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Pregnancy massage tables vs side lying

PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2006 6:19 pm
by randomness0
Hi,
A few potential clients have contacted me requesting massage specifically on a pregnancy massage table. I only work using side-lying and seated with lots of pillows.
Other therapists have pointed out to me that massaging prone on a pregnancy table may not be recommended because:
There may be strains to the lumbar, uterine and pelvic structures
The SI joints can be rotated
There may increased strain on sacrouterine ligaments
The posterior musculature is shortened
Lumbar vertebrae and lumbosacral junction may be compressed and anteriorly displaced.

If this is the case, is side-lying pregnancy massage the only way to go?


Regards
Richard

http://www.innerwestmassage.com.au/pregnancy_massage.php

PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2006 9:13 pm
by terab
i don't offer prenatal but the therapists that i know that do will ONLY massage sidelying. every one of them says not to massage on a prenatal table. just passing that along.

Re: Pregnancy massage tables vs side lying

PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2006 9:33 pm
by palpable
randomness0 wrote: There may be strains to the lumbar, uterine and pelvic structures
The SI joints can be rotated
There may increased strain on sacrouterine ligaments
The posterior musculature is shortened
Lumbar vertebrae and lumbosacral junction may be compressed and anteriorly displaced.



That about sums it up, from what I understand. You can also check out Carol Osborne-Sheets. She has written a book (or two) and teaches CUEs on Pre-natal massage hear in the US.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2006 9:46 pm
by Pandoras_Gift
I use a lot of pillows, I have them elevated to work on the anterior, then flip them side to side to do the posterior. This seems to work the best for me, and I have never had anyone ask if I have a special table. I personally don't think it would be a good idea.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:36 pm
by melb
a pregnant body lying face down flat on a table with a belly hanging below IS a strain on uterine ligaments, the back, everything. A pregnant belly hanging down when someone is on all fours is a good back stretch, helps with positioning of the baby, takes the weight of the baby off the bladder/stomach/diaphram/back/pelvis, been done forever as women have worked in fields, scrubbed floor etc., plus the more recent activities of prenatal yoga and stretching classes. It's a recommended position for positioning the baby in a more favourable position than baby's spine against mother's spine. http://www.spinningbabies.com has a lot of info. (the site does include a picture on a prenatal table for a chiropractic adjustment, but that shouldn't take a long time....)

Positioning on the bodyCushion is halfway between all fours and flat, and I think it is as safe as all fours. I've been using it for pregnancy massage face down right up to due date for over 7 years now with no problem, other than a couple of VERY large bellies (twins) and one client that found it uncomfortable that was eventually diagnosed with a pelvic joint issue, even with those cases, the bodyCushion is great for using side lying, so it is flexible for face down or sidelying, and face up as they are elevated and you can easily slightly elevate the right side. I used to think it didn't matter what side someone would lay on, left seemed to be recommended due to the easier on the heart recovery position, but this site has made me reconsider that form week 30 or so it's probably a good idea to keep to one side, or at least spend most time on one side so gravity can work..

So I am anti-prenatal tables, regardless of how supportive a sling under the belly maybe, but I have no concerns about massage face down when it is in a more on all fours position than back and legs all in one straight line. A lot of the pregnancy cushions I have seen are just full table cushions with holes cut out putting the client in the same position as a prenatal table, but something that can position the back above the knee height make sense to me, and my happy clients :)


***** fixed up broken links

PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2006 5:53 am
by makingachange
ditto on the body cushion.. pricey but i've been using it for 6+ years and my clients love it. people specifically ask if i use that system before booking.

i've done several mom-to-be shows and have demo-d on the BC. i've had a couple of expecting OBs that came right up to due date and loved it.

i totally feel safe with it, as long as i mind my ps and qs... just keep checking in like you would with any client. and practice with it first.

good luck!
amanda

PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2006 6:02 am
by moogie
I also use body cushions on pregnant clients as long as they are comfortable on them. Some clients have been fine all the way up to their due date, some prefer to switch to side-lying around the 7th or 8th month. I go with whatever they are comfortable with.

As the above posts have indicated, the cushions lift and support the body rather than the tables just having a hole cut out of them.

Angie

PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2006 1:45 pm
by charity f
I used to use the pregnancy table at my old workplace, and I found it very awkward when turning over from prone to supine. My clients would have to first do a push-up to get out of the hole, then scooch down the table on their side, then roll over and make sure their bum wasn't in the hole, then sit up completely while I closed the hole for the belly. They were there to relax and it just seemed like soo much work!!
I'm back to side-lying and lots of pillows, and I like it better. I often wondered about strain on the uterine ligaments and the back. I'm saving up for a pregnancy cushion!

PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2006 2:22 pm
by nybor7
Semi reclined is also a GREAT position to have a client during pregnancy massage.
Use LOTS of big pillows and secure them with a sheet/blanket so they do not shift. 2-3 behind the back, 2 under knees, small one or rolled towel under the small of back(there will be a gap without it). One of these days I will buy a wedge to forego the pillows.

Robyn

Re: Pregnancy massage tables vs side lying

PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 12:32 pm
by ripplemassage
Hi Richard, we do all our pregnancy massages side lying.http://www.ripplemassage.com.au/pregnan ... ssage.html mainly because our clients find it difficult to get onto a pregnancy table.

The issue of strain on the back has also come up, so we stopped using them and just bolster, sidelying with pillows.

Hope this helps!

Alison
Ripple Massage
http://www.ripplemassage.com.au

Re: Pregnancy massage tables vs side lying

PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 7:34 pm
by JasonE
randomness0 wrote:Hi,
A few potential clients have contacted me requesting massage specifically on a pregnancy massage table. I only work using side-lying and seated with lots of pillows.
Other therapists have pointed out to me that massaging prone on a pregnancy table may not be recommended because:
There may be strains to the lumbar, uterine and pelvic structures
The SI joints can be rotated
There may increased strain on sacrouterine ligaments
The posterior musculature is shortened
Lumbar vertebrae and lumbosacral junction may be compressed and anteriorly displaced.

If this is the case, is side-lying pregnancy massage the only way to go?

Regards
Richard

http://www.innerwestmassage.com.au/pregnancy_massage.php


This is your opportunity to educate them. Let them know that pregnancy tables are now known to contribute to a host of musculoskeletal issues that many endanger their pregnancy, and you have the expertise to position them both safely AND comfortably so they can enjoy the benefits of massage without the worries that come with pregnancy tables.