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Thread: My Massage Thread

  1. #1

    My Massage Thread

    I LOVE giving massages and I've given loads of massages during sessions. One SP who frequently gets migraines specifically requests them from me. So I thought I'd share some of the techniques that seem to work for me. I know there are many books on the topic but it helps to get real feedback on what's working.

    I'm very interested in what other people have found works for them. IMO too few SPs know how to give an erotic and healthy massage. But with practice and possibly a little training I think anybody can learn at least the basics. They are lots of fun to give and are a great ice breaker if you have an especially shy customer.

    One thing I'd strongly suggest is to fork over the $$ for a decent massage table. They are a pain in the ass to transport but definitely will save your back in the long run. I really don't recommend sitting on the massagee. It doesn't really feel that good and impairs your ability to work on the lower back, butt and legs.

    The other thing is, if you start offering massage and business picks up, get your hands and arms worked on my a competent RMT or physiotherapist. Tendonitis is no fun.

    Some basic principles that I try and work with:
    feel what is under your hands
    try and keep in physical contact for the whole massage (as best you can)
    tend to push towards the heart
    maintain consistent stroke direction with smooth stroke transistions

    Note that some people may need blankets (or the heat turned up) as body temp goes down when people lie down.

    Generally what I was taught about swedish massage was to start with broad strokes using your whole hand and then gradually get more and more specific. The idea of the broad strokes is to spread the oil / lotion around evenly. The basic stroke called "effleurage" (sp?) consists of a slow upward movement with the flat of the hand starting at the base of the spine and continuing up the spine to the shoulders and then across the shoulders and back down to the base of the spine (looks like you are making 00). This is a very good warm up. If you feel tension in the shoulders you can slide your hands briefly over the shoulders before going back down.

    Next, you want to start working the fascia against each other. So to do this on the back, once again starting at the base of the spine stand or kneel next to the massagee and place your left hand on the far side of their back with your right hand on the near side. Keeping good pressure move your hands towards each other making sure they pass about 1/2" to 1" apart over the spine itself. This tends to push the fascia in the center of the back into each other without causing an uncomfortable "pinch." This move is almost universally loved by everyone I've done it on.

    Shoulders can be a bit tricky with the cross stroke but you can do a mini version of it over the shoulders before going back down to the base of the spine. Shoulders can be difficult to do and its generally a good idea if you are working on a bed to have the massagee's head at the end of the bed (assuming there is no base board) so you can access them more easily. With shoulders putting direct pressure, leaning in, works quite well. You will want to move your hands from near the neck down to the arm. Kneeding with your fists also works well if the massagee is particularly tense (eg programmers or anyone who does lots of typing).

    Once you've got past the warmup stage you want to work more specifically. Following on from the previous step combine effleurage with the cross stroke. How do you do this? You want to move your hands around the back in a O pattern but in this case you move both hands together. Instead of having both hands push in the same direction (common mistake) you want to move them against each other similar to the cross stroke. This is not "pinching" the fascia together but rather almost rolling it against itself. One way to do this is to move your hands in small circles but in the opposite direction (takes some practice).

    Once you've covered the back with this move do the same thing with your thumbs. This is a good time to find out where they are especially tense and work on that specifically. Its also a good time to gently massage around the spinal column and neck itself doing very small circles on the fascia next to and around the bones. One move that feels particularly good for most people is to massage the point where the base of the skull meets the neck. This is not unlike how we massage the back of the head of a cat. If you experience it you'll know why they purr so much when we do that!

    Doing the butt and the legs is an extension of the same ideas. What I"ve started doing is full body effleurage with more of an emphasis on the legs. You can also do it up to the ass as an alternative. It isn't really possible to do the cross stroke but working with fingertips and thumbs works.

    There is so much you can do with the gluteus maximus its hard to know where to begin. Usually I just knead the butt like a big piece of bread dough, once again working the fascia against itself. Its also a great place for the "rolling pin" lomi-lomi style forearm massage. This is especially pleasureable when working the point where the thigh meets the butt.

    The ass is of course a great place for "tickle" massage. One technique common in the AMPs is for the SP to sit on the table and lift the massagees legs onto their thighs and gently stroke the crack of doom, testicles and maybe the genitals. You'll know if its working at least. Surprisingly this isn't that hard on one's legs and its a great way to transition to the flip. Some people like being brought off this way I've heard. Testicle massage in general feels great if done right.

    Lightly stroking the massagee's sides is also very erotic. And of course, the old stand by, gently licking the rim of the ear feels great. Some people have actually stuck their tongue right in my ear. Not only a bit gross but it doesn't really feel that good.

    An alternative version of the cross stroke is to use forearms. This works on the legs. I only started doing it recently but it seems to get a good response.

    For oil I pretty much only use unscented massage oil from the body shop. You need hardly any of it and it lasts forever. Using lotion, I find I need about 10x as much to get good coverage and lubrication.
    Last edited by john23; 11-25-2006 at 07:16 PM.

  2. #2
    Informative, thanks for posting!

  3. #3

    A couple of additional notes.

    Putting a pillow under the feet of the massagee is a good way to reduce stress on the lower back. Sometimes having a small pillow under the upper chest makes it easier for them to keep their head straight when doing the neck and base of the skull.

    A very long time ago I took a fun one day course at the Sutherland Chan clinic in Toronto. It made a HUGE difference in terms of organizing my technique and getting a good flow going when working on someone. So I thought I'd have a look at what was available in Vancouver. Well, not a heck of alot. However Vancouver School of Bodywork and Massage does offer a quick weekend long intro course:
    I highly recommend doing a bit of training and its a very fun way to spend a weekend with your or other friends.

    Actually, when I did my intro course we all massaged each other. Rubbed lots of oil on hot topless women, none of whom seemed to care that they were with a complete stranger

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