Frequently Asked Questions

How will a massage feel?

It usually depends on the technique used. Many massage therapists use a form of Swedish massage, which is often a baseline for practitioners. In a general Swedish massage, your session may start with broad, flowing strokes (effleurage) that will help calm your nervous system and relax exterior muscle tension. As your body becomes relaxed, pressure will gradually be increased to relax specific areas and relieve areas of muscular tension.

Will the massage oils used make me break-out? How long is a massage treatment?

Our massage therapists use hypoallergenic plant-based massage oils or oil-free lotions. If you have allergies to scents or sensitive skin, please bring it to the massage therapist's attention as we have an assortment of lotions on hand.

How long is a massage treatment?

The average full-body massage treatment lasts approximately one hour. A half-hour appointment only allows time for a partial massage session, such as neck and shoulders, back or legs and feet. Many people prefer a 60- to 90-minute session for optimal relaxation. Always allow a few additional minutes of relaxation time prior to and after the session.

What happens during a session?

You'll start the session by filling out some confidential paperwork, and we will discuss your goals, even if it is just to relax and de-stress. You will then be left alone in the massage room to undress to your level of comfort. You'll get on the massage table, where you will cover yourself up with a sheet or blankets. We will request entry to the room with a soft knock on the door. Your massage therapist will generally take a few minutes to send healing energy to you, and then start the actual massage. When the massage is done, the massage therapist will leave the room for you to re-dress in private.

What is a Chair Massage?

Chair massages, which often are offered in public spaces and workplaces, are an exception to the above descriptions. A specially designed massage chair lets you lean forward and supports the front of the body. This allows the massage therapist to massage most areas to be massaged. You remain clothed and no oil or lotion is used. Seated massages last from 10 to 30 minutes.

How will I feel after the massage therapy treatment?

Most people feel very relaxed, peaceful and calm. Some experience freedom from long-term aches and pains developed from tension or repetitive activity. After an initial period of feeling slowed down, people often experience increased energy, heightened awareness, and greater productivity, which can last for days. Since toxins are released from your soft tissues during a massage, it is recommended you drink plenty of water following your massage. Massage therapists sometimes recommend a hot Epsom salt bath that encourages the release of toxins that may have been stirred up from the massage treatment.

How will massage improve fertility? 

Massage can increase the circulation in the lower abdominal region to increase fertility rates and bring a greater awareness to the area. Our non-surgical massage infertility treatment addresses the adhesions that cause poor reproductive function and nearly half of all female infertility. Our female infertility treatment uses lower abdominal massage therapy to decrease adhesions and increase the function of reproductive organs and glands, without surgery or drugs. 

What should I wear to a session? 

While many people fully undress for their treatments, you should wear whatever you are comfortable in. If you prefer to receive massage through your clothing, then you might want to wear something that isn't too tight, a t-shirt and yoga pants, for example. Some people who come directly from work choose to bring a comfortable change of clothes for after the massage.You only have to undress to your level of comfort.

Do I need to disrobe?

You will be on the massage table, with sheets or blankets covering you at all times. Only the part of your body being worked on will be exposed, for example arm, leg, or back. If you are not comfortable getting undressed at all, we have techniques to use through your clothing. It is always your choice on how much clothing to take off or leave on. Your modesty will always be protected.

Is there anything I need to do to prepare for my session?

It helps to be well hydrated, so be sure to drink plenty of fluids the day before and day of your massage. If you are coming in for a facial massage, please have any make-up removed prior.

How much water should I drink? 

Eight 8-ounce glasses of water every 24 hours is recommended for massage day, and general wellness every day. 

How often should I get a massage? 

That really depends on your goals, and your budget. At the River Wellness Center, we recommend getting a massage at least once a month, as the effects are cumulative. Some clients come in once a week, most of them come in every other week, some every 3 weeks, and some once a month. All of them recognize the importance of self-care, and the health benefits that they enjoy from receiving massage on a regular basis.

What types of massage do you offer?

At the River Wellness Center our focus is on wellness, injury treatment and relaxation massage. Some of the modalities we offer are: Swedish, trigger point therapy, deep tissue, sports massage, Trager , injury treatment, relaxation, chair massage, structural integration, aromatherapy, myofascial release and craniosacral.

Will I be sore after my massage?

You will feel great. Relaxed and happy are the most common feelings after a massage. Just as you can feel sore after a good workout, you may feel a little sore after a massage, but that feeling should not last more than a day or two. It is very important for you to communicate with us. If your therapist is using too much pressure at any time please let them know. Sometimes working with an injured area might be painful, but even that should be within a good tolerance level... think "good hurt" vs. "bad hurt". Again, communication is key to getting your best massage.

Is it OK to talk during my session?

That is totally up to you. You will be asked a few questions, pertaining to your comfort level, and how you are feeling. Some people relax by talking; others prefer to have their massage in silence. It's your massage - you get to decide. Often, people will start out talking, then "drift away" as the massage goes on. Whatever helps you to relax the most is best.

