Sean McCoy LMT

After The Session

Once the bodywork portion of your massage session is complete, I will leave the studio to go wash up and get the rest of our business ready. You are invited to stay right where you are. There is no “next client” waiting, so do not feel any pressure to return to normal. Not just yet anyway. In fact, while lying on the table consider some of the following as ways to return to the world on your terms. 

First, just engage your mind. No physical activity required. This is time to just be passive and aware.

In time, consider adding some dynamic activities. This controlled approach to the first 5-10 minutes “After The Session” specifically helps to re-establish your proprioception (sensation of where you are in space). Please use this time as a way to avoid dizziness and possibly even nausea when standing up, dressing, lacing, combing, etc.

Passive Activities

  • Just Breathe
    Slowly inhale for 4 seconds. Hold for 4 seconds. Slowly exhale for 4 seconds. Hold for 4 seconds. Repeat a few times. While you are breathing…
  • Reflect
    Think about your toes. How do they feel? Now think about your feet. How do they feel? Ask yourself about your ankles and lower legs. Your knees, thighs and hips. Consider each area that received massage. How do you feel?
  • Imagine
    Think about how massage is helping you feel how you want to feel. Think of this feeling lasting and benefitting you for a long time. Think of you doing things that will help keep this feeling going.

Dynamic Activities

  • Feel Movement Pick a body part and just start moving it around slowly. Think about how it feels. Explore your full range of motion, but do not try to stretch. Just feel the movement.
  • Stretch While you are laying on the table, or after you leave the table, take time to get a deep stretch from the tissues most deeply worked. Remember, stretch to discomfort and then ease off a little bit, and hold while you breathe.
  • Treat Yourself On the small side table there is a 16oz. bottle of water waiting for you next to a bowl full of chocolates. Help yourself to chocolates! Whatever is necessary to get you to open that water and begin a 4 hour process of over hydrating yourself.

Returning To The World

Once you are dressed and started the hydrating process, take one more moment to breathe. When you leave the massage studio, do so on your terms. Not only did the massage give your body a much needed reset. It gave your parasympathetic nervous system a much needed reset as well. Recognize that you are renewed in both body and mind. Allow that thought to give your spirit a hug.

I will meet you in the front room. Of course we have to take care of payment and possibly rescheduling, but first: How are you feeling? How did I do? 

Session Feedback

Amazing and great are wonderful words to hear. And the last thing I want to do is begin interrogating you with a barrage of questions. Please consider providing feedback on the following topics.

  • Did you get the massage you wanted?
    If you had a specific issue or issues, did I address those to your satisfaction? Did I miss anything? This is a chance to subjectively consider if this was money well spent.
  • Are you in any pain?
    Beaten and sore after a deep tissue massage can be normal. Feeling pain in movement is not. Please let me know if the bodywork has caused any new pain or concern of pain. There maybe some specific post massage remedies that I can demonstrate to help reduce the intensity and duration.
  • Do you have any questions or concerns about the work?
    Let me know if I massaged any part of you that you did not want massaged. Or if I applied hot towels, or lotion that was not requested. Please let me know if the table was at all uncomfortable, or if at anytime you felt not in control of your session.
  • Do you know what to do to keep the feeling going?
    I do! I can explain over-hydrating. I can demonstrate some routine stretches. We can talk about postural considerations, or possible modifications to exercise routines. I want to provide my knowledge, when it is of benefit.
    Remember: I’m not a doctor, physical therapist or personal trainer. I do not want to force my knowledge, especially if it might contradict existing professional recommendations.

What To Expect

Deep Tissue massage, especially Deep Therapy sessions often have the following effects:

  • Limited Cold/Flu Like Sensations
    This sensation is brought to you by your lymphatic system. You have high levels of metabolic acids and white blood cells in your lymphatic system. You want to speed the diffusion process in order to return your lymphatic fluid to a less viscus state. Water and Movement are key. Lots of water, and easy movements. Take a walk. Play charades. Do some Tai-Chi. Put on your favorite music and dance!
  • Muscle Soreness
    While I am always preaching about avoiding pain during session: It is impossible. Especially when it hurts so good! Deep Tissue massage veterans know, when done right, a few days of soreness is actually a few days reminder of how good it feels. But if you are feeling too much soreness. Or feeling it for too long, be sure to let me know. A little soreness can be welcome. Let’s not make it a habit of overdoing it.
  • Bruising
    During a Custom Massage, I will do my best to communicate if there is a possibility of bruising with any of the work I am doing. However, I cannot guarantee that my massage will not induce some bruising. 
    Repeated applications of Ice (30 seconds) then Heat (2 minutes) in what is known as a Contrast Treatment, provide the fastest ways to reduce the color, sensation and intensity of the bruising.
  • Feeling Stronger
    Whatever muscle groups were massaged, you should experience either an increase in strength, or an increase in muscle stamina. Deep tissue massage has unlocked more tissues to participate in movement. It has freed tissue from each other, so that moving now involves moving less extraneous tissue, and only those related to the activity. 
  • Greater Range Of Motion
    Whether you can now twist and reach into the backseat of a car. Reach the top shelf of a cupboard. Or get down onto the floor and then get back up again. You will feel the greater range of motion you can now achieve. Be sure to keep doing activity that keeps you going through your full range of motion, to keep the benefit as long as possible.
  • Easier Breathing
    If you received upper body work, that included Pectoralis, Latissimus and Serratus work (and you will know if you did), you can expect to be able to take deeper breathes. Do it! The increase in your range of motion extends to the intercostals of your rib cage. 
  • Peaceful, Easy Feelings
    Because massage affects the parasympathetic nervous system. You have no choice but to also enjoy the somatic mental relief massage induces. Some experience it as a “shift of perspective“. Others describe a “load being removed“. Meditate on the idea that you have no choice. Emotional healing comes with massage. Do not be surprised by a sharp decline in worrisome or troublesome thoughts. Instead, recognize the peace and recognize how nice it is to be able to live with yourself, just a little bit easier. And if you are bothered by negative thoughts, meditate on your right to receive healing during massage. The same way you are able to expect your body to feel better, place that expectation on your spirit. Contemplating how good you felt on the table, will stimulate the parasympathetic to relive the sensation over and over again.