Portable Massage Tables (And Other Massage Therapy Tools)

Massage therapy is an art form where you, the therapist, use the art of touch to loosen tight muscles and treat injuries.  During your training, you will learn how to use your hands, fingers, forearms, and elbows to treat a client.  As you continue to learn about how to become a massage therapist, you will be taught how to use tools to further enhance the massage treatment you deliver.  The equipment and supplies available can ultimately help to achieve your goal of providing quality care to your clients.  While this list is not inclusive of the many different tools out there, it will give you an idea of what you might come into contact with during your career as a masseuse.

Massage Table.  Perhaps the most recognized tool, the massage table is used so a client can rest comfortably while receiving massage therapy treatment.  Tables can be either stationery or portable, and all should allow you to adjust the head and height position.  Most tables have a donut-style headrest that helps to support the head, whether the client is lying face up or face down.   Some tables are tailored for the modality of massage being performed.

Linens  In some instances, your client will need to remove their clothing prior to receiving massage treatment.  To ensure the client remains comfortable, you will need to ensure you have sheets on hand to cover the patient.  Your training will teach you how to properly provide massage services to a client while they are covered with a sheet or towel.  Other linens you will need are pillows and headrest covers.  The massage linens will also need to be cleaned on a regular basis.

Massage Oils and Lotion.  There are many different types of massage oil available to you, so much so that you may feel overwhelmed trying to decide which oils you will need.  Oil is used to help your hands glide over the skin easily.  It is a good idea to have a variety of different oils, to accommodate those persons who might have allergies to nuts.  Oil can also be used to provide aromatherapy.  Some common oils used are sweet almond, jojoba, coconut, and grapeseed oil.  Since oil has the chance of dripping, some therapists prefer to use lotions or gels formulated for massage.  A good idea is to avoid using scented products, so as not to offend your client.

Music.  Have a selection of relaxing music in your supply kit is essential to creating a calm environment.  Many people believe the sound, when used in conjunction with massage, as the ability to aid in healing and induce a state of deeper relaxation.  The music heard while getting a massage can linger in the subconscious well after the services were received.  Before playing the music, make sure you as the therapist have listened to it.  Sit in a chair with your eyes closed and listen to the music from beginning to end.  This will give you a feel for what your client can experience.

Massage Chair.  When choosing a massage chair, you want to ensure that it is comfortable.  You will need to consider how you plan on using the chair.  Also, what type of material do you want your chair to be made out of?  Leather and vinyl are two commons materials used to make massage chairs.  You can choose to get a manual chair or one that is powered.  If you need the chair to recline while you perform your services, do you want a partial recline or one that can recline fully?  The seat width/depth will also need to be considered as your clients will be of various sizes and heights.

Stones.  Massage stones are a special type of tool that can be used to provide therapy via heat.  Stones are typically heated and placed on the body for both weight and heat therapy.  Proper use of massage stones during therapy requires specialized training.  Similar to a heating pad, the temperature from a heated stone can help to aid in the healing process.  Massage stones can also be used cold so as to offer a cold-stone massage or contrast massage to help ease inflamed tissues.

You should now have an idea as to some of the supplies and tools you will make use of as a massage therapist.  Don’t rush into buying everything that is marketed to massage therapists.  Ensure that you purchase equipment that will first benefit your client.  Massage therapy tools and supplies should be used to enhance the therapy that you, the masseuse, will be delivering through your hands, fingers, and arms.