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Massage is much more than a client lying passively in her own world and a therapist just pressing on muscles. There’s an entire unseen exchange taking place, which both actively take part in. It isn’t something that can be measured except by experiencing it. It’s an exchange of emotions, of intent, of compassion. It’s an exchange of energy, however that is defined.
A massage’s intent can completely change how it’s received and felt by the recipient. If the therapist has her “heart” in the massage, the result is much more profound and more healing than if the therapist is thinking about paying the rent or the noisy neighbour. Seen from the outside the two massages would look exactly the same, but there’s a world’s difference in how it feels to both client and therapist.
The therapists aims to connect with the client during a massage in order to listen to the body and the signals it sends. By connecting, and feeling a deep compassion, it is easier to find those tense muscles and sore points. When the therapist is completely in tune with the client, intuition tells us very clearly where to massage, how long and how deep. This gives the best massages on both ends and the most profound results.
It is possible for both therapist and client to pick up the energy of the other. During the closeness of the massage emotions can be handed over. It is just like some of us can walk into a room and sense the mood instantly, and if we’re not careful, be affected and pick up that mood. As a massage is much more direct and intimate, this picking up of mood can happen much more easily.
This makes it very important that the therapist goes into a session leaving behind her own negative emotions and with the intent of healing and focus on the client. The therapist also needs to be aware of the possibility of picking up the energies of the receiver and detach herself from those emotions.
For the client all that’s needed is to be open-hearted and prepared to receive the healing and energy from the therapist. He should feel safe and trust that the therapist. Responsibility for the energy exchange lies with the therapist who has the experience and education to deal with it, and turn eventual negative energies into something positive.
There are many ways massage therapists deal with this situation. Most have a small cleansing ritual they perform before the session to prepare themselves and gather focus, leaving their own luggage by the door. During the massage there is often a focus on compassion and intent, and some even visualize being a conduit for universal love or energy. Washing hands before and after the massage also serves as a cleansing ritual.
What are your experiences with energy exchange during a massage?
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