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~ What is the difference between relaxation and treatment massage?
~ How can I get the most out of my session?
~ My muscles feel sore when I get a massage. What does that mean?
~ What can I do at home for self care?
~ Tell me about your oils and equipment.
~ How do you accept payment?
~ How can I write a review/testimonial for you?

What is the difference between relaxation & treatment massage?

With relaxation massage, my main goal is to use your muscles to induce your central nervous system to relax. It is gentler, it flows, you can just be quiet and receive. You can daydream or fall asleep.

I am giving you a guided tour of your body and you can allow the work to remind you how good and relaxed your body can feel.

Treatment massage requires your active participation. I need feedback about how the injured area feels while it is being worked on.

Also, I try to help you understand how the injury happened if it is not readily apparent. A chronic injury has deep roots that take some investigative work. A traumatic injury may require the resolution of longstanding postural habits in order to fully heal. We work together in these sessions.

It is important that you pay attention to your body. There is a difference between tension soreness and an injury. If you are injured, seek medical attention.

How can I get the most out of my session?

Here are some steps you can take before, during and after a massage to enhance your session.

Drink plenty of water before and after your session.

Feel your body. Where is it tight? What areas have you “checked out” of?

Some areas will be harder to relax; use your breath to move the area.

Schedule plenty of downtime after your session. The longer you stay relaxed, the longer you will stay relaxed.

Breathe, especially when I find a tight spot. Exhaling fully while I am holding a knot tells your nervous system to relax the muscle. When the three of us work together (you, your nervous system and myself), the changes made to muscle length tend to be more permanent.

Let the table hold you. This is a good time to practice letting go and just receive, be taken care of. Stop worrying about your thighs or your stubble. I’m glad you showed up for your session and I’m glad you love massage. I have no feelings about your thighs!

Talk to me if you are cold, or hot, if you need more bolsters or if you need more or less pressure. Just because you liked deep, intense massage last session doesn’t mean you have to have that all the time.

My muscles feel sore when I get a massage. What does that mean?

Most bodies have places where tension is stored, and those places will feel sore. When I am working on areas where I feel tension, I slow my strokes so the muscles have more time to release. If this is painful for you so that you can’t stay relaxed, please say so. We can find a depth where you are comfortable and your muscles get the release they need. Your central nervous system will not make permanent changes to muscle length if you are in pain or stress mode, so working at an intensity that makes you hold your breath or feel “bad pain” (versus “hurts good” pain) is counterproductive.

Sometimes you will experience soreness after a massage. It will feel like you have worked out, and the soreness will last for one or two days. There are many reasons for this: dehydration, slow lymph (from lack of exercise or movement), some scar treatment work, work that is too deep or adhesions. If these conditions are present, we will usually chat about it during the session. Drink plenty of water, stretch and keep movement in the area, and ice the area for 15 to 20 minutes at night. Please call me if you experience soreness that you are concerned about or that lasts longer than three days.

What can I do at home for self care?

Take stretch breaks. Add ice; add heat. A lot of people have repetitive jobs that require their body to maintain a posture or perform a movement that is unnatural. Examples include sitting at a desk for hours at a time, twisting and lifting, or bending forward repeatedly. Take frequent stretch breaks — five minutes will do very nicely — and move the stressed areas. Ice is always good. It cuts inflammation so you won’t create adhesions in the tissue. Heat is good, too, because it relaxes muscles and increases blood flow. For chronic tension and stress, I like to recommend a vascular flush: 15 minutes with ice alternated with 15 minutes of heat. This is really good for stressed muscles and can help a lot.

Be aware of your body. Do you always carry your purse or bag on the same side? When you are driving, are you holding yourself tense? Are your hips straight? It can take some detective work to find the little 30- or 40-second activities that add up to the sore shoulder or knee.

Add some Y’s to your routine. Yoga and stretching are excellent for your muscles, and they have the added benefit of teaching you about your body. Once you have some basic body awareness, you can work out with Yamuna balls. A session with Yamuna can be the equivalent of a deep tissue bodywork session.

Eat well. Diet is important. You are what you eat and drink. Is there anything in your diet that you know is challenging your body?

Massage each other. The world needs more, not less, touching.

Tell me about your oils and equipment.

I am affected by the oils just as much as my clients are. I make sure that I use food quality oil, and I scent it myself with essential oils that have been crafted by a medical aromatherapist. I always have unscented available as well as a few blended oils. Occasionally I will buy prepared massage lotion if it is organic.

I am an equipment junkie. I have body cushions that position my client in anatomical neutral. I also have heaters, fleece table pads, Tempurpedic face rests and flannel sheets on my tables. When it is cold outside, I heat rocks and use them for added warmth for your hands and core.

How do you accept payment?

I always take cash, checks, Visa and Mastercard.

I donate about 10 percent of my work to people who have
life-challenging illness.

How can I write a review or testimonial for you?

I have a review on Insider Pages for my Everett and Mukilteo locations.

I am also a member of LinkedIn. You can connect with me and / or write a recommendation.

You can find me on Yelp.

Thanks! Your acknowledgment and appreciation mean a lot.

Words from Amanda about Tammy

I have had cancer since 2002. I’ve had numerous surgeries (5 in 4 years) and therapies (radiation, radioactive iodine, chemo) to reverse the cancer. These cures have created their own set of issues. It’s difficult to put into words how wonderful I feel after a cranio session. I go in tense, tight, often hurting. After one session, I feel relaxed, pain is diminished, I feel balanced. This comfort lasts for several days. I feel that my body has a chance to heal itself during that time. And while I still have cancer, it has settled down significantly. No new surgeries in past year.

If one is living with any sort of physical condition causing pain, stiffness, scar tissue, trauma, I would highly recommend trying cranio. You’re not pouring anything foreign into your system. You’re allowing your body to heal itself
— Amanda Depot, Mukilteo, Washington