There's no question that getting a massage is one of the most relaxing ways to spend an hour. But if you've never had a massage before, you probably have some questions about what to expect. Fortunately, Rianon Cepriano, Spa Therapy Supervisor of The Ritz-Carlton in Half Moon Bay can help clear things up. To find out what to wear to a massage, what kind of massage to request, and why to have a massage in the first place,
Why should I have a massage?
"Stress relief, number one," Cepriano says. And along with the relaxation benefits, there are health benefits, too. "It increases circulation, skin tone, and focuses your attention," she adds.
What kind of massage should I have?
"Shiatsu and Thai are wonderful, but for the first time, go with Swedish," Cepriano says. "Swedish massage features very long, flowing strokes. It's more for relaxation."
Should I wear underpants during the massage or not?
That one's up to you. "It makes our job easier without underwear," Cepriano says. "But we can work around it."
Can I request a male or female massage therapist?
Absolutely — just make the request when you make your reservation. "We make it a point to match clients with someone they prefer," Cepriano explains.
How much pressure should I ask for?
"Tell the massage therapist that you want light to moderate pressure," Cepriano advises. "You can always ask him or her to adjust the pressure."
What should I do after the massage?
Drink water — and a lot of it. "Massages release toxins that were trapped in your muscle fibers," Cepriano says. Flushing them out requires lots of hydration.