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Not Feeling Good After A Massage & The Gift Certificate of Discomfort


Not Feeling Good After a Massage?

& the gift certificate of discomfort

By Harriet Clifford

  Have you ever not felt great after you’ve had a massage? Or during even? Aren’t they supposed to make you feel better? Most times, yes, says Therapist Pamela Ann. Most times. These are the keywords here.

    So don’t toss that gift card for a traditional massage just yet. Because when it comes to the muscular system there’s more to it than simple pain.

    She explains what you want is to feel is a good-kind of burning pain when a knot, adhesion, tautness, tension or even a tendon releases. And this discomforting burn-release should be about a level 4 - 6 (with level 1 being the least and 10 the most.) Anything over that is too much. And anything below is not quite enough to give the optimal kind of release that’s usually best.

    She does point out that each person’s threshold level is different. So what’s deep to one person may not be deep to another. How come? Each of us has our own sense of touch. And that’s unique, just like a snowflake. 


    And we each have our own sense of ‘touch-taste’. You could even call it our ‘touch-palette’. She explains further, that while the physical depth deeper into a muscle belly may be needed to achieve the result a client seeks, they may not like that. And that’s where the ‘dislike’ for the massage (and the therapist) can come from.

    You may wonder why the therapist just doesn’t use the pressure level that the person wants? She says here again is the ‘snowflake theory’. The craft of ‘pressure’ is a learned art. Plus the ‘heaviness’ of a therapist’s hand is what comes natural to them. Combining the two is just like a carpenter or potter, their technique in the trade is a craft learned over time with practice, and the eventual emergence of their own singular style. 

 Feedback to the therapist during the session is great, she says. This should boost the massage experience. Albeit gently put, however, if the pressure and/or discomfort isn’t to your liking. Massage and Bodywork therapists on the whole are a sensitive lot!  So don’t hesitate to give or receive that gift certificate of wellness.