We are frequently asked about the most effective pressure level during a therapeutic massage Pressure is subjective for everyone, so it can be best to operate on a general pressure scale. During a therapeutic massage, the pressure should, on a scale from 1-10, register between 1-7. The actual depth and pressure of a "7" will vary for different people. Often, clients get nervous or wary about the effectiveness of a massage when the pressure registers around a "1" or a "2". There are numerous benefits that come from lighter, and even hands-free work! Modalities such as reiki, manual lymphatic drainage, passive work, and craniosacral therapy are able to create positive changes in a person's body. Too much pressure, however, can have negative effects on a person and, often, it can result in an opposite impact from the intended goals of a session. When the pressure registers between an 8-10 on a person's sensory scale, the massage stops being therapeutic. People tend to tense their muscles against too much pressure and their muscles begin to "fight" with the massage therapist. People usually come in for a massage to help relax their bodies and, when the pressure is too much, they end up leaving with muscles that are still tightly clenched or, in a worst case scenario, actually injured or damaged.
Your massage therapist will check in with you a couple of times during your massage about the pressure, but at any point in time, if you would like more or less, please just let the therapist know! We always want to know immediately if we go into the 8-10 pressure range. Past that, it is all personal preference as to where you fall in the 1-7 range.