What if I'm ticklish?

We work with many people who are ticklish. We can vary the pressure, depth, and pace of the massage strokes so that you won't feel tickled.

Am I supposed to tip?

Tipping is a matter of personal discretion. Tips are never required, but always appreciated. You will get the same level of excellent service whether you leave a gratuity or not. One of the best ways to "tip" is to refer your friends and family to us for treatments.

Is a massage always appropriate?

No, there are several medical conditions that would make massage inappropriate. That's why it is necessary that you fill out the health history forms and before you begin your session. The massage therapist will ask general health questions to rule out if you have any contraindications to massage. It is very important that you inform the practitioner of any health problems or medications you are taking. If you are under a doctor's care, it is strongly advised that you receive a written recommendation for massage prior to any session. Your massage therapist may require a recommendation or approval from your doctor. River Wellness Center can recommend a variety of treatments in addition to massage, like naturopathy, acupuncture, acupressure, and chiropractic therapy. If massage is not ideal for your condition, we are happy to suggest other means to get you back to feeling your best.

What to Expect at Your Massage Session:

If you haven’t had much experience with massage therapy, you might be wondering what to expect during a typical session at the River Wellness Center.

Before we start, the massage therapist will ask you to fill out a form with preliminary questions to determine your overall health. We rely on you to give accurate health information. Let the massage therapist know your expectations and desired results from the massage therapy.

The information gathered in this brief interview will help the massage therapist determine how to structure the session to achieve your goals.Don’t be afraid to discuss any apprehensions or concerns. It’s important that you be as comfortable as possible during your massage. Your massage therapist is a professional dedicated to do their best to help you feel at ease.

How we begin:

At River wellness center, our therapists will offer you a shot of elixir, an herbal infusion designed to soothe the nervous system to help you get the most from your treatment.

Before your massage, you’ll be asked to remove clothing to your level of comfort. (Exception: See Chair Massage below)
The therapist will leave the room while you undress. Remove any jewelry or other articles that might interfere with the massage. Take off only as much as you are comfortable removing. Keep in mind that your massage will be most effective when the massage therapist can touch your skin in areas they will massage. At river wellness center, we have a no-tolerance policy for inappropriate sexual behavior or harassment.

The massage table is padded, and has extra attachments and cushions, such as a face cradle, which allows you to lie facedown without turning your head or neck. In the cooler months, we heat our tables with electric table warmers for your comfort.

Before the massage therapist enters the room, you will have time to relax on the massage table underneath the provided sheet or towel. When the massage begins the therapist will uncover only the part of your body being massaged, ensuring that modesty is respected at all times.

Expect a peaceful and comfortable environment for the massage. The massage therapist will play music during the massage. Some people enjoy the music, and some don’t. If you prefer silence or different music, ask the massage therapist to turn off or change the music. Some people like to talk during a massage, while others remain silent. Tell your massage therapist what you prefer.

The practice:

The massage technique or modality used will depend on what the therapist determines is best for your needs. A typical table massage session is usually a minimum of 30 minutes and a maximum of 90 minutes.

At River wellness center, we use natural plant based oil or lotion, which reduces friction on the skin while performing the massage strokes. If you are allergic to scents, oils or lotions, let your massage therapist know before your massage begins so we can choose an appropriate alternative.

Depending on your needs, the massage therapist will massage either the full body (except for private areas) or only specific areas that need attention, such as especially tight muscles. Remember to breathe normally. People often stop or limit their breathing when they feel anxious or a sensitive area is massaged. Breathing helps facilitate relaxation.

Relax your muscles and your mind. Tightening up by contracting or hardening your muscles during the massage is counterproductive. Let your massage therapist know this is happening. They may need to adjust the massage technique they use and may also be able to help you relax the affected area. If you find your thoughts are racing during the massage, one way to be more body-centered and to quiet your mind is to follow the hands of the massage therapist and focus on how the touch feels. Or count sheep.

Make yourself comfortable. If your therapist wants you to adjust your position, she or he will either move you or will ask you to move what is needed. Otherwise, change your position anytime to make yourself more comfortable. Many people close their eyes and relax completely during a session; others prefer to talk. It's up to you. It is your massage, and whatever feels natural to you is the best way to relax. Do not hesitate to ask questions at any time.

During the massage session, report any discomfort, whether it’s from the massage or due to any problems or distractions related to the environment, e.g., room temperature, music volume, lighting, etc. Give feedback to the massage therapist during the massage on the amount of pressure, speed of hand movement, etc. If anything happens that you dislike or makes you feel uncomfortable, you have the right to ask the massage therapist to stop. If necessary, you also have the right to end the session.

At the end of the massage, the massage therapist will allow you to slowly get up and get dressed in privacy. Leave the room when you are dressed.