Hello! I just started the HHM course, I received the pdf support – I’m reading it – and now I wait for the first module. Great informations about the work with the client.
I don’t exactly understand what mean the opt course about the oil massage for neck, but maybe is something in the course … of course I want to know the oil technique too, but I don’t know yet where can I opt for it… or when? I think it is something in the end of the course.
Module 1 :
All my clients in the begining of the session said that – I’m fine! I’m confortable in any position, I don’t need a blanket, I can stay how you want, etc… but the truth is they are not confortable in any position if they stay in that postion too much time. The tension and the pression increase in a bad position, but they continue to stay like that because they believe you will relax them with your massage, but is wrong. All the informations about the start of the session and about the pillow, the blanket, the position of the had are so valuable for all of us who are practicing massage.
I tried the first moves on the table because I’m afraid I’ll cannot do the HHM in the clinic on the mat ( like knee therapy)… I’ll use the table so I’m studying now from the begining on my massage table.
This first technique is very familiar to me because somehow I do it when I massage the back. I must to synchronise the breath with my movements and to practice more because if I’ll touch the ribs or the bone of the shoulder will be painful for the client. there is a sensitive area so I must to practice to have a heavenly move and not a painful one.
It will take a little while to make it feel really heavenly. In the beginning most students apply too much pressure. That’s something to be aware of. Heavenly Head Massage should not ever feel painful.
Working on the table works fine, no problem at all except for one technique in the entire course which cannot be done on a table. Try to put the table lower, a little over knee height, to get good leverage, and sit on a chair behind the client’s head.
Module 2 – Sternum.
First of all this is great – I had alot of clients with sternum pain who came to me to help them with my massage and… honestly – I didn’t had at that time a technique for that. I must to improvise something and, of course, I did the massage for the muscles ( pect, lat, upper pect, etc) and I ignored the sternum because I realised I don’t know really how to do a sternum massage without hurting my client. Clients with sternum pain ? OMG – who don’t have it ? Alot of people who came in my massage room after the gym or bodyworkers, or children who grew up very fast, or emotive people …
When I saw the title of the module and watched the video, all the time I was thinking : OMG, I cannot do that on my women clients because they will have a big problem with me because, accidentaly I can touch their breasts and that’s it with the relaxation :)) Your explanation about how to avoid doing that made me more confident in this technique on sternum. Thank you for that!
The synchronized breath with the client breath is not a new thing for me – I do this all the time when I do lymphatic drainage – it is a must to do that when I work on the neck or I must to press on belly. I think this will help me alot – it’s the same pressure like in lymphatic drainage – the same moves almost…
I’m going to practicing and I’ll complete later my comment here.
Amazing how a little adjustment of table height and a chair can make it easier on you! 🙂
The sternum is one of many areas which are typically neglected in most massage therapy systems, along with the sacrum, the knees, the abdomen, the glutes, and the groin area. However they are all included in my style of Thai Massage. And they can all be worked on in a professional, non-intrusive way which is appreciated by the clients.
However, it’s more comfortable for me to do this on the mat. I mean – it’s like I have a huge infant and I must to rocking it – the balance of the client come from my personal balance… so I must do it on the floor. I must to learn it on the floor and when I’ll do it in the clinic I must to adapt it for the massage table. It is more comfortable to learn the technique and to mastering it on the mat. If someone want to make all of this on the table, my advice is to learn it on the mat, and then – after s/he learn well the technique- s/he will can do it on table ( with some minuses, of course). If you work on table, just learn to keep your mat balance, to move with your entire body not only with your upper-body and to put sometimes the forearm on table ( to support the body weight without make pressure on the back ).
I love how you learn us to personalise the techniques. This is a must for every bodywork course: the technique could be more pleasant if we understand that our clients are not all the same: women with more muscular tissues, women with very little muscles, men with short or long muscles, etc.
The massage of the collarbone is a masterpiece – I didn’t dream about it until now . It is very helpfull because in the collarbone’s joints is alot of pressure, especially from a bad posture of the neck and back.
When I did the elephant walk I felt it is a massage for the therapist himself. Very pleasant.
What I must to do now: to repeat and repeat the upper-body twist… it must be very fluid and I talk not only about the technique itself, but the entire move on the mat.
You are totally correct with your observation. It is definitely an advantage to learn about body mechanics on a floor mat since you have so many more ways to use your body. Many of my students have told me that their ergonomics on the table have improved from learning Thai Massage on a mat.
Module 4 : working with the neck.
This is in fact the first module for the neck course if I can say so and for me – and I think for every massage therapist – this is very important because we have alot of clients with problem in the cervical zone.
