No matter where we are in our journey, communication remains a consistent need in our lives.
Adequate communication between massage therapist and client is certainly no exception. In fact, it is becoming increasingly popular with the #metoo movement for female clients to accuse male therapists of sexual assault and battery; when in fact, all that has occurred is poor communication.
Recently, I found myself in court as a qualified expert witness in one such case. I was responsible for educating the judge about what is considered proper, reasonable, and even expected in Massage and Bodywork.
It is understandable for both male and female clients to sometimes feel uncomfortable with bodywork in the breast, gluteal, or groin area; it is the responsibility of both client and therapist to maintain open lines of communication.
While massage therapists are trained to look for nonverbal cues while working on our clients, this does not absolve the client from the responsibilities of communicating at any point during the massage how they would like the therapist to alter their pressure, area, or technique.
Since communication is a two-way street, I call upon both massage therapists and clients everywhere to ensure that they are adequately communicating during this important therapeutic experience.