A massage should usually be a pleasant, relaxing experience. The amount of pressure that you use while giving a foot, back, or full body massage can mean the difference between pain and pleasure.
Unless you have a very good reason for it, a massage should never be painful. Gentler treatments tend to produce better results then deep pressure.
Over 50% of people who have stopped getting massages, fired their massage therapist, or are actively trying to find a new massage spa said that their reason for doing so was that the massages were too intense.
It is worth noting that different people have different pain scales, therefore the amount of pressure that feels good to one person, could be painful for another person.
Different parts of the body also respond differently to pressure amounts. What feels good on your lower back can cause excruciating pain and even injury in the area around your ankles.
If you are performing a massage on someone, be sure to communicate with them, be attentive, and respect what they are telling you.
If your client tells you that the massage is causing pain, back off and use less pressure, don’t continue applying the same pressure while trying to convince your client that this is good for them and you know what you’re doing.
Likewise, if you are on the receiving end of a massage, be assertive and tell your massage therapist if they are using too much or not enough pressure. It is not worth being in pain during and after a massage just because you were afraid to speak up in an attempt to be polite. While too much pressure can cause pain and possible injury, not enough pressure will make a massage a pointless waste of money as you will not receive any of the benefits.