How is massage for pregnancy different?
Prenatal massage sessions are designed in consultation with you—some women come in for a session that is much more focused on relaxation, others need really specific therapeutic work to address particular discomforts. Most women need a little of both. Your comfort and safety during the massage are always the most important elements of any session. Below are two of the major areas that distinguish pregnancy massage.
Positioning on the table: As the body changes shape and size during pregnancy, positioning options during massage (and sleep!) become increasingly limited. We work with our clients mostly in a side-lying position on the massage table. To ensure your comfort, we use special, orthopedically-designed cushions to position you on your side and keep you well supported. Most women find this extremely comfortable and often pick up some creative pillow tips for use at home. (more on pillows below!)
Areas of Focus: In general a prenatal massage session is going to spend a lot of time working on a woman’s hips, back, shoulders and neck. These areas hold a lot of tension, and are often bearing the brunt of her changing shape and loosening ligaments. A full-body massage is fully appropriate for a healthy pregnancy, with some modifications as discussed with your therapist.
Please note that treatment from your massage therapist is intended as a supportive therapy complimenting the prenatal care of your midwife or physician, never as a replacement.