Massage & Bodywork

May/June 2012

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TEN FOR TODAY That Extra Touch 1. PROVIDE HEATED WRAPS This is a wonderful indulgence that can start the minute clients walk in the door. While they're filling out the intake paperwork, you can hand them a cup of tea and put a heated wrap around their shoulders. It will help them start to relax even before they climb on the table. Hotshotz ( sells some nifty reusable heat packs, including one specifically designed for the neck and shoulders, which heat up instantly when you click the activator button and stay warm for up to three hours. "Most massage therapists use it before the start of the massage to loosen and relax the neck muscles, then you can move it to another area while you work on that spot," says Hotshotz owner Jesse Schexnayder. You can also try a neck roll filled with buckwheat, available from most massage retail suppliers for $8–$15. Briefly heat it in the microwave before giving it to the client. The heated buckwheat smells wonderful, and clients may just want to buy one to take home with them. They'll think about you every time they use it. 2. INVEST IN A TABLE WARMER This is especially important for massage therapists in cooler climates or in air-conditioned salons. Electric table warmers not only provide extra warmth for clients, they also provide an extra layer of padding. "I love table warmers," says Angie Patrick, spokesperson for Massage Warehouse ( "It's a relaxation thing. You drop your clothes and you're a little chilly anyway. Having something warm for someone to climb into is very nurturing." 3. TRY THEMED SHEETS There's nothing wrong with clean, white sheets. But for those who want a more memorable look, colors or patterns can send a subtle message. Massage Naturals (www.massagenaturals. com) has 22 different colors of fashion bedding, including matching or contrasting coverlets, runners, and bolsters. Desert Morning, in shades Add Value and Keep Clients By Rebecca Jones of camel brown and neutral beige, is popular, especially in the southwest. Country Meadow, with its white, chocolate, and sage palette, is another bestseller. "It helps give a high-end hotel type of look," says Jeff Duke, product manager. "It's something that really seems to help with the initial impression. It won't change the actual treatment, of course, but it's about the presentation when someone enters the room." OIL MIXTURES What client wouldn't feel pampered knowing her therapist prepared massage oils specifically with her in mind? Create a customized blend for an individual client using essential oils that address specific needs, such as stress or headaches. At the end of the session, send your client home with a vial of that oil. "I tell therapists to go to a local 4. office supply store and get little return- address-sized labels imprinted with their contact information, and put them on a vial you give your client," says Dianna Dapkins, president and owner of Pure Pro Massage Products CREATE CUSTOMIZED Celebrate ABMP's 25th anniversary and you may win a refund on your membership. 21

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