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Nightmare massage client? Here's when you need to fire them.

September 05, 2019

Building up your massage therapy business takes hard work, determination and dedication. Filling up your books with clients is no easy task and so when we encounter a nightmare client we can feel reluctant to fire them but if the massage client you dread seeing ticks any of these boxes, it's time to give them the boot.

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What is your self imposed dress code?

What is your self imposed dress code?

August 09, 2019

Starting your career as a massage therapist without a defined uniform it's tricky to know what to wear. Is it even necessary to have a uniform? We looked into the different options chosen by fellow massage therapists to provide some inspiration and guidance so you can find a uniform that is a perfect fit for you!

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You know you are a massage therapist when...

You know you are a massage therapist when...

July 18, 2019

In every career there are those little idiosyncrasies that bring a smile to those in the know!  I bet as you go through your day as a massage therapist there are loads of points where something happens that makes you smile that only another therapist would understand!

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Pretty young blonde woman having a massage from a female massage therapist

How much break time do massage therapists need between clients to avoid burnout?

July 14, 2019

When running your own massage therapy business it can be tempting to you over schedule yourself in attempts to please clients and to make hay whilst the sun shines. However back to back massages will take their toll on your body and your wellbeing. Which in turn can lead to more work and more stress when you are trying to repair a bad reputation. So how much time should you allow for breaks without your schedule turning into a massage marathon?


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Female client lies on a massage table receiving a massage treatment from a female therapist

The hardest lessons you'll learn being a Massage Therapist

July 03, 2019

Are you a new therapist looking to set up your own massage therapy business? 
Have you been running your own clinic for a while but feel like you are constantly fielding issues? We asked a number of established massage therapists what was the hardest lesson they learnt along the way and some of the answers might sound familiar...

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Cropped shot of chiropractor massaging back of patient that lying on massage table in hospital

9 tips to extend your career in massage therapy.

June 20, 2019

A career as a massage therapist can take its toll. So how can you reduce the strain on your body whilst still delivering fantastic treatments? And when you're completely worn out how can you stay in the industry? Below we share 9 tips to extend your career in massage therapy and keep doing what you love for longer!

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What are the best exercises for massage therapists?

What are the best exercises for massage therapists?

April 25, 2019

As we all know, working as a massage therapist can take its toll on your body! To help, we have taken the most commonly reported aches and pains from massage therapists and found some exercises, stretches and solutions so you can lengthen your career as a massage therapist and give yourself some much-needed relief.

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close up of a young woman receiving a massage from a female massage therapist

Why massage therapists need regular massages

February 20, 2019

As massage therapists, we are always trying to persuade people that massage is an ongoing method to take care of your body and not a one-off treat! So why as massage therapists would we not regularly get treatments ourselves?

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Clear speech bubbles from national survey

The National Massage Therapist Survey 2019

February 14, 2019

With the start of a new year, gradually disappearing from view, we wanted to know what are the challenges therapists are facing right now. We asked 125 therapists to tell us the biggest challenge for their massage therapy business this year and the answers were pretty interesting...

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Young female massage therapist massaging a young lady laying on a massage table

The true cost of your massage treatment

January 31, 2019

When we first read Shawn Kitzman’s blog post, we loved his no-nonsense approach to spelling out What Actually Goes Into The Cost Of A Massage. We wanted to create a version for our UK audience so next time you hear people complaining you can demonstrate exactly what it takes to deliver their massage treatment!

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female massage therapist writing down notes whilst speaking to client on massage table

Why it's important to be your clients' massage therapist and not their counsellor

January 23, 2019

Over time the trust developed with between massage therapists and their clients is enormous. Massage therapists' work often helps to relieve the stress and negative emotions clients carry with them, but it can be easy for the conversation to spill into topics more commonly seen in a counsellors office. 

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Two empty massage tables overlooking lush tropical forest

Cultural crossed-wires: Comical or Cringe-worthy?

June 24, 2016

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Massage Table Size Guide

Massage tables comes in many different shapes and size. It can be confusing for you, the customer, to choose the right one but we are here to help!

A lot of customers call us up after they have bought the wrong size massage table elsewhere and we would like to help you avoid this mistake. It normally goes something like this; they like the look of a picture of a massage table on a website, they like the low price and then they check the carrying weight is ok. If the carrying weight fits their needs they click add to cart and the new massage table turns up at their doorstep in a few days. They unfortunately assume all massage tables are pretty much the same width and size.

The standard size of a massage table is 28 inches wide (71cms) and 73 inches (185cms) long. One of the reasons many "lightweight" budget massage tables are so cheap is because

  1.  They are smaller in size (normally around 61cms wide) and as such have less materials
  2. They are sold by specialist retailers who also sell anything else they can import and turn a profit on. As such they just buy the cheapest massage tables they can find in China. They go for smaller sizes as they are cheaper.

Make sure the massage table is the right size for you and your clients as the narrow massage tables at 61cms can be very uncomfortable for anyone who isn't petite and many clients cannot relax with their shoulders and arms unsupported.


