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My guess would be that your body mechanics are slightly off, especially if you're more sore on one side in a certain area than the other side. If you're right-handed, you might be using more strength than you need to when using the right side of your body - don't forget, with the right body mechanics, you can produce lot of pressure without using a lot of your own force. Along the same lines, since it sounds as though you favor your right side, your left side could just be sore from the fact that you're actually using it whereas you may not have been in the past.
Also, are you over-exerting yourself during the massages? Are you doing more Deep Tissue than you used to? Are you stretching yourself out before and after each massage? Have YOU been receiving Massages since you left the program? If nothing else, get yourself a TheraCane or Body Back Buddy to use on yourself, and maybe get a Thumbsaver so you don't have to exert so much force during a massage! I hope this helps somewhat...
Hi Kim, your soreness may just be from working out more. Similar to going to a gym for a workout, you get sore and then the more you "work-out" i.e. "massage" you should be less sore. If after several weeks of the same workload you are still sore, then it may be your body mechanics. For that, I recommend taping a video of yourself giving a massage, then you can see exactly what is going on. I wouldn't rely on just how you feel during the session, our minds can play tricks on us and how you think you are performing an action can be very different from how you are actually performing that action.... but a video won't lie!
Hi Kim, I remember that when I first started too. It is not one bit surprising that you would be sore going from 3 massages a weekd to 3 or 4 a day. So yes, it could be a body mechanics issue, but even if you moved perfectly you would probably still be sore. Giving a massage is a workout so you just added +3 hours a day to your workout routine. Remember to take care of yourself. Aside from the hydration which is a great tip, get massages yourself. Work out was another great tip and when you do think well rounded. Pay attention to the muscles you use the most when you work and make sure to find balance by strengthening muscles that may not be getting the workout. That will help your joints stay healthy while you build up strength. (For example shoulders was a concern for me when I first started, but I added rowing and pull downs to my workout and they recovered quickly.) And, try icing when you are done working, then soaking in an epsom salt bath later when you get a chance to relax and take care of yourself. Welcome to massage and good luck to you as you build up strength and clientelle.
all great suggestions! as a "newbie" myself I'd also suggest looking at the height of your table.
take care of yourself!
You've got a lot of very good suggestions above. Along the lines of table height, if you are doing deeper work then a shorter table will be your best friend. I'm six feet tall and when I was working off of a stationary table I had it at either the lowest or second to lowest setting. I just adjusted my body to move to the client as I needed to bending at the knees and keeping a straight back. I often thought of this as doing yoga around the massage table.
About a year ago I got a used hydraulic table and this has made life much easier. I'm doing more massages on a regular basis and my body feels much better being able to bring the client to where I need them as the session progresses. After ten years doing this I try to limit myself to no more than four hours a day. It stays true for the most part.
Good luck and congratulations on your new endeavor! In good health!