How to Get a Real Foot Massage That Will Knock Your Socks Off!
Summer is almost here, which means sandal season is just around the corner. After such a long winter in boots and closed-toe shoes that give our feet support, we suddenly move to shoes that flop and wonder why our back, hips, knees, and feet hurt so much. Mostly, it’s due to less shock absorption found in those flimsy shoes that keep our feet cool.
If you are like most people, your feet can hurt all year long and not just seasonally. There is a solution that could help you put a pep in your step – a therapeutic foot massage. How is that different from those “strip mall foot spas”, you ask? There are several things you should know before seeking where you are going to go to get a foot massage. Here are some facts for you;
- There are over 26 bones and over a hundred muscles, tendons and ligaments in each foot.
- The vertical force exerted on the feet while running is 3 times your body weight.
- When walking, the vertical force on your feet is 1.5 times your body weight.
- 10% of the population will suffer from plantar fasciitis in their lifetime.
- There are over 100 forms of Arthritis, many of which affect the foot and ankle.
Just to complicate things, if you have Diabetes, have had blood clots or poor circulation, wherever you get a foot massage, you should know that the person working on your feet knows something more than just how to put oil on and move their hands. Quality care can cost more, but it is worth it in the end.
The massage laws in the State of Illinois exempt those who are certified (not licensed) to practice Reflexology. Most of the foot spas that you find in strip malls do not employ Licensed Massage Therapists. The law also states that if you practice energy work or reflexology only and did not attend an accredited Massage Therapy Program of over 550 hours, you are not allowed to touch any part of the body other than hands, feet, and ears. Injury can occur if someone is just pushing down on your body without real intent or purpose. Don’t let that happen to you.
Massage therapy schools teach anatomy, physiology and avoiding injury by understanding contraindications and various medical conditions. It’s more than a foot massage, it’s your health and safety. You may get a deal, but if you have foot problems or other serious medical conditions, you should seek the care of a licensed massage therapist. The licenses should be displayed on the wall.
A great foot massage treats individual muscles, increases flexibility in the joints, reduces inflammation and improves circulation. Someone who is trained and skilled can create life-changing relief through a goal-oriented treatment that will be sure to knock your socks off! Don’t settle for any less!
Pro Tip: Get the most out of your foot massage by putting down your phone or tablet and relaxing your mind so you can fully enjoy the benefits of the massage. Also, don’t be afraid to communicate openly with your Massage Therapist during the session. It is always okay to tell your therapist if something hurts during any point in the treatment.
Sandy Saldano, Lic. Massage Therapist
Owner of Therapeutic Kneads, Ltd.