Whether you’re setting up your own massage business or getting started with massage at home, you’ll need the right equipment and supplies!
Massage equipment is a necessary expense for all massage therapists. It doesn’t matter if you’re working from a practice or from home, you need to make sure you and your clients are getting the most out of your massage experience. This includes investing in safe and comfortable equipment. While massage therapy doesn’t require too much equipment to get started, there are a few must-haves in order to get things going.
From massage chairs to hygiene supplies, here are some necessary equipment you’ll need to get started in massage therapy.
A quality massage table is essential for any serious massage therapist. It’s the one item without which you can’t practice as a massage therapist.When choosing a massage table, always look for one that is sturdy, has soft and comfortable upholstery that can be easily cleaned, is height adjustable, and is not too heavy or cumbersome to move around. Lightweight wooden tables with an adjustable face cradle, armrests and width extensions, such as those on the Flexaone Massage Table, gives you the freedom to accommodate different clients.
Whether you’re working from home, as a mobile therapist or from a working practice, you should consider investing in both a portable massage table and a stationary massage table. Having a portable table on standby gives you the freedom to pick up and take your massage table to at-home clients or clients outside of work hours. A portable table is also a flexible option for therapists working in small spaces. For mobile massage therapists, a portable massage table is a necessity!
Don’t compromise quality for price when purchasing a massage table. The higher the quality, the better the chance that it’s going to be safe, comfortable and durable enough to last a very long time.
Massage linens are integral for client comfort and hygiene. Towels can be used to cover the client as well as to get rid of any oil or lotion residue left on the skin. Don’t be afraid to invest in quality towels as the difference between course & scratchy and soft & plush can change the entire massage experience!
You’ll also need to buy a few sheet sets that include a fitted and flat sheet as well as a soft blanket to put on top of the massage table. A face cradle cover will also be needed. When you’re looking for linens, make sure you choose ones that are not only soft but also machine washable (since you’ll be washing them a lot!).
Some therapists may also wish to invest in a massage table cover or warmer to accommodate clients who get cold easily or to use during the winter months. This is an added luxury that, while not necessary, helps to further the experience of your clients and have them wanting to come back for more!
Oils, lotions, creams
Lubricants such as massage oils, lotions and creams can be useful for massage therapists and should be part of your massage supply shopping list. Not only do they help with friction, making it easier to glide your hands over the client, they can also be used for their holistic and relaxation benefits.
Look for a massage oil that is hydrating and of good quality. High-quality massage oils are longer-lasting, non-greasy, and non-staining. Water-based lubricants are best for washing. For people with sensitive skin, you’ll want to choose a non-allergenic product to avoid irritation. Ideally, when choosing your lubricants, opt for hypoallergenic and organic, natural products. Be mindful of nut-based essential oils, as they can be considered an allergen and should not be used on clients with allergies or sensitivities
A high-quality, durable massage bolster helps improve your access and gives your clients support when they need it. Bolsters are also extremely helpful when aligning a client’s vertebrae and accommodating their head, neck, or back due to injury or discomfort.
Bolsters come in different shapes and sizes, but one of the best and most versatile shapes to have is a half-round shape with a flat base.
As well as a bolster, you should also have a supply of bolster covers on hand so you can quickly change them between clients. Choose a comfortable texture such as terry towelling or a waterproof cover for easy cleaning.
For the most part, you can get away with just a massage table when practising massage therapy. However, one of the best parts about being a massage therapist is the ability to put your client at ease. You can do this by choosing a range of ambient items that can help induce relaxation and create a safe, welcoming space for clients to step into.
- Music: Soothing music or nature sounds can help put clients in the right mindset and ease them into relaxation quicker. Whether from your Spotify playlist or CD, choose music without lyrics other than some slight chanting.
- Speaker: Invest in a simple portable music player or Bluetooth speaker so that you can take your music with you when visiting clients.
- Candles: Scented candles can create a whole sensory experience for both you and your client. Choose aromatherapy candles that have a long burn time. Consider local and ethically sourced candles that are non-toxic and free from crude ingredients such as oil by-products, synthetic fragrances, and artificial colours.
Cost vs quality
The costs associated with starting your own massage business can be daunting. There are several one-time purchase items that will require a substantial initial investment. However, the best thing about running a massage business is that you can prioritize what you buy; purchasing the basic necessities first. If you have limited funds, you can start with a high-quality massage table as this will be the foundation of your business. It’s important not to skimp on quality here. While there are some items you can do away with buying on a budget, equipment related to client safety, comfort and health should always be of the most stringent quality.
While it may seem like a big investment, choosing better quality products will work to enhance your client’s experience and increase the likelihood of them returning. From there, your investment will pay for itself!
Get the right professional massage equipment
Having the right equipment and supplies is vital for massage therapists. Not only does it help to improve your ability to give the proper treatment, but it also helps the client to feel safe, comfortable and relaxed. When a client walks into a massage business, they’re expecting to be in good hands (literally!). You need to make sure you’re providing this by creating a space that is inviting and conducive to a great experience. When you have the right equipment, you’ll empower yourself to deliver a great massage, ensuring you end up with happier, more satisfied clients.
Discover Massage Australia is a recognised massage training provider and has provided training to thousands of professional graduates. Shop our massage products to enhance your massage practice, or check out our range of massage courses to kickstart your career.