What can you expect from a Soft Tissue Therapy appointment?
Updated: Oct 28
Recently I've been asked a few times 'exactly what is Soft Tissue Therapy? What is it you do?', so I thought I'd explain a little more around what my level 5 BTEC qualification actually means in terms of your treatment.
So, what can you expect from an appointment with me?
Your appointment and your massage is always completely tailored to you. No two massages will ever be exactly the same. I aim to give you just what you need at the time of your appointment, after all I am led by what you'd like to get out of the session to make sure your needs are best met.
This may include:
Assessments to see how you're moving, for pain and restrictions that you're experiencing
Hands on treatment such as myofascial release, deep tissue massage, gentle relaxing massage, sports style massage, advanced techniques, stretching and mobilisations, or any other techniques I use that could be most effective for you
Advice on stretches, exercises or lifestyle tweaks to do at home to help build on what we've achieved in the session, and to give you tools to use to help prevent, manage and improve pain
At the start of your appointment I will do a consultation with you. This is essentially a chat about medical history, your pain, stresses, lifestyle questions etc which allows me to:
A) ensure I am working safely, that there's no medical reason why you shouldn't have massage today, and to spot if there's any reason why I should refer you to a more qualified professional regarding your condition such as a GP who can do further tests if needed. This is an especially important area of my practice as not all pain is muscular and therefore to help you get on top of your pain you may need to be seen by other professionals too.
B) My treatments are all clinically reasoned and this allows me to tailor your treatment to meet your needs - if I don't ask you these questions I can't possibly give you the best massage I can! I never ever do a 'routine'.
C) I will make some notes which will really help with continuity of treatment for the next time I see you, making sure you're getting the best continuing value from your sessions. It can also help you to spot patterns for pain conditions, for example because I note when my clients have had a migraine, it is easy to look back at their history and see their frequency which has helped them when discussing their migraines with their GP and managing their condition.
D) I will also use this to begin to tailor the advice I give you for home care - this means things you can do at home between your appointments for Soft Tissue Therapy, such as specific stretches or strengthening exercises, relaxation techniques, lifestyle changes etc. These are the tools you can use at home every day to help you build on your treatments; prevent, manage and improve your pain.
What happens next?
Once we have done your consultation it may be applicable to do some assessments, which I'll discuss with you and explain why I think they may be useful.
Assessments can be useful to help me to see where you are at right now and give me clues as to what may be going on. They also give us a starting point, so that we can see if there is any change after your treatment, improved range of movement and reduced pain. By doing assessments we can also see how your pain and mobility change over time.
Assessments are based on me looking at your movements and seeing if you have any pain, restriction or adapted movement, then looking at what we can do to try and help you reduce pain, improve range of movement and improve quality of movement, so that you can carry on using your body to do the things that are important to you. It helps give me a tailored approach to your treatment so that you're getting the best value from your appointment.
Then It's Time For Treatment
Treatment is always completely tailored to you based on what we have discussed in the consultation and what we've identified in assessments.
Your treatment is likely to include a range of techniques from the wide variety I use, including:
Gentle massage techniques
Deep tissue massage
Sports style massage
Remedial style massage
Advanced techniques including METs, PIR/RI, trigger point, mobilisations etc
The aim of treatment is always down to you. Sometimes you may have a specific focus such as lower back pain, other times you may be feeling really stressed and need to relax. This is why I say I always tailor the treatment to you, giving you just what you need.
I can also absolutely do a really lovely, deeply relaxing, nourishing massage - the kind that makes you feel like you're floating out the door - if that’s what you’d like. This is why the consultation at the start of your appointment is so useful as it helps me tailor your massage to exactly what you'd like to achieve.
Tools to take home...
A huge part of the value from a Soft Tissue Therapy session is the tools I will give you to take home.
This means that you have tools that you can draw on to help yourself inbetween appointments, so that you can manage and improve your pain and mobility when you need it, putting the power in your hands. It also means that we can build on each massage session, rather than just coming for a massage every so often and never really getting anywhere, it gives us a structure and a plan.
Examples of these tools may include:
Stretches or strengthening exercises that target your pain / mobility
Relaxation or breathing techniques to help with stress levels
Lifestyle tools such as water, nutrition, sleep, focusing on what brings you joy
I am also able to design 12 week plans to help you build gradually over 12 weeks, improving strength and mobility, getting your body back to being able to do what you want to do with it.
A little bit from me...
It is my passion to help people to understand, manage and improve their pain, mobility and stress.
You may simply need a massage to de-stress. You may have an acute injury with a very clear cause. Or perhaps you have a chronic/persistent issue that you’ve had for years and not really found a long lasting way to manage it.
I firmly believe that Soft Tissue Therapy can help people with rehabilitation from illness or injury, to create a strong body capable of doing what you want to do with it and to relax and de-stress on a deep level, by working together in a way that works for you.
No two clients are ever the same and this is a really important understanding when working with pain as treatments, home care and ongoing plans will always be tailored to you.
I’d love to welcome you to the clinic and help you feel better - now is the time to get in touch and see how I can help you.