Therapeutic massage seeks to give attention to the muscles, tendons, and tissues deep under your skin to relieve pain and increase circulation in the body. When was the last time you were completely connected to your body and how it was responding, besides to feel pain? Granted, pain, is the body’s natural response and many times is a warning of something that is happening. BUT, sometimes, pain can be good.
An example would be: You start going to the gym to work out (not too hard) and after several days you feel the DOMS, Delayed Onset Muscle Syndrome. It is the muscles’ natural response to being worked after being left sedentary for some time. That pain you are feeling is your body saying “Don’t wait that long to work out, EVER AGAIN!” (Remember to ease into working out if it’s been awhile.)
Another example of a “good pain” is when you get a massage. Massage therapists use the terms “good pain” and a “bad pain”. They like it when a patient says, “it’s a good hurt,” because we are breaking down the knots (technical terminology: stripping nodules in the muscle fibers).
Therapeutic massage techniques allow your muscles to reshape and heal themselves. When your massage therapist asks “how’s that pressure” and you respond with “good,” but you are actually thinking “I think I am going to be pushed right through the table,”—that would be an example of pressure that may be too much. The term massage therapists use for that scenario would be a “bad pain.” If your muscles are fighting the massage therapist it actually may be doing more harm than good. Tell your massage therapist to lighten the pressure—it’s ok, they don’t have to break down every muscle fiber all in one session.