FAQ: Does Massage Hurt?
Many people believe that a massage has to hurt in order to be effective. Well, it doesn’t! You’ll be happy to hear that the saying, “No pain, no gain” doesn’t apply to massage therapy. Sometimes the most effective massages are the ones that don’t cause you any pain. Something that feels marvelous, and it’s good for you too? It doesn’t get much better than that!
Muscles naturally react to any sort of pain. When your muscles feel that your body is about to be injured the reflex to deflect the pain is stimulated. If your massage therapist is ever applying too much pressure, your muscles tighten together to naturally counterattack the force, and that is not a great way to relax.
A massage is meant to relieve the tension of your muscles so if you feel as though the massage therapist is applying too much pressure for comfort, just ask them to use less pressure. Seriously, we want you to tell us.
Don’t go into the massage thinking there won’t be any discomfort at all though. Pain and discomfort are two different things. People usually describe the discomfort as a “good hurt” - especially in reference to getting a massage. When you experience pain during a massage, it is more than discomfort and could even cause bruising or injury.
Everybody has different tolerances for pain, so a massage that is painful for one person may not be painful for you. If you find that your massage therapist isn’t working between your tolerance levels for pain, then it’s important that you say something. Massages should almost never cause you physical pain.