Holistic Beauty Treatments
The following is addressed to therapists in regard to working with minors, either in a spa setting or beauty center.
To begin with, I am pro-massage all the way: starting with my own experience in receiving a treatment which felt as if stepping on clouds rather than walking, to scientific research into touch therapies its plentiful proof therapeutic touch keeps us healthy from all points of view.
However, there are few aspects to be considered more carefully when offering complementary therapies, especially massage to young people; as I mentioned before this is due to the fact they are crossing the bridge of childhood going into adulthood. Being an adolescent is not easy and considering society’s aversion to touch and nudity we have to realise we walking on thin ice when putting all these together.
Some places have well set laws, and spas and beauty centers know how to deal with such issues by having signed a parent consent form and well trained therapists with experience and qualification on working on these people. As a matter of fact, there are education concepts that after one complete basic massage or reflexology course would continue thereafter with professional development courses, to teach therapists further as in regard to specific techniques for different categories of age, and also conditions. There will be a specific course for baby massage course, pregnancy massage, reflexology for neurological conditions, Abdomen Maya Massage to be able to learn techniques for infertility or digestive problems, and courses to teach geriatric massage, and the list goes on.
It happens in a course of 4 years, I did not offer treatment to anyone under 18, and only in a span of a month we had few young girls coming with their parents at the spa. To some, I offered treatments when the mother was in the room either having herself a treatment or just being present, but also mothers who refused my offer to stay in the treatment room. Now thinking back, I feel I could have chosen a better solution for the girl and for myself as a therapist too.
Many basic massage courses lack plenty of aspects when comes to train future therapists, not only in providing the massage techniques, but also information about ethics, etiquette and protecting client’s intimacy all the way throughout their treatment, but also they fail to mention in reality we will deal with loads of people who would need to be educated. This education is about what massage can offer to them starting with healthy development in babies all the way to relaxation, stress relief and compassionate touch which is so beneficial for the elderly. None of these are mentioned and many of us will have to have the willingness to rediscover our profession.
With the new generation of people, I feel is all in place. It is really delivering them the treatment while fully prepared to receive and rip the benefits at maximum.
I wrote below few guidelines for therapists when working with minors (and please add to this list if I missed something).
Keep well and good practice!
Iuliana Simion, therapist Eden Spa Sibiu