Do you have an extravagant date night planned for you and your partner? Or maybe you just want to display how much you care for someone?
Obviously, this a no-brainer. Give your partner a massage!
A massage is a great way to display affection and intentionality to your partner. Giving your partner the best massage possible can be fun and enjoyable for both of you.
But where do you begin?
Don’t stress. We’re here to help you discover a few tips and tricks for giving the best massage possible.
Let’s get into it!
Setting Up the Set Up
Whether at a professional spa or during an in-home DIY rubdown, your partner will feel loved when receiving a massage. But if you choose to do this, you have to do it well. A bad massage can ruin a night, whereas a great massage can prompt the perfect evening!
One of the most important aspects of administering the best massage is prioritizing the atmosphere in which you’re giving the massage.
Think about every massage you’ve ever gotten. What was the room like? Dimly lit, with essential oils diffusing in the corner and soft music playing in the background?
That ambiance is exactly what you’ll want to go for as you give your partner a massage.
You want them to feel relaxed from the moment they find out they’re getting a massage to the very end of the massage. When you’re wondering how you should set up the intended space, think about your partners five senses.
You want the room to smell good. Everything they touch should feel good. Everything they see needs to be aesthetically pleasing.
What they hear should help them relax. What they taste (if anything) should be geared toward their preference.
Where to Give the Best Massage
While your first inkling may be to give your partner their massage on a bed, this would actually be wrong.
When giving a massage it is important for their spine to be stable and aligned with the surface on which they’re laying. If you give a massage on a bed, due to the springs and bounciness of the bed, their spine will concave and cause more harm.
In a comfortable spot, lay down a blanket or yoga mat. Have your partner lay down on the area with their head facing either the left or right side. Encourage them to face whichever direction feels the most natural.
Another important thing to keep in mind is that in the middle of the massage to have your partner switch directions to avoid a ‘stiff neck’.
Take it From the Top
The muscles toward the top of the spine are what provide the most support, which means that these muscles need the most relief.
Most people know the typical “massage” form that consists of both hands grabbing the shoulders from behind and pushing their thumbs into the back. This is a great first place to start but in order to do this correctly, you need to maintain a slow and steady pace.
You can gradually increase the intensity of pressure you use on this area, as it may have the most noticeable knots. Use an oil and massage it into their shoulders. If you notice your hands getting tired, feel free to use your forearms.
The Middle (Man)
Once you’ve taken care of the shoulders, make your way toward the middle of the back.
Start at the top of the spine and place both hands evenly along the back. Slowly begin to work your way down the back with the oil, switching back and forth between a kneading and circular motion.
During this portion of the massage, you may also notice predominant knots. If you run your hands down the spine and feel tension build-up, take your thumb and press into these areas in a small, circular motion.
Circular motions are important while giving the best massage because it increases blood flow, allows more oxygen to the brain and breaks up the tension. Having these ‘trigger points’ is called myofascial tension.
Usually, the cause of these ‘trigger points’ is overuse of the muscles. The overworking of these muscles means they’ll probably need more attention.
How Low Can You Go?
When you think of back pain, you probably immediately think of your lower back.
The lower back is actually constructed to be a bit tighter than the rest of your back. This is to support and hold you up. Just because they’re meant to be tighter, doesn’t mean they don’t get to experience some massage action.
It is best to divide this part of the back up into two sections, the left and the right.
While straddling your partner’s hips, place your hands one on top of the other, with fingers facing outward. Lean into your hands using your body weight and press your hands outward. This movement will release tension and drive it away from your partner’s spine.
Do this movement on both sides of your partner’s back.
Now the Other Stuff
It wouldn’t be the best massage ever if you didn’t take care of your partner’s legs, arms, neck and head.
When it comes to legs, it is important to start from the ankles and move up. The leg muscles can take a lot of pressure so don’t be afraid to work these muscles well.
Continue up the legs in a circular and compressing fashion. Once you feel like you’ve taken care of the legs, make sure not to forget the feet.
You can tell a lot about someone based on their feet. You can also tell where they hold a lot of their stress. One at a time, take a foot and hold the foot in your hands.
Starting at the heel, take both thumbs and apply pressure down the mid-line of the foot. This would also be a good time to bend your partner’s foot upward and do slow and steady rotations of the ankle.
When you’re ready to move onto the arms, similar to the feet, take one arm at a time and start from the inside of the arm.
Place both hands around the arm and with your thumb apply pressure to the mid-line of the arm. Pull toward you and repeat. Think of pulling the stress away from them through their arms.
The hands come next. Take their hand palm up and begin to pull, starting from the middle of the palm, out toward the end of each finger. Repeat this step several times, on both hands, to achieve optimal stress relief.
Like the foot, this would be a good time to gently rotate the wrist for increased mobility and blood flow.
Have your partner turn over and lay their head in your lap. Since your head is at the top of your spine, it only makes sense that there is tension trapped in the neck and head.
Have your partner close their eyes and take deep, evenly spaced breaths. If available, this would be the ideal time to take a warm towel, doused in essential oils and place it over their face.
With both hands on each side of their neck, apply even pressure amongst each finger and pull toward the top of their head. Do this several times and be mindful of the position of their head.
There You Have It!
If you follow these steps, you and your partner will both reap the benefits of intentional intimacy and relaxation.
So whether you’re trying to decide what to get them for their birthday or you just want to display your love and affection, a massage is a great avenue to do it.
So break out your essential oils and candles and get to work!