Everyone can benefit from a massage; whether therapeutic or relaxing in nature and men are no exception. Gone are the days in thinking that massage is strictly for women who need a “spa day” .
Luckily through education, word of mouth and more often than not, through encouragement from a female partner or friend, men are quickly realizing what they have been missing. The therapeutic benefits of massage in addressing health concerns, mobility and stress levels is undisputable
Ellen Hamilton, owner and lead Massage Therapist with Signature Massage in Lee’s Summit, states her practice has recently seen a surge in male clients with the addition of sports massage and cupping to her massage practice.
Golfers and runners were the first to gravitate to her customized therapeutic protocols she developed for her male clientele. Word has spread and now her client base includes young athletes at the high school, Division 1 and 2 collegiate levels, a few retired professional athletes as well as the “weekend warriors,”, she stated. She is very quick to add however, “You don’t have to be a professional athlete to reap the wonderful benefits regular massage can achieve for your body.”
Sports massage provided the perfect avenue for men to quickly see and achieve the numerous benefits of a therapeutic massage in often times just one session she said. Hamilton has the client stay fully clothed throughout the massage as they become accustomed to her therapeutic touch which generally involves PNF (Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation stretching techniques (PNF) designed to increase range of motion and mobility that one cannot achieve by themselves.
After Hamilton is done with one side of the body, she has them stand up and walk around so they can actually feel the difference between their right and left side and how their body has responded to the treatment in just 20 minutes. Many times, she stated, her clients are amazed at how loose and light they feel and they have often stated they have never felt that way before.
“I have one man who comes in monthly who tells me he keeps coming back because after a treatment he feels 10 years younger when he gets off the table; because he can actually move with ease”
After the PNF stretching and a level of trust has been achieved, Hamilton said, it’s easier to move her male clients into doing a therapeutic upper body massage which involves a lot of neck, shoulder and back work. Hamilton always works within the comfort level of her clients whether that means using deep tissue techniques that may involve cupping or trigger point therapy, or a more relaxing massage that can be therapeutic in nature as well. Her treatments always involve a little hot stone work and concludes with a hot towel treatment.
Ellen Hamilton wants all her clients to feel comfortable before, during and after their massage. Her website (www.signaturemassagekcmo.com) is very informative and has a section specifically addressing “What to Expect” which generally answers most questions people have about massage. Hamilton’s clientele now includes 35-40% men and her treatment protocols are inclusive for both men and women.