When I tell people what I do for a living, sometimes I’m saddened by the response I get. Surprisingly often, I am told “I’d love a massage, but I’m too self-conscious.” Or “I really need a massage, but I don’t like being touched!”

And there are others who won’t explain the real reason they are afraid, as they are too embarrassed.

I have many clients who were previously nervous about having a massage, but who now look forward to each session. With this series of three short articles I will explain why you are not unusual in your fears, and that you really don’t need to be shy about having a massage.

I’m too self-conscious

The most important point I need to make is this: a professional massage therapist does not care what you look like!

We care about your aching muscles. We care about your stiff joints. We care about your stress levels. We care about your sleep patterns, your circulation and the other parts of you that need attention in order to get you healthy. We want to help you.

We do not care about how fat or thin you are. Men, we don’t care if you have a hairy back. Ladies, we don’t care if you have hairy legs. We’re not judging your stretch marks, your scars, your moles – we only look at your body with a view to assessing and helping your health.

Now, I do know what it’s like to be self-conscious! I have to admit that I don’t like it when colleagues massage my legs, because I’m embarrassed about them. But I just have to remind myself that they are not looking at my fat thighs, cellulite, and hairy bits I’ve missed while shaving! When they look at my legs, they are just focusing on the tissue and the muscle and deciding what the best massage technique would be to treat each particular area.

I’m too fat

 A common cause of being self-conscious is being overweight – “I’m too fat, I need to lose weight before I have a massage.” No, you don’t! As long as you don’t have any health conditions that prevent you from having a massage, your weight is no barrier, and as mentioned above, we do not judge you for your weight.

If you are uncomfortable laying on your front, you can lay on your side, or sit in a chair. You probably already know that a massage can help relieve some of the aches and pains associated with being overweight, and there’s really no reason to put it off.

I’m worried I’ll be exposed

Your massage therapist will keep you covered at all times, and will only uncover the parts that they are working on. We have no interest in seeing your boobs or your bits!

Before I start a massage, I always explain to my clients which clothes to remove and which to keep on (which varies depending on the type of massage), and then I will leave the room while they undress and get comfortable on the couch. If a client needs helping onto the couch, then I will help them while keeping them wrapped in the towels.

I hope this has helped convince you that there is no need to be self-conscious about having a massage. Next I’ll be looking at options for massage for people who don’t like being touched, and cover some of the real hidden reasons people avoid having a massage.
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