Get a Head

Here is a situation, which every massage therapist is very familiar with: a new client completes a medical questionnaire showing that he/she is in perfect health, no medical conditions, no injuries, surgeries, etc. And then you start asking direct questions, and suddenly hear: “Oh yeah, I had my ACL torn 2 years ago in a skiing accident”, or “I forgot to mention that I was rear-ended last year, and had a whiplash”, and on and on.

It is my belief that clients often fail to adequately describe their health conditions for one of three reasons:

a. they are ashamed of some life choices they’ve made in the past

b. they think that the condition they have is beyond the massage therapist’s scope of practice, or

c. because they just want to get the irritating paper work out of the way and to finally climb on that massage table.

One such condition, which clients never seem to bring up until I ask, is the headache (some others are constipation and insomnia, and I’ll cover them in the future blog posts). So I always ask clients if they get headaches, and if they do, I also probe further to see if they have a pain in the jaw, ringing in the ears, or other symptoms.

You see, the reasons for headaches are many, and we, as massage therapists, may not always find an underlying cause, let alone be able to treat it, but we are well trained to reduce the symptoms and provide a relief.

So, dear clients, present and future, if you are reading this, please remember to bring up your headache condition next time we have our pre-massage talk. The photo above shows how they used to treat headaches 150 years ago, and I’ve heard that some of our competitors in the wellness business are still doing it this way, but not us.

When you let me know that you get headaches, I will make modifications to the massage routine and include some simple treatments around your eyebrows, temples and the back of your head, which you can later do at home by yourself to feel better. Book online at, or call the Breathe Spa at 403-457-3060 and make an appointment with me for a therapeutic or a relaxation massage.

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