Becoming a Massage Therapist ...
I was still working full-time as a Personal Assistant in the Private Mobile Industry when I decided to attend evening classes at a local college in Massage Therapy. This was way back in 2008 when my interest in the connection between the mind, body and emotions was just beginning to grow.
I also loved my Biology classes at school (largely due to an amazing enthusiastic teacher; thank you Mr. McKenna for the forever inspiration!) so having to take exams in Anatomy & Physiology as a pre-requisite to massage training just added additional fuel to my growing interest.
Hydrotherm Massage .. on a Water Bed ???
The training and experience I gained in Swedish Massage (also called Classical Massage, as it actually wasn't originally from Sweden!) led to learning Indian Head Massage and then, around 10 years and a whole stack of big life changes later, I came across Hydrotherm Massage.
I remember meeting a guy who had been diagnosed as diabetic, for which some extra care or adaption may be recommended before massage (according to many sources of advice for Massage Therapists). He said he went for regular massages on "a water bed". I had no idea what he was talking about .. massage on a water bed? "Yehh, it's really nice and warm and comfy .. and I can just lay on my back all the way through and it doesn't hurt and I don't get any bruising."
How bizarre. I investigated further .. and hey ho, yes, indeed, there it was; Hydrotherm Massage!
Described as a "world first in 3-dimensional massage," I decided to book myself in for one! First, it wasn't easy to find a Hydrotherm Massage Therapist; there were plenty of Massage Therapists around for a whole host of other types of massage, but it seemed that the Hydrotherm Therapists were fewer and farther between. I attribute this now to the fact that it is quite a financial investment to train in, and subsequently offer, as it required specialist training courses and very specialised extra equipment: water filled cushions, bolsters for lumbar support, occipital support, heat pads .. phewee! Quite a big initial financial outlay .. then the cost of specialist training, additional insurance .. but worth the investment? Oh yes, absolutely!!!
And then, as luck would have it, I discovered that my nearest Complementary Therapy Centre was owned by a Hydrotherm-Certified Massage Therapist !! Oh time, to get booked in!! I was not disappointed. It was a wonderful massage experience. Even just getting aboard the therapy couch, and reclining back on those warm, water-filled, cushions .. well, from the onset, the neck back and shoulder tension just started to melt away. Enter .. a highly skilled, experienced Hydrotherm Massage Therapist, a beautifully scented relaxing aromatherapy massage oil .. and .. can only describe as completely Divine! Watch the video at the top of this page to see how smooth and gliding the Hydrotherm massage style is.
I absolutely knew, there and then, that THIS was a Massage Therapy that I absolutely had to be able to offer.
My Additional Specialist Training in Hydrotherm Massage
Hydrotherm Massage Therapists learn how to provide a 3-Dimensional massage that is extremely smooth and gliding, and can still be tailored to use different levels of pressure depending on what the client prefers (some people prefer the lightest touch, whereas others prefer greater depth, particularly in key muscle groups such as thighs, calves, biceps, shoulders).
The unique water-filled Hydrotherm cushions are warm and usually at around 38 deg C or 98 degrees Farenheit (The Hydrotherm equipment includes a set of special heat pads and control units that help to keep the cushions at a constant temperature). Of course, some clients prefer a little extra warmth (especially on cold winter days!) or a little less (MS sufferers often prefer them a little cooler).
As with traditional massage, extra support is placed under the back of the client's knees which helps support the spine and keep the client's body feeling well balanced and well supported ( a little higher than a normal bolster).
It's amazingly comfortable and is especially suitable for people with lower back or sciatic issues; as well as for those who simply do not like to recline face-down, or who find it uncomfortable/impossible to roll over during a massage.
Hydrotherm Pregnancy Massage in Belper Derbyshire
For this massage, mum-to-be is semi-reclined on the therapy treatment couch at an angle of around 30 degrees ; so is not laying flat on her back and is not side-lying.
The angle may be increased slightly as pregnancy progresses through each Trimester.
Pregnancy can be considered an altered state of health where all the major body systems undergo considerable changes, individually and collectively, to support and nurture new life.
My aim is to provide a safe supportive environment and create a nurturing, and .stress-relieving experience.
Tranquil Sea Cancer-Support Massage
The Tranquil Sea massage is an adapted Hydrotherm Massage that takes into account any extra special requirements in case of recent surgery sites, equipment such as catheters, and also, for example, body areas where the lymph system may have been compromised due to surgery or radiotherapy.
The large majority of massage therapists are unable to carry out massage in the case of cancer support, largely due to lack of specialist training and insurance requirement.
The extra training by Hydrotherm is in-depth and extensive; it's so important that the therapist feels just as confident and comfortable with the treatment as the client.
As with Hydrotherm Massage during Pregnancy, the temperature of the underlying cushions and positioning of the headrest can be adapted to ensure the client is fully comfortable and relaxed.
Cancer Touch Therapy
I have also undertaken 3 days additional intensive training in Comfort Touch therapy (originally called Cancer Touch Therapy) by the Made for Life Foundation in Cornwall, UK, which I can also incorporate into my Tranquil Sea Hydrotherm Massages, to provide an ultimate safe and deeply relaxational massage experience to all my clients; not only those on their cancer journey, but also for others who are living with chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia and other long term painful conditions too.
So Many Options and So Many Benefits!
I could fill a whole page with reasons why I'd recommend Massage Therapy, yet there are so many different sorts of massage, each having their own philosophies and benefits, here are just a few of the most common types you might come across .. and they do vary from therapist to therapist! So no two massage therapy sessions are ever the same!
As a broad-brush summary, Massage Therapy is understood to help with:
Relieving muscle tension
Promoting better circulation
Reducing stress and anxiety
Reducing muscle pain and tension
Improving joint flexibility and mobility
Aiding in the recovery of soft tissue injuries
You are almost always encouraged to "drink plenty of water" after your massage for these reasons as it helps your body rid itself and flush away any toxins.
My Massage Therapy Services
Although I am very focused on my Health Coaching Services, which are usually on-line based and can reach clients all over the world, I still really, really love to work hands-on in my Therapy Treatment Rooms.
I currently work from 2 separate locations in Derbyshire UK (Heanor and Belper) and also have a number of clients whom I'm able to visit in their homes if they are unable to travel far.
I offer a whole range of Facials too! If you aren't sure what would be best for you, most therapists - including myself - offer a consultation prior to the first treatment. This is to gather together essential medical information prior to massage to ensure the treatment will be safe for you, and is adapted if appropriate .. and also gives you the opportunity to ask questions, and get to know your therapist a little better too! (we want you to feel as at ease and comfortable for your treatment!)
I'll also give you some After Care tips following your massage so that the benefits are maximised.
So if you want to move your health and wellbeing up to a higher level or priority in your life, a regular massage is not only restorative, but can be considered an essential bit of "preventative maintenance" too! It makes a valuable addition to any existing health and regime program for most people, and there are so many options to choose from.