Why Should I Get A Massage?

Massage reduces your pain

Research into massage is difficult to do but the little bit of imperfect evidence that exists shows massage can improve low back pain (1).  Unsurprisingly, the research also suggests massage doesn’t permanently fix every person from their back pain forever. REALLY?!?  I’m not aware of many things that do.  

Massage makes us feel good

Massage, like all manual therapy provided by skilled therapists, creates general well being effects (these are called non-specific effects in research).  This doesn’t mean they’re simple, in fact it’s the opposite, but somehow they are always overlooked as important.  Feeling good should be the primary objective. 

It’s no small claim that the imperfect evidence in support of massage has also shown to reduce depression and anxiety (2). With the right therapist, in the right environment.  Perhaps not the twenty minute brutal attack-type massage you get at your local shopping centre.

Another consideration is whether you like your massage therapist.  I'm sure intuitively you know this is important but once again it's effect is often underestimated.  A positive relationship creates a therapeutic alliance and it makes a big difference in how much better you will feel and for how long (3).

Can’t I just go to that drive-through massage place?

You can get a massage just about anywhere, anytime.

I’m sure you’ve seen the huge number of massage outlets popping up on High St in Northcote, Thornbury and Preston.

And what about the massages available at Northcote Plaza or Northland Shopping Centre?  What will you get for your money?  What are your therapists’ qualifications?  Are they cheaper than the massage you’ll get with a two (or three) year qualified, private health rebatable, massage therapist at Fairfield Osteopathic Clinic?  

As a society we want something and we want it now. That seems to be why there has been an explosion of massage therapy “shops” open in shopping centres throughout Melbourne.  When you can have your aching back, neck or shoulder massaged RIGHT NOW we somehow stop caring about what qualifications the person touching our aching body has.

The more painful, the better?

The plethora of places to get a massage has led some legitimate, qualified practitioners to provide painful, heavy handed treatments so people walk away feeling like something serious and something medical has happened. 

I’ve had a few patients lately who tell me about their experiences (not at our clinic) where they’ve cried during the treatment.  I question the therapeutic value of this for anyone. 

So get back into your body.

We live in a world filled with mental activity, computers, phones, social interaction, driving, working and we forget to exist in our bodies.  We forget to move, to leap and run with joy.  One hour of thoughtful, educated massage from a caring practitioner can bring people back into their bodies.  Suddenly, they are back within themselves, in the room, in the present and they can get on with the job of feeling better.   

Don’t leave your body with therapists who are semi-skilled.  The massage therapists at Fairfield Osteopathic Clinic have all trained for over two years and will work with you to meet your goals, whether you need support for your marathon training, or massage to help reduce your stress and anxiety.  

You can book online or call 9489 0981 to schedule an appointment........RIGHT NOW! ; )  


1. Daniel C. Cherkin et al. A Comparison of the Effects of 2 Types of Massage and Usual Care on Chronic Low Back Pain: A Randomized, Controlled Trial. Ann Intern Med. 2011 Jul 5; 155(1): 1–9.

2. Moyer. Affective massage therapy. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. 2008. PubMed #21589715.Massage researcher and psychologist Dr. Christopher explains that the only truly confirmed benefits of massage are its effects on mood (“affect”)

3. Ferreira PH, Ferreira ML, Maher CG, Refshauge KM, Latimer J, Adams RD.The therapeutic alliance between clinicians and patients predicts outcome in chronic low back pain. Phys Ther. 2013 Apr;93(4):470-8.

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