What You Can Often Expect From a Physio Massage

Posted on: 20 July 2017

A physio or sports massage is very different than a massage you get at a spa; a physio massage is meant to treat certain muscle conditions, or to speed healing after injuries, whereas a massage at a spa is often done just for relaxation. Because these two types of massages are so different, note what you can often expect from a physio massage versus those you've enjoyed at a spa.


A massage therapist at a spa may ask some basic questions about the type of massage you want, and if you have any muscle or other health conditions, they should know about before starting the massage. A physio massage may include a more thorough assessment, including a check of your posture, range of motion, and the like. If you have persistent pain in one area or any type of muscle soreness or tenderness, they may examine that area, noting your reactions to touch, or may suggest a scan or x-ray before the massage treatment begins. This will allow the physiotherapist to better tailor your massage to your health conditions and the condition of your muscles overall.


A massage at a spa will usually involve you simply lying on the table while the massage therapist works over your muscles and joints, but a physio massage may be more involved. The massage may actually be done on the floor, on a mat, so the therapist has more room to work. He or she may ask you to stretch your legs or arms, or to push a leg or arm back at them while they hold that limb, and so on. You might also note that they will often bend your legs and arms along their joints, or twist your feet and hands at the ankle or wrist, in order to loosen muscles and tendons.

Deepness of massage

A physio massage may include deeper pressure on certain muscles, as the physiotherapist may need to work those muscles harder to encourage blood flow and proper healing. This may get a bit uncomfortable, but it should never be painful, and a patient should always communicate their comfort levels to their physiotherapist.

Because a physio massage is so much more involved than a massage at a spa, you might feel a bit uncomfortable with the treatment, so consider asking if you can bring a chaperone or friend. Most, if not all, physiotherapists understand a patient's potential discomfort and allow an adult chaperone to accompany them, so don't hesitate to ask about this when setting your appointment.


Massage as a health strategy

I have a medical condition that causes me chronic pain all over. It makes it hard for me to go about my day-to-day life. I try to avoid taking painkillers everyday as I know how easy it would be to become totally addicted and let the need for pain relief take over my life. I find that regular massage is an important part of managing my pain and minimising the amount of medication that I need. This blog is a way for me to share my thoughts on the usefulness of massage and which massages strategies can help the most with different types of pain.

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