Guest blog: why passionate therapists are the key to a good massage

Aromatherapy Associates

Christina Salcedas, head of education for Aromatherapy Associates, explores how massage treatments have evolved and why more money needs to be spent on therapists to ensure they produce this quality service time and time again.

As a wellness professional, I do my utmost to practice what I preach and the one thing I most look forward to is my monthly massage at my local urban spa.

On my last visit, I was told my usual therapist wasn’t available and I would be having someone new, which I’m sure most of you massage enthusiasts will empathise with.

It’s just not what you want to hear when you’ve been dreaming all day about that one stretch your therapist does that makes her leg massage much better than anyone else’s.

Nevertheless, at the end of the treatment, I was pleasantly surprised. The new therapist was fantastic and took every known step possible for the making of a phenomenal treatment. So, what made it so special?

Expectations were set and met

Firstly, her consultation was quick and to the point; confirming I had no other health problems that weren’t mentioned on the questionnaire. She asked what I wanted to achieve from the treatment and the pressure I preferred, then talked me through what she was going to do as well as how she wanted me to get ready – meaning both her and I knew what the expectations of this treatment were in five minutes.

The room was perfect – clean, warm, dimly lit and smelt lovely – and the first thing she did when she re-entered was wash her hands. She then began to bolster my ankles up, align me to the bed, ensure the towels were completely covering me and cleansed my feet, and only then did she confirm if I was comfortable and told me that if at any point the temperature, music or massage pressure wasn’t right to let her know.

Skills and environment were first-class

What followed was a good massage, technically not out of this world but therapeutically great. On completion, she gave me time to come around on my own and proceeded to give me some tips on how to stretch out my calf muscles, as well as a recommendation of a product to use at home until my next massage.

The above is no secret to the industry, it isn’t anything special, but it highlights the fact that, as an industry, we need to spend more time and money on our therapists, ensuring they are producing this kind of service time and time again. A customer doesn’t go back to a sauna, pool or spa café but they will return to the therapist.

Investing in therapists learning is crucial

It is for this reason that Aromatherapy Associates decided to work alongside the London College of Beauty Therapy (LCBT) to launch passionate, all-rounded therapists into the industry. We not only teach our core treatment at the college but also support our spa partners with hiring newly qualified therapists.

In addition, our new collection of Wellbeing Treatments was created with, not just the spa guests’ wellbeing in mind, but also that of our therapists, enabling them to have affirmations and practices during the treatment making it that more mindful – with purpose and intent.

So, the new therapist may not have done that daydream stretch but she did everything else and genuinely wanted to make me feel better than when I walked in, so you won’t be surprised to know I’m booked in with her next month.

Christina Salcedas Christina Salcedas is head of education for professional skincare brand Aromatherapy Associates.

Image: ©Aromatherapy Associates