I agree with pueppi's response & would also add, that if a client rebooks with you right after their session, or even weeks, or months later, they were generally pleased with the session they received. Also, if they refer others to you it's another good indication. That said, every client is different, in terms of their needs, likes & dislikes, as well as comfort level with receiving various types of work. Some people only like, or think they like light/swedish for instance - if so they may not appreciate those of us who tend to work more deeply & therapeutically.
If however, you are a practitioner like I am, who educates your clients and suggests what might be more effective for them, and encourages them to speak up as to what makes them uncomfortable, or is simply to much pressure, then they may be more open to having a session that will result in better range of motion, freeing up deeply held tension, etc. You might introduce them to techniques they've never experienced, such as Hot Stone if they've never had it before, and have them get hooked on it!
Always ask them a few simple questions prior to starting, especially with someone new, & have it on your intake/case history form: Have they ever had a massage before? If so what did they like or dislike about other sessions they've had? What is their goal for today? Do they have any specific problem areas, old injuries, acute or chronic pain at anytime (such as with the knees, getting in & out of the car, up & down the stairs for example or from an old whiplash/car accident). Also what type of work do they do, what hobby's do they have, or have they been using their body in a different way than usual (starting a new workout program, taking up tennis/racketball, etc). If they're sitting at a computer all day, or doing hair styling, construction work, all of which will typically result in specific body tension/holding patterns. All of this is designed to provide the practitioner with the information that helps to guide them to give the client a session they'll get the most out of.
Those of us who've been doing this work for years, and studied various modalities usually have a very good idea as to what will work for those who come to us for treatment. I always screen my potential clients, & ask them a few basic questions, like those above when the appointment is made via phone or email. This lets them know that you are professional & that you're interested in providing them the best service possible. So much of being a "good MT" isn't just about the work itself, it's about how you conduct yourself, and that you communicate well with people, show them that you care about what you do & provide services geared to meet their needs. It's also about running your business like a business, setting regular hours & session rates, etc.
Of course therapists can always make some exceptions - as needed - but setting boundaries as to the schedule (such as no same day appointments, etc.) is an important thing & you'll be treated like the professional you are when you set the rules. Always do your utmost to be fully present & aware of your client's time, checking in to be sure that your pressure is good for them, that they are comfortable with what you're doing, & with being on your table with the temperature, bolsters, etc. & it's most likely you'll have a satisfied client!
Last edited by riversinger
on Tue Jul 17, 2012 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
The song of the spirit is as the song
of the river, on a journey back to source.