The initial contact serves several purposes.
First it makes the receiver familiar with the giver’s hands and energy. It prepares the body for the massage and communicates that it is time for treatment and enjoyment.
For the giver it serves another purpose as well. During the initial contact the masseuse gets a sense of what parts of the body are tense and in need of attention, where the energy is low, where the client might feel uncomfortable about the touch and so on. It also serves to attune the two people together and harmonise their energies to obtain the best result.
The oiling is the next step in preparing the body for the massage. For the masseuse this is yet another occasion to evaluate and discover where the body needs special attention and healing.
A good oiling also unifies the body and bring the client to a relaxed state where he can accept the touch and the massage that will happen next. The essential oils used in the massage oil are applied to aid and support the massage that will be given as each essential oil has special properties and synergies.
During the oiling the receiver becomes familiar with the masseuse and a competent oiling creates the foundation for a good and trusting massage. This is when the masseuse shows her confidence and skills so that the receiver can let go in trust that it will be a good experience. The oiling also is a start of the actual massage, as it prepares the muscles for further treatment and is an important step towards complete relaxation.