Sample Protocol Back and Leg Massage

Sample Protocol Manual: Sylvan Spa
Back Massage Protocol
1. Have the client receiving the massage lie on her belly (face down) on a treatment table. The
table should be at an appropriate height so not to strain your back.
2. Stand by the client’s right side. Place one hand on the lower back and one hand between the
shoulder blades. Rock gently side to side.
3. Warm up the back by applying thumb pressure along both sides of the spine simultaneously:
Start at the lower back and knead gently with your thumbs up to the neck area. This will also
promote relaxation.
4. Use effleurage to apply the massage oil. In one long stroke, slide your palms down either side
of the spine to the pelvis; scoop laterally out around the hips and back up the sides to the
shoulders. Maintain contact with the back.
5. Continue up both sides of the neck to the base of the head. Circle at the occipital ridge.
6. Start at the spine and slide your palms in opposite directions outward to the sides of the back,
starting with the lower back area and moving up to the shoulders.
7. Knead the fleshy muscular areas at the top of the shoulders, the mid-back area and the
buttocks to loosen tight muscles and fascia (the connective tissue).
8. Use your thumbs or fingers to apply pressure to areas that feel hard or tight to loosen any
constrictions, often called knots.
9. Perform clockwise circular friction with your fingertips along the muscles that are close to the
spine and around the shoulder blades.
10. Rotate the arms gently, one at a time, to loosen the shoulder joints and enhance blood flow.
Leg Massage Protocol
1. Begin your Swedish leg massage with your client face up on the table. Warm up the muscles of
the leg by applying a small amount of massage oil to your hands and kneading the leg muscles
with your hands.
2. Prepare your own body to begin working a bit deeper into the legs. You never want to work
with just your arms, rather take a wide stance, bend your knees and push from the legs and
hips, allowing your entire body to guide the force behind your hands. This will help protect
your lower back and conserve your energy.
3. Cup your hands around the client's ankle with your thumbs barely touching. Take extra care
not to massage directly over the shin bone, as it can be sensitive. Press gently with even
pressure along the length of your hands, as if you are trying to bring your palms together.
Begin to push up the leg.
4. Push all the way up the length of the leg, stopping your inner hand as it nears the groin and
allowing your outside hand to continue all the way to the upper thigh. When you reach the
thigh, turn both of your hands so that your finger point towards the table and gently slip your
fingers under the sides of the leg.
5. Keep your hands under the legs, cupping the muscles as your draw your hands back to the
ankles. Use a lifting pressure, just enough to massage the muscles, but not so much that you
pick the leg up off of the table. Repeat this Swedish massage technique on both legs, using
long, graceful sweeping motions.