they know they've been taken care of. Working on the areas of interest first puts them in relaxation mode fast because they don't have to wonder or worry about when you're going to get to it. I can't tell you how many clients have complained to me about other therapist just doing a routine. Every massage client is unique and so should be their treatment.

3. Use visual words/cues to help them relax. I personally never ask my clients to "Relax". Asking someone on your massage table to relax can come across as a little condescending. Instead, I prefer to use words they can see. When I'm moving an arm or a leg around, sometimes they have trouble letting me. They want to help or they may be unaware of the holding pattern. When they are holding something tight, I will ask them to let that area to be soft. If that doesn't work, I'll gently shake it out, and this time I'll ask them to be soft and fluid. This usually works but if they need a little extra help, I'll throw in some humor. You can say something like "Hey you're on vacation, let me do all the work!" or "I appreciate the help but you're on break right now!" Come up with your own line but be careful not to insult your client while they're on the massage table. Sometimes a little light and tasteful humor is all that's needed to help your clients to laugh and let go!

Remember that your clients are coming to you for assistance with pain or stress and its our job as massage therapists to guide them and get them where they need to go. Try practicing all these techniques in this order and you should find your massage practice to be more enjoyable for you and your clients.

Author's Bio: 

Lea Johnson has been a practicing licensed massage therapist for almost two decades. She is now thrilled to share her no-nonsense advice to other licensed massage practitioners to help them find their own way into their practice or improve the one they have.