I had many massage sessions when my client ask me to insist only on the neck because almost every people who work on the desk had neck problems or shoulder problems.
The WAVE move is a really gem. What can I say: it will took many time until I can made it properly. I was a little surprise because my feet cannot made the move and I had a some kind of pain in my anckles. I don’t know if this is ok – I mean if I need to practice more until the feet will <> the moves and they will be trained properly for that or I made it wrong somehow… in the video Shama made it so fluid and easy. I know this is because Shama had a good training in this and of course- I don’t made such a kind of move until now. The pressure in the feet go to the big toe almost and I don’t know if this is good or I must to change something.
The close ups are brilliant! I don’t see something like this in a course about the neck moves until now! If someone want – s/he can do only this last moves and s/he can done a great massage only with those four moves for the neck. All four are very pleasant for the client neck and very pleasant in auto-massage 😀 ( I tried it on myself ). The posture are very important – I know already from knee thai massage working- if some unpleasant pressure are in the spine of the therapist when he work in thai massage this is a sign that something is wrong in his posture.
There should not be pain in your ankles. Maybe you pushed your feet too far down the back, or you tried to lift too much. Make sure that you do not lift your toes. Or maybe you were sitting too far back. Then your knees are not bent enough, and this will result in ankle strain. You can try to experiment with all these variables.
It is a real challenge to keep the head of the model in the air and massage it without shake it. In my practice I know it is a challenge too to make the client to let the head in your hand without stretching his neck to maintain a safe position, but in time everything is perfected.
Shama- I saw and I practiced the neck manipulation – when the neck is lifted in the air ( without the head lifting the mat ) and I wonder if this is appropriate for a patient with spondylosis ? In my country we have many people who suffer from spondylosis and I bet I’ll have a lot of those clients for HHM because of course they have problems with neck, head, shoulders. Of course – I’m not talking about the patients in a serious condition, but the usual cervical spondylosis C5-C6 or C6–C7.
Here is the issue: Spondylosis is a term which is often used in very general ways. It does not describe a specific condition. It can refer to all kinds of spinal degeneration like osteoarthritis, degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis and other issues.
Therefore this question cannot be answered very specifically since the question is not so specific.
However in my experience HHM can almost always be used for all kinds of neck conditions. You just have to choose the right techniques and the appropriate intensity of the work.
I am working on some neck therapy material right now which has a lot more information and techniques for addressing such neck issues.
The big neck roll is very pleasant for the client and in the ending, the touching of the occipital ridge give a lot of sensations.
I had a little problem with the move of the head when I use the technique with the index finger, but this need more exercise. The hard part in the 3rd technique ( slide up neck with fingertips ) is in the end of the move, when I must to release the fingers again from the occipital ridge to the neck. More practice is needed to make this move a very flowing move.
A great sensation for the client when I rotate the head up and down from the occipital zone
You know, Shama, you are the only massage instructor I had who explain so much about the correct position for the massage therapist. This is great and of course, I’m more confident in my technique because I know every detail about it, even how to stay confortable when I do my job. I cannot thank you enough for that!
Because my sport-massage proffesor was in her beginings a thai massage instructor, I already knew the first move in this module. I use it alot for my clients when I do the neck massage but now, watching your explanations, I know I do it wrong ( not for the client ) but for myself : I do it without support myself and not the back have the big problem, but a very intense pressure in my collar bone. Now I know this aspect and support myself on the table or on the mat and I change the angle.
For this module I had a collegue who have a very very stiff and short neck, but he told me all the stretching I do with him was all he need. When I finished he move his neck in all directions very happy about the sensation.
Module 8 :
I worked the stretch of the neck with 2 partners : the first, a male with very short and inflexible neck was not very happy with it ( 8 figure stretch ) , and of course, I don’t push it, but I made the rocking move with him. But the second model – a 35 women with some problems in her cervical spine was pleased with the stretch. I’m very happy because you learned us how to proceed when we have those situations.
Half Moon technique is a very special technique. My model love it. I used a little oil for this technique – it’s winter here and their neck skin is fragile and dry.
I had a little hard mission learning the ear HHM only because my partner had the idea she will tickling if I will ever touch her ears. And she had some cold and some pain in the head, but I think the ears manipulation help her alot ( in the end she don’t have the pain so this was a nice moment after the learning session ). Of course – she was not tickling actually and all the massage was very nice.
When I massage under the lobe of the ear I was very surprised because I know there can be painful under pressure, but your move is wonderful and actually relax that part of the body- very sensytive. The same thing with the notch massage – that give a great feeling.
I do the scissors moves in the lymphatic drainage for the face.
I love the moment of meditation and the way you explain the sensations of the client. Thank you because you resume all the module in the end – it is very helpful that.
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