When it comes to spas and massage, you’re probably not thinking about hot stone massages as one of the most popular services they offer. But it has been gaining popularity in recent years with many people claiming that it helps them relax, clear their minds, and even lose weight.
If you’ve never tried one before, it might be time to give it a shot! Here are ten simple steps to help you understand how to use hot stone massage oil so that you get the full experience of what this type of treatment can do for your body and mind.
1) Pick the right stones
The size and shape of your hot stones will determine how you use them in a massage, so make sure you choose stones that are not too small for your hands or too large for your client.
For example, if you have very small hands, you might want smaller stones; alternatively, if you tend to be rough with your massages, larger stones might be safer.
If possible, touch some different rocks before making a decision about which ones to use—you’ll know instantly whether they’re right for massage. They should feel warm when touched and not overly heavy. If they do not meet these requirements, do not buy them.
Hot stone therapy should be relaxing and enjoyable for both you and your client; picking out bad rocks is no way to start an experience like that!
2) Get your massage oil ready
When your massage oil is warm and ready, set up your massage table with a couple towels. Have two large bath towels folded on top of each other as well as one or two smaller, flatter towels for underneath you.
Whether or not you are having a hot stone massage, apply oil to your hands, which will keep them from sticking on any of your skin.
Once you have finished applying oil to yourself, move onto using it on your client by pouring some into one hand at a time and applying it directly over their shoulders and back while they lay face down on their stomach.
Start with one side of their body at a time until it is completely covered in oil before moving onto another area such as their arms or legs.
3) Heat it up with a candle
Before you get started, set out a candle and make sure it’s lit. Turn off any fans or A/C units in your massage room, because even a gentle breeze can cool down your hot stones too quickly. (Similarly, avoid extremely hot days.)
Place a towel over your client’s back: Most massages take place on either a massage table or bed. Before you start, fold up an old towel and set it on top of whatever surface you’ll be using for your massage.
The towel will help protect against accidental burns from hot stones! And don’t forget to check that it’s secure before starting; nothing is worse than falling halfway through!
4) Gather your items
The basic tools you’ll need for a hot stone massage are stones, oil and towels. Stones can be plain smooth river rocks or special massage stones, like lava or basalt; whatever you have around your house is fine.
If you do go out and buy stones, it’s easiest to find them at places that sell landscaping items, like Home Depot. Then just put your chosen stones in a pan of boiling water for about 15 minutes and let them cool before use.
The oil you choose should be edible and not overly fragrant; coconut oil is ideal if it’s solid at room temperature (it will melt with your client). You also need towels, which can either be large bath sheets or blankets that don’t shed threads or lint.
5) Set a soothing music (optional)
Music can be incredibly powerful, often having a more significant impact on us than we realize. So why not play some of your favorite songs and add an extra level of relaxation to your massage?
As a bonus, you can have friends and family relax with their own personalized playlists during your treatment, too. So crank up some peaceful tunes or throw on some relaxing acoustic numbers—it’s all about what works for you!
6) Start by using warm stones
Using warm stones is one of our favorite tricks for getting in deep and working out those knots. When you put hot rocks on muscle tissue, it expands, allowing you more room to work with.
Plus, your muscles will be more receptive and relaxed. Think of it as a free massage – now that’s something everyone can appreciate! Here’s how we recommend heating your stones: Rinse them in hot water for 30 seconds, then place them in a bowl or cup of scalding hot water for about 20 minutes (or heat them in a microwave for two minutes).
Once they’re nice and steamy, wrap each stone with a towel before setting on body part; otherwise, they may burn your client!
7) Move to cold stones for a deeper massage experience
Once you’ve tried hot stones, it’s hard to give them up. They’re incredible for providing relaxing warmth during a massage, which can trigger your body’s natural stress-relieving chemicals and even aid circulation.
If your skin is very sensitive or prone to burning, don’t let that scare you away from hot stone massages—the stones are heated to just over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (about as warm as a cup of tea), so they won’t be too hot.
A good rule of thumb is that if you can put a towel between yourself and an object, it’s usually safe enough for use in massage oil. But always check with your provider before getting started on a session with hot stones!
8) Add pressure as needed (to relieve pain, etc.)
A professional massage therapist will know what points of your body need more pressure and which are fine with less. As a first-time hot stone massage giver, start with light or medium pressure for most of your strokes.
Then, if needed, increase your pressure depending on how you’re receiving feedback from your recipient. If she says she wants more pressure or if it feels like she needs something extra in a particular area, then by all means give her what she needs!
Just use caution so that you don’t hurt her—it’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to giving massages.
9) Ask questions if you need help from your masseuse
It’s important to communicate with your masseuse during a hot stone massage. She can help you determine if pressure is too much or not enough, and if there are any areas that need more attention.
A professional will know what kind of pressure will feel best for your body and will be able to adjust accordingly as needed. Never hesitate to ask questions!
The hot stone massage is a niche massage therapy that uses smooth, heated rocks placed on specific areas of your body.
The combination of hot and cold can produce major benefits for your health, with soothing effects and mild muscle stimulation—without any pain! If you want to try out hot stone massage but are a little intimidated by it, we’ve got some helpful tips that will help you get started.
You’ll discover why these heated stones are such an effective way to give yourself an unforgettable and relaxing treatment.