Updated: Apr 15, 2020
This is a question we receive from folks we encounter at our community outreach events and through our social media channels all the time. The assumption sometimes is that because our massage team works interconnectedly with our Physical Therapy staff that one must be a patient coming in for injury rehabilitation in order to receive massage at our locations. We are happy to say that the answer is, “No!” you do not need to be a patient coming in for physical therapy in order to experience the RU difference our massage team makes.
Therapeutic massage has many benefits and our massage team aims to provide all clients with massage sessions always focused on improving quality of life. When working in conjunction with our PT staff, this oftentimes means helping to improve range of motion of a frozen shoulder, decrease swelling after joint replacement surgery, and/or reduce reactive spasm in a muscle to shut down the pain-spasm cycle that is perpetuating chronic pain. This is no different than how we approach each massage session for clients coming to us from outside of the Physical Therapy realm. These clients may still have restriction in range of motion from chronic postural compensations. They may be experiencing swelling in their sinuses from seasonal allergies. Or there may be reactive spasm in the hamstrings from chronic lengthening associated with a weak core and anteriorly rotated pelvis. Our massage team will evaluate and assess each client, regardless of the nature of their pain or limitation and regardless of being a Physical Therapy patient or not, to determine the best approach to alleviate muscle tension and soothe their pain.
Certainly there may be times when a client has been working with a massage therapist for several visits and that massage therapist may encourage the client to consider physical therapy as a complement to the soft tissue work being done on the massage table. When a client is coming in regularly for massage and just not seeing long-term improvement in their pain or other symptoms is precisely when a massage therapist may recommend either an injury screen or evaluation with a Physical Therapist to determine if there are compensatory issues that massage is not addressing, or to assess whether a guided strengthening program would achieve the results the client is hoping for.
So if you are looking for a solution to aching muscles, chronically tight (neck/jaw/hips/back/insert body part here), tension headaches, or the stress of life please consider scheduling a massage session at Rehab United today. Whether you’re coming to us for Physical Therapy or in search of top quality massage work, our team of highly trained massage therapists are ready to help you.
Erynne Hill, MS, ATC, HHP is an athletic trainer, holistic health practitioner, and Director of Massage & Wellness for Rehab United. She received practical education and thousands of hours of experience working with athletes in the athletic training room and on the field during her undergraduate education in Tennessee. She transitioned to working as a massage therapist and bodyworker as her primary career path when she moved to San Diego in 2003. Since that time, Erynne has continued working with clients and patients seeking therapeutic and remedial massage and expand on her knowledge base by earning a Master’s Degree in Exercise Science at SDSU in 2008.