The Width of the Massage Table:

Almost all therapists choose the standard 28 inch wide massage table. All our massage tables are the same length so it is only the width and shape our customers need to decide on.

Your massage table should be wide enough to cater for the wide variety of shapes and sizes of your clients. It needs to be wide enough to comfortably accommodate your treatment style, while being narrow enough to ensure you don’t have to strain your own back during treatments.

Each therapist's postural training and ability is different, so only you will know what massage table width you can handle. We have spoken to therapists who are five feet tall and get the wider 30 inch massage tables, and we speak to six foot therapists who have back problems and go for a 25 inch wide massage table. Everyone is different.

Generally speaking, if you are of smaller stature, you may do better with one of the narrower 25-inch massage tables. If you're quite tall, or are particularly keen to offer your clients a very spacious experience, a 30-inch massage table might be more suitable.

If you are in doubt, see if you can go into your local training college and see whether the massage tables there suit you. However, there is another way to get a feel for what will work of you don’t have access to a couch when you are deciding:

Cut out a piece of cardboard to the dimensions of both sizes you are deciding between. Put it on top of the kitchen table and lean over it. Visualise a client lying there, and see which width will suit you and your client best.

measuring the width of a massage table

Make sure you can get close enough to the table that you can pivot at the waist and have your shoulders squared to the clients hips, with your hands parallel to the clients' spine. Working in this position will ensure an injury-free career, so it's an important factor in your decision.

The most popular massage table widths are 28 and 30 inches. We sell 25-inch massage tables but you should really only choose this width if you are shorter in height and having a wider massage table might put your own back at risk over the course of your career.

You can also choose the 25-inch if you want to have the lightest massage table possible. By reducing the width of the massage table, the weight is also reduced. Now, this can mean a trade-off of some client comfort, but this trade is often worthwhile if you are a fully mobile therapist and use public transport frequently, where saving a kilogram or two will make a difference to you over time.


The Height Of the Massage Table

Nowadays, almost all portable massage tables come with height adjustable legs. Whichever massage table you choose should come with a large height range to accommodate you, and to cater for a broad range of therapies.

A common height range of massage tables is between 60 to 80cm, and this height range should cater for everyone. To check which height you need your massage table to be at follow this rule of thumb:

1. Stand up straight with your hands by your sides. Clench your fists.
2. Measure the distance between the floor and your knuckles
3. This distance should equal the height of your massage table.
4. Add a few inches in height to allow for the body of the patient on the massage table.

The height of a massage table is usually only adjusted when different therapists are using the same massage table, or if you have a client that is outside the average size you normally treat. So for example, if someone with a lot of body depth comes for a treatment after an average size person, you may need to adjust the height a notch or two.

You should be able to adjust the height of a massage table in just 2-3 minutes. Even though you mightn't adjust the height very often, the faster the better when you do have to!

There are 2 types of height adjustment mechanisms found on modern massage tables.

1) Twisting knobs (found only on wooden massage tables):

If you are working with a wooden massage table, it is better to have two knobs on each of the four legs for greater strength and reliability. When buying online, make sure to check how many knobs are on the legs. Cheap massage tables often only have one knob, and when you raise the legs to the highest heights they are less stable and have been known to snap.

2) Telescopic push-buttons (found only on aluminium massage tables):

The mechanism to adjust the height of an aluminium massage table is much the same as the push-button method on aluminium crutches. It only takes a few seconds to adjust each leg, and the mechanism is very reliable. Check out the video to see how it’s done.


Massage Table Shape:

The following are the different shapes of massage tables on the market.

1. Rectangle shaped with square corners 

This is the traditional shape of a massage table and the one you are probably familiar with seeing. Our Combi-lite 3 in 1 and Affinity Portaflex are shaped like this.

2. Rectangle shaped with rounded corners

Same as no 1 above in every way except the corners are rounded. Does not affect function in any way, just a different design/look.


3. Hour glass shaped with gradual gradient 

A fabulous massage table innovation in recent years, which solves a lot of the problems around choosing the correct width is the hourglass shaped massage table.

This style of massage table is wider at the ends, and tapers somewhat at the middle. This provide a spacious and comfortable experience for your client (as the shoulder and feet area are 30 inches wide) without compromising your own posture and health, as the middle of the couch where you lean over is a much narrower 26 inches wide.Having recently upgraded to one of these hourglass massage tables myself, I can vouch that my working days are much more comfortable, and many of my clients have commented on the extra comfort from the wider shoulder area.


4. Hour glass shaped with sharp gradient
Same as point above but instead of the it gradually going from wide to narrow, the massage table changes quickly from normal width to narrow width so people of very short stature can get in close.
5. Oval Shaped

 The name says it all! There are no corners on the massage table. Therapists normally choose this for one of two reasons. They simply like the look of this massage table and it is aesthetically more pleasing in their treatment room and/or they find it easier to move around the massage table during the treatment without having to side step the corners. This is particularly handy when space is limited in your treatment room.

oval massage table


Have any questions or comments about anything above? Please let us know in the comments below!