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I recently received a massage in Avon Park, FL where the LMT did not use a Bolster. In school we were taught to never go without one. He told me that a Bolster was a blockage to the flow of the massage. What are your thoughts and experience with or without a Bolster?

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I use or don't use bolsters depending on the massage and the client. When doing Lymphatic Massage I do not use a bolster unless it creates pressure on the low back. People with low back pain I use bolsters for all massages to lift the knees from underneath and take pressure off the low back area. Doing mat techniques I do not usually use a bolster. Doing acupressure on the legs I remove the bolster while working on the legs.

I do not think any rule should dictate in every situation. Flexibility is my rule to meet the clients need.
I don't use bolsters; I use pillows to prop my clients. Reasoning: how many of your clients have bolsters at home? Using pillows, I can show them how to properly position themselves at home. Each client is different and each therapist is different. To each their own! Do what feels right for you and your clients, Darcy.
i use pillows as well. i feel they are much softer propping up legs than the bolsters that we are accustomed to through school.

however, i actually don't like any propping for myself. go figure.
You know my feelings here. No bolsters as they are presently designed. A pillow is perfect for comfort, support and natural curvature.
They make half bolsters and I've never had a problem with them under my client's ankles,or knees. For the lower back, I sometimes roll up a towel and slide under.

I have a hard time swallowing the whole "Bolster was a blockage to the flow of the massage" line.
I use pillows in my massage room here. At Massage Envy we use bolsters. I had never heard anything before of not using some kind of support to the knees and ankles. The thought of a bolster being a blockage to the flow of massage was new to me as well.

I hardly ever use (no bolsters or pillows) them unless a person asks for them or I know they have severe back pain.   I think they are a pain to use and clean and move around that's all.  Oh I guess I use a pillow for sidelying work but that is about it.

Why would you never go without one?  That just seems odd.  I am not sure how they would block the flow of the massage that seems odd too.

 

Julie

It depends on the client and their comfort level...and what type of work I'm doing...Just out of school I also used a bolster most of the time. As I evolve as an MT I use what works...pillow, bolster or none..I find when I receive sometimes I want a bolster and other times its uncomfortable and rather do with out.  At a Lomi workshop I discovered having the ankles off the table in a prone position is comfortable for me..I offered this position to some of my clients and they were comfortable too...so I say positioning for comfort plays a big role.

Nicely put.

Hopefully we all evolve in our profession. We learn to use pillows, rolled towels and bolsters. Like modalities they are tools we learn to use for the benefit of our clients and ourselves. The only thing we can't do without is the client's body and our own. The rest is the window dressing that makes it easier, better and enhances.


Carmen Contreras said:

It depends on the client and their comfort level...and what type of work I'm doing...Just out of school I also used a bolster most of the time. As I evolve as an MT I use what works...pillow, bolster or none..I find when I receive sometimes I want a bolster and other times its uncomfortable and rather do with out.  At a Lomi workshop I discovered having the ankles off the table in a prone position is comfortable for me..I offered this position to some of my clients and they were comfortable too...so I say positioning for comfort plays a big role.

Hi. I grew with everyone here that it is important to be able to adapt for the clients needs. As far as interrupting the flow of the massage, I have been told by a very knowledgable reiki master and energy worker that it interrupts the flow of ENERGY. Does this sounds familiar to anyone?
Please pardon my typing mistakes (grew = agree). Haha

Andrea Rose said:
Hi. I grew with everyone here that it is important to be able to adapt for the clients needs. As far as interrupting the flow of the massage, I have been told by a very knowledgable reiki master and energy worker that it interrupts the flow of ENERGY. Does this sounds familiar to anyone?

Thanks Andrea. Maybe that is what he was trying to tell me, blocking the flow of energy. Makes some sense to me now.

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