How do I become more confident in my massage?

A place for students to post their questions and concerns.

Moderator: squash_blsm

Post Reply
HarmonyFl2013
Fresh Hands
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Nov 16, 2013 11:50 am

How do I become more confident in my massage?

Post by HarmonyFl2013 » Sat Dec 07, 2013 3:24 pm

I have been told in many of my feedback forms from school clinic that I lack confidence in my massage. However, I don't feel that way when giving a massage. Is there any tips that I can try to improve my confidence?

Feeling really bummed out :?: :?:

Jonathan
Registered Member
Posts: 90
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2005 3:59 pm
Location: california

Re: How do I become more confident in my massage?

Post by Jonathan » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:49 am

That could be one of the "standard constructive criticisms" that "clinic clients" give out ya know? I've been certified since 2003 and can tell you that confidence will come. On the other hand I still get a little anxious with each new client wanting them to think I'm as good as I think I am. (at least 'til I get lost in the massage)
live & let live

User avatar
pueppi
Registered Member
Posts: 5887
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2005 6:01 am
Location: Texas / The Lone Star State

Re: How do I become more confident in my massage?

Post by pueppi » Sun Dec 08, 2013 3:54 pm

Read your question and will get back here in this evening or in the next few days to brainstorm some thoughts. Keep your chin up, and welcome to the forums! Please post often and feel free to bump up old threads! :)
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, leading to the most amazing view. May your rivers flow without end, meandering through valleys tinkling with bells...
Houston Massage Therapy - Advanced Massage Therapy - Lucas & Lucas, LLC

User avatar
pueppi
Registered Member
Posts: 5887
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2005 6:01 am
Location: Texas / The Lone Star State

Re: How do I become more confident in my massage?

Post by pueppi » Mon Dec 09, 2013 9:27 am

HarmonyFl2013 wrote:I have been told in many of my feedback forms from school clinic that I lack confidence in my massage. However, I don't feel that way when giving a massage. Is there any tips that I can try to improve my confidence?

Feeling really bummed out :?: :?:

OK, I was thinking about this while I worked yesterday and into the evening. I don't have much, but maybe a few ideas that will help.

Here's a plus: you feel confident when you give massage! That's going to be helpful! And, we know you've got gumption, because you came here to ask people to help.

In your specific case, I would like to get more specific feedback if I were you. What you may be able to do is ask your clinic instructor if they can arrange a meeting with one (or some) of the people who are rating you as "lacking confidence" so that you can get more in depth response as to what it is that doesn't feel confident. Or, maybe they can arrange for that person to write a longer note and leave it at the clinic or mail it in to you (if they don't want to meet face to face).

Questions like:
  • Is it because your draping skills are lacking? Maybe your massage is good but the draping is bad. If they didn't clarify, you'd never know.
  • Is it because your touch is too weak / too feathery / to namby-pamby? Maybe the client likes a light touch, but not "fish hands" that aren't knowledgable in their work.
  • Is it because your touch is too choppy / to strong / too rough? Maybe they like deeper work, but want the work to flow better and work in a fashion that feels like there is a method of application that has reason as to where the work is going next.
  • Is it because you are working too fast? That was one of my big problems starting out. Enjoy this post. At the bottom of that post are some pretty good links for new therapists, too.
  • Is it because you say "uhm" or are unsteady in your speech when you talk to the client? If so, then that would have nothing to do with the actual massage. If you weren't told the was the actual problem, you'd be chasing the wrong issue.
If your instructor will help you take the time to find out the particulars, you may find it is one little thing that is happening over and over again and is relatively easy to fix.

I'd also want to know if that is a check box that people are checking on the school paperwork ("lack of confidence"), or if it is a phrase they are told to write if they don't like some aspect of the massage. Just how are so many people coming up with the same phrase?

If you happen to know what the school paperwork looks like and can re-create it here, that may also help us come up with other ways to figure out where the problem is... or isn't.


Since you are still in school, you likely don't have the same years under your belt as a therapist who has been in business for many years. It would be really beneficial if you could find some MT's who are not part of the school and set up appointments with them.

It's quite difficult for us to know how our hands feel on someone else. So, another thing I suggest is to experience other therapists work and learn from that.

I had a student call me a few years ago who wanted to experience my work. I would be happy to try and help a student in clinic or a new therapist, if they wanted to work with someone and we could figure out a beneficial time frame. I figure there are probably a few other MT's floating around who feel the same. Maybe you can just call a few sole practitioner MT's in your area who have been in practice for 5 or more years and ask if they would be willing to do a trade with you, so that you could experience their work and get real response from them as to what you can work on. You may even find one from this forum.

Some changes, of course, just take time after working on many bodies. But, some can be corrected quickly if you have someon who is honest and wants to take the time to help you out.

I look forward to hearing from you soon and learing what has transpired. :)
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, leading to the most amazing view. May your rivers flow without end, meandering through valleys tinkling with bells...
Houston Massage Therapy - Advanced Massage Therapy - Lucas & Lucas, LLC

truepeacenik
Registered Member
Posts: 101
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 11:18 pm
Contact:

Re: How do I become more confident in my massage?

Post by truepeacenik » Thu Dec 12, 2013 11:34 am

I would get "all over the place" as criticism, with no constructive behind it.
More than a thousand massages later (hey, I'm part time), I can tell you I hear comments like "you feel very connected and sure" or "you have a comforting touch."
And I have my clientele, not just clients.
And my school didn't have clinic. It was up to us to find bodies.

So, once your hands are down, commit to the dance. Need to think? Use effleurage.
Slow is better than fast. But that isn't equivalent to inefficient.
Have a standard routine to start. Know that for general relaxation, without specific areas of concern, you will include x, y, and z. Keep on your time. It's ok to think 15-15-15-15 for an hour session.
I know I use less time in areas, and I can reallocate time on the fly. You will learn to do this too.

Get some fellow students together and be each other's feedback. Ask for honesty.

User avatar
MTSI
Fresh Hands
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:19 pm
Location: Texas
Contact:

Re: How do I become more confident in my massage?

Post by MTSI » Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:48 pm

tenure and experience will help over time. the more massages you do the more in tune you become with the body which reflects in confidence. that said, this profession is one where we are continuously improving and learning over time. take it as constructive feedback and use it to continue improving personally and professionally
http://www.massagetherapyschoolsinformation.com/
THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE RESOURCE FOR A SUCCESSFUL CAREER IN MASSAGE THERAPY

Post Reply

Return to “Student Forum”