(Not related to Newman's Natural Therapies - But as part of a groupon offer I regretfully purchased in the aid of research - & very enlightening it was too!)
Firstly - If you are ever uncomfortable at all during a massage then it is important to speak up and let your therapist know she needs to adapt the pressure! Massage should be relaxing and in the case of deep tissue or Swedish massage - should ease muscular tension.
Before a massage the Therapist should prepare you for how the massage is going to be laid out so that you are familiar and comfortable with what areas will be worked and in what order. They should also check with you how firm the pressure you prefer to be used & if you are comfortable with the temperature of the room.
Also, before the massage begins, the therapist should ensure the height of the massage table is at a comfortable level for them to work on you with - It is very unprofessional to start a massage and have to stop to adapt the height of the bed - This should never happen!
Massage should NEVER be performed over the spine, kidneys or particularly bony areas. It is a way of easing Muscular tension and no amount of kneading bones will help this - & in fact could do more damage to the bones and nerves.
A therapist should NEVER leave her phone on during the treatment! They should also encourage you to switch yours off for full relaxation benefits.
When applying oil at the start of the massage, your therapist should ensure she uses enough to start with - If she has under judged the amount of oil required then the friction during the massage will result in discomfort - If you feel that the massage is pulling on your skin - speak up!
When using Hot Stones during a massage Your therapist should check with you that the temperature is ok - If you feel it is too hot or too cold - then speak up! They should also change the stones regularly throughout the massage and not continue using a stone that has cooled during the treatment.
Hot stone massage is the only exception to the rule where a Therapist should remove her hands during the treatment (Other than the initial adjusting of towels). This is called "The Therapeutic touch" and allows the client to feel safe and looked after. This is different during a Hot stone massage due to the need for replacing cooled stones with warm ones - but for no other reason should a therapist leave the bed (In my case today the therapist went off for approximately two minutes - presumably to answer her text messages she had been receiving during the earlier part of my treatment!)
The therapist may use her body strength to manipulate the muscles - ie - adapting the massage depth and strength by using her arms to stretch muscles out - She should NEVER lean on you with her full body weight whilst she stretches over to get more oil (As aside from anything else, there should have been enough oil to begin with!)
I am sure there are numerous other "dont's" - these are just some of the ones I experienced with the therapist today - Please speak up during a treatment if you are uncomfortable at any time as a bad massage can cause more problems than it solves!
If anyone else has had a bad experience of massage and would like to share then I would welcome your comments - Also - If there are any other therapists reading this and have anything to add then that would be great!