The prevailing notion among massage therapists is that a lot of talking during a massage session is not a good idea and should be avoided and discouraged. I have compiled a number of scenarios where this idea does not apply.
There is a much more sophisticated way to determine how much conversation is appropriate between massage therapists and clients. Hint: there are situations where a lot of talking is very effective and even necessary. To find out what they are, check out this article:
Please chime in with your comments, ideas and experience. We all love to hear from you.
Good Day Shama,
In my practice it is very individualized. I have some clients that need to unwind by talking. I find that the more time that I spend with them and have them focus on what is going on that they eventually start to quiet either within or during additional sessions. My approach is more of a client awareness centered approach, identifying what the mind is doing in the moment and what bodily/energetic sensations that come as a result of the time together. This then translate to more healing outside of the session and relates to the more practical experience of day to day life outside of the treatment room. You can probably tell my heavy Buddhist influence without influence there.
When I am approaching it from a more clinical aspect, communication is very important during the session.
Michael P. Barnes LMBT 8913, RMT
Its a good question. In general I agree with Michael. Communication is important, but it doesnt always mean verbal communication. More important is to "feel" each other, that means use more right brain, intuitive aspect of ourselves. when we engage in chat, we rather go to the left brain. That means less feeling... I think even if we dont talk, we still can be too much thinking and analyzing in our brain, witch disturb the flow of the treatment. I used to joke in my courses: "when the client starts to talk, it means I press not hard enough!" 🙂
Yes, I definitely agree with you, communication can be verbal or non verbal. I often communicate silently with clients by sending them mental messages. Often I get a strong feeling, like a knowing, about something concerning the client, and generally I am spot on. This is something that I developed even more in my Heavenly Head Massage course which is part body work and part energy work.
Some clients like to chat, and it is often possible to steer the conversation into something that helps their healing process. If we as therapists keep our energy high, focused and clean, even chatting can become part of the therapy.
Another technique that I use with chatty clients is that I might be externally chatting with them, but internally and silently I talk to them about something totally different. I consciously send them healing, relaxing energy and often talk to the organ or muscle or energy blockage in that way, asking it to relax and heal. You can also use visualizations that way. This is a method to combine the physical elements of body work with energy work.