Many times people ask questions like, “Should I feel pain/soreness after my massage?” or “Is it normal to have bruises the next day after being massaged?” And depending on the person asked there are many mixed answers to those questions. Some people may answer with, “You should never feel any pain from a massage!” or the opposite, “Soreness is just caused by knots being broken down, which is the purpose of a massage.” So what to believe with all these mixed reviews? Just be logical.
Some people just bruise easily, plain and simple. It maybe lack of iron or lack of other vitamins in the body that are really causing bruising but even with the smallest pressure they may see a slight welt. This is not because the therapist hurt them in any way; it’s just their bodies’ natural reaction to the breaking down of tissues in the skin. If, for example, you’re getting a massage to relieve a pinched nerve, then naturally you may feel some pain. Some people may have no visible reaction while others may have a bruise or swelling. A Swedish Massage or another lighter pressure massage would be the best choice for someone that knows they are sensitive and bruise easily, as opposed to a Deep Tissue massage which would be a very firm pressure and may cause abrasions on someone with sensitive tendencies.
Some people have thicker skin and rarely bruise. These people will most likely see no visible reaction but may be slightly sore from a firm pressure massage. Soreness from a massage generally should not last longer than 2 or 3 days. Just like after a hard workout, the body feels the strain in the muscles. It happens the same way after being massaged but tension in the muscles and knots are being released instead of built up like when exercising. All in all, the soreness or bruising after a massage depends on the person and knowing their own body and what is right or wrong.
So the next time you feel a bruise or soreness after the massage, don’t automatically blame the massage or the therapist. Unless the therapist is new, they’ve probably massaged hundreds of people before you with no pain or bruising. If you feel the massage is too strong for you, go with a lighter pressure massage. If you’re really convinced that the therapist is to blame, check out our guides on massage parlor secrets and dirty massage parlors exposed to determine if the one you went to is illegitimate.