How should I prepare for the massage?

It's best not to eat a heavy meal before your massage as you will be laying on your stomach for at least half the massage. Also, if you are sick, a massage may not be the best treatment for you to receive until you are well again. It is important to know that Michelle uses oil for most massages unless asked to use massage lotion as an alternative.

For your further relaxation, it's a good idea to turn your cell phone off or set it to vibrate. 

Do I have to take off all my clothes? 

It's customary for a client to disrobe prior to receiving massage. This allows the massage therapist to access all body parts with ease and to give the best massage possible. Please note that any body part not being worked on is draped by a sheet and blanket. Underwear may be worn during the massage. The massage is not sexual in any way and the massage therapist is respectful of the clients modesty at all times.

Will there be draping? 

Yes, any body part not being worked on by the massage therapist is always draped by a sheet and blanket.

What kinds of oils/lotions are used? Will I leave feeling greasy or need to shower right after? 

Biotone Massage Lotion, which is paraben free, is used for all massages. It's ok to allow the lotion to moisturize the skin after a massage and is not necessary to take a shower after your treatment. However, you may feel a bit oily afterwards and a shower may be just the way to remove any excess lubricant on your body. You can also ask Michelle to limit the amount of lotion used or to keep it away from your hair.

Can I bring my own oil or lotion?

It is absolutely ok for you to bring your own oil or lotion as long as it is not harmful to the massage therapist. This is especially important for clients who have sensitive skin and are in need of special skin products.

What parts of my body will be massaged? Can I ask for more time to be spent on certain areas? 

During most massages the head, back, glutes, legs, face, and feet are massaged. However, if you need more time on a certain area of your body, please do not hesitate to ask. Remember, this is your money and your massage time. Make it a great massage for you!

What are the benefits of massage?

Scientific study has now shown that there are many of the healing aspects of massage. Just a few of the benefits of massage are:

*Helps rid the body of toxins
*Causes release of natural endorphins and promotes relaxation
*Stretches superficial tissue
*Assists lymphatic and venous flow
*Increases nutrition to the cells and skin
*Increases the red and white blood cell count
*Can help reduce certain types of edema
*Stimulates the sensory receptors (nerves) of the skin and deeper tissue
*Relieves joint ache and pain
*Promotes good posture and self esteem

Are there any reasons massage might not be recommended? 

If you are sick with cold or flu symptoms, a massage may not be the best treatment for you until after you are well again.  Pregnant women should wait until their second trimester for a massage treatment. Any client with uncontrolled high blood presure should not receive deep work. The list can go on and on, but a brief discussion will take place with each client prior to their massage session to make sure that treatment is ok for the day of their visit. You may also want to consult your physician if you have any questions about receiving massage.

Do I have to make small talk with the therapist during the massage? 

No way! Please make the massage your own. The therapist is there to make your experience the best one that you can possibly have. Please feel free to relax during your massage and should you snore, don't worry about it!

Is tipping expected after the massage? 

While any gratuity is always at the discretion of the client, it is customary and welcomed by your massage therapist. Tipping the person who gave you your massage is a nice gesture if she has given you a good massage. If you do decide to give your therapist a tip, the amount to give is entirely up to you. The average tip is 15-20% of the charge for the particular service the therapist performed.

What certifications does Michelle have and what do they mean?  

Michelle has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.  She began her study of massage by earning a Massage Practitioner Certificate from the Central California School of Body Therapy, which allowed Michelle to start her massage career in 1998 while she was still in college.

She then achieved a Swedish Massage Certificate in 2008 from the McKinnon Institute in Oakland allowing Michelle to brush up on her Swedish Massage skills and feel comfortable entering the massage world again by starting her own business. Her Certificate of Reflexology from the McKinnon Institute allows Michelle to perform Foot Reflexology massage on her clients. Finally, she earned a Cerficate of Deep Tissue 1 from the McKinnon Institue, allowing Michelle to perform Deep Tissue Massage on her clients.