The Goal of the Massage

When you book a massage in a spa setting, the goal is to relax and feel pampered. The session might take place in a private, dimly lit room with candles, aromatherapy, and meditative music. The ultimate goal is customer satisfaction and relaxation.

With massage therapy, there is a medical outcome in mind—to relieve back pain, improve circulation, treat headaches, or ease joint stiffness. You may receive a referral from your doctor, and your health insurance might cover some or all of your visits.

Massage Techniques

While all types of massage may feel similar to someone who hasn’t studied it, there are many different techniques used for specific purposes. Spa massage most often incorporates Swedish massage and deep tissue massage. There is nothing wrong with these techniques—in fact, they can be incredibly effective at relieving muscle tension.

However, with a more clinical focus from a massage therapist, you can gain access to a wide range of other healing modalities, including myofascial release, trigger point therapy, reflexology, and others. A knowledgeable massage therapist will implement the best techniques to treat your condition effectively.

Training & Credentials

A basic massage education can be obtained after about 500 hours of training. To work in a spa, a masseur or masseuse must obtain a license and carry liability insurance.

Qualifying to work as a massage therapist in a clinical setting requires additional education in pathology and kinesiology. Additional credentialing and continuing education hours are also needed.


When you receive periodic massages on vacation or for your birthday, you don’t expect any follow-up recommendations from your masseur or masseuse. You just want to treat yourself to a relaxing massage, lower your stress level, and feel pampered for a day.

However, if you’re visiting a massage therapist for ongoing treatment, you expect to receive follow-up advice and arrange your next visit to assess your progress at that time. Your treatments occur at regular intervals and may be paired with chiropractic care, physical therapy, or other rehab services designed to improve your body’s overall function.

Massage Therapy in New York

If you’re just looking to relax with an occasional massage, and you don’t have any underlying pain or discomfort, a spa massage could be right for you. However, if you want massage therapy services that target your trouble areas with thoughtful techniques from a clinical professional, choose medical massage at Manhattan Total Health in New York. Our massage therapists can administer therapeutic treatments in a skillful, practiced manner.

To learn more, or to schedule an appointment, please contact us today.

  • What to Expect from Your First Personal Training Session

    If you’re looking for a way to hold yourself more accountable for your fitness goals, working with a personal trainer might be right for you. These licensed professionals have in-depth knowledge of how the human body works and what you must do to reach your desired level of conditioning. With their guidance, you’ll be less likely to plateau, continually advancing to the next level of muscle gain or weight loss, depending on your goals.

    Ready to get started? Here’s a breakdown of what to expect from your first personal training session.

    Fill out Paperwork

    Be prepared to share your contact information, medical history, and current fitness level. Your complete honesty is important to ensure your trainer has all the needed information to help you get the most from your workouts. For the personal trainer’s protection, you may also need to fill out a waiver of liability, informed consent form, and contract.

    Assess Your Starting Fitness Level

    This may involve taking measurements across your body and recording your starting weight. You might feel self-conscious, but this is a vital step to help you track how far you have come when you look back a few months from now. You may also undergo a postural assessment, movement analysis, flexibility test, blood pressure reading, and cardio test to give the personal trainer a thorough baseline from which to measure your progress.

    Design Your Fitness Program

    Now comes the fun part! Tell your trainer your fitness goals to begin shaping a program that’s right for you. Try to have a few specific ideas in mind.

    For instance, you may want to lose 10 pounds, gain five pounds of muscle, lose three inches on your waistline, or lower your body fat percentage by two points. You might also want to master a new skill, such as doing 10 pull-ups or 20 push-ups, touching your toes, or running a mile in under 10 minutes. Or maybe you’re training for an event, such as a marathon, and you could use extra help to prepare. These are the kinds of things your personal trainer will customize your fitness program around.

    Discuss Nutrition

    To see rapid results from your workouts, you must put equal emphasis on your diet. Your personal trainer can point you in the direction of foods that will fuel your workouts, help you feel energized, and keep you healthy.

    Ask Questions

    If your trainer invites you to ask questions, feel free to bring up things such as, “How should I exercise on the days we don’t train together?” and “What’s a realistic pace for seeing results?” Once you start working out, ask, “How’s my form?” and “Where should I be feeling this exercise?” By following your trainer’s advice and having reasonable expectations, your relationship will get off to a good start.

    If you’re ready to feel your best with the help of a personal trainer in New York, please contact Manhattan Total Health and request your first personal training session today!

  • What Are the Risk Factors for Fibromyalgia?

    Fibromyalgia is a condition that causes chronic pain and fatigue. The condition is not well understood, but a growing body of research hints at the potential causes. If you have fibromyalgia, there is not a single treatment plant that works for everyone, so you will need to use trial and error to find the best fit for your needs. Many people benefit from a mix of treatments, including acupuncture, massage therapy, and chiropractic care. Could you be at risk of developing fibromyalgia? These are some of the potential risk factors, so you can be vigilant about the symptoms.

  • Family History of Fibromyalgia

    Fibromyalgia tends to run in families, so if you have a close relative who has been diagnosed, you have a chance of developing it as well. Although the exact mechanism is not yet clear, there is a chance that you could inherit genes that make you more sensitive to pain or more prone to other things, like depression, that are often associated with fibromyalgia. If you have a family history of the condition, be sure to let your doctor know, so he or she can monitor you for potential signs.

    Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

    Post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, seemed to be linked to fibromyalgia, though doctors are not sure of the exact connection. PTSD may cause a change in the way people respond to pain, or it may be a trigger for the onset of fibromyalgia. People who have suffered through emotional or physical abuse are also more likely to get fibromyalgia, even if they haven’t been diagnosed with PTSD.

    Other Health Conditions

    If you have another chronic disease or infection, then your chances of developing fibromyalgia are increased. Painful conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, are especially associated with fibromyalgia, and it can sometimes be difficult for sufferers to tell them apart.

    For more information about managing the pain of fibromyalgia without medications, call Manhattan Total Health. We offer a variety of services, including massage therapy and physical therapy in New York, NY. Make an appointment for a consultation by dialing (917) 636-4723.

  • What Are the Benefits of Good Posture?

    You were probably told over and over again in your childhood to stand up straight, but the reasons that good posture are important go far beyond just looking lively. As any chiropractor will tell you, the root of many health problems is the spine, and a healthy spine starts with good posture.

    Watch this video to learn more about the benefits of good posture. Being mindful of your posture will help you avoid chronic lower back pain, neck pain, and a wide range of systemic problems that can occur from spinal misalignments.

    If you’re not sure if your spine is healthy, visit a chiropractor at Manhattan Total Health. To make an appointment for chiropractic care in New York, NY, call (917) 636-4723.

  • Is Deep Tissue Massage Right for You?

    Deep tissue massage is different from other types of massage you may have experienced, such as Swedish massage. It uses a firm amount of pressure in order to reach deep muscle tissue and fascia. It can be very helpful for chronic pain, but it isn’t the right treatment for everyone. Your massage therapist will help you determine if it is the right technique for you.

  • During a deep tissue massage, your massage therapist will start out with light pressure and then gradually increase the intensity as your muscles warm up. It can be uncomfortable, especially when your therapist reaches areas that have scar tissue, but it shouldn’t be painful. It is normal to feel sore after a deep tissue massage, as if you’ve had an intense workout. This kind of massage is safe for most people, but it is not the right technique for everyone’s treatment goals, so discuss you needs with your massage therapist.

    For massage therapy in New York, NY, choose Manhattan Total Health. You can make an appointment by calling (917) 636-4723.

  • How to Talk about Chronic Pain with Your Doctor

    Dealing with chronic pain can be overwhelming. Part of the distress many patients have is feeling like their doctors do not truly understand their symptoms. Pain is subjective, and people have different levels of tolerance to different painful sensations, but conveying how you’re feeling to your doctor accurately will help him or her find the best treatments for you, from physical therapy to medical massage. When you see a doctor for your chronic pain, try these techniques for discussing your symptoms.

    Be Specific About the Sensations

    It isn’t enough to tell your doctor that you are in pain and where it hurts. Being specific about the kinds of pain you’re feeling will help your doctor decide what kinds of treatments can help you. For example, do you have burning, tingling pain or aching, throbbing pain? These symptoms suggest different conditions to your doctor, and they tend to respond to different kinds of treatment. If you’re experiencing different kinds of pain, go through each of your symptoms and when they occur to help your doctor get a complete picture.

    Talk About the Effects

    It is helpful to tell your doctor about the ways that your pain is affecting your life. What activities do you have to avoid now? Have you had to change the way you work or miss out on things that were important to you because you’re in too much pain? Are you dealing with depression or anxiety that is associated with your pain? This information will give your doctor some insight into how pain is controlling your life, so he or she can decide how aggressive your treatment should be.

    Explain the Things That You’ve Tried

    You can save time and frustration by telling your doctor the things you have tried to manage pain. By knowing what has provided some relief and what hasn’t, your doctor can make more informed decisions about how to move forward in treating your chronic pain.

    Manhattan Total Health offers a range of services to help people with chronic pain find symptom relief without medication, from medical massage and acupuncture to physical therapy and much more. Make an appointment with a physical therapist in New York NY or one of our other providers by calling (917) 636-4723.

  • How a Physiatrist Can Help with Chronic Pain Management

    A physiatrist, also known as a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician, can provide treatment for a variety of issues. They primarily focus on treating pain that results from chronic conditions, and they generally will provide treatment at any stage of life. If you go to a physiatrist, they will develop an individualized plan that will help you achieve lasting relief for your pain. These are some of the instances in which a physiatrist can help you:

    You have suffered a sports injury.
    If you’ve been injured while engaging in intense physical activity such as a sport, you may find yourself suffering from chronic pain afterward. A physiatrist can treat you in a holistic way that will take all your symptoms into account. Some of the common sports injuries a physiatrist can help with include concussions, stress fractures, and Achilles tendonitis.

    You are recovering from an operation.

    One of the most common services physiatrists provide is post-operative care. For example, if you have recently had an organ transplant, joint replacement, or rehabilitation after a heart attack, then a physiatrist can provide you with treatment for any complications. For instance, if you’re experiencing periodic pain, a physiatrist can develop a treatment plan for you.

    You have a musculoskeletal disorder.

    Physiatrists can also train to provide treatment for musculoskeletal disorders. For example, they can devise treatment to individuals who suffer from osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, or lower back pain. If you have a painful disorder that is affecting your ability to enjoy your life, then a physiatrist may be able to provide the help you’re looking for.

    Do you need help managing your pain? If you’re in need of effective pain relief in New York, NY, Manhattan Total Health can provide you with the treatments you need. From physical therapy to acupuncture, we offer a number of different approaches to pain relief. To find out more about the treatments we offer, call (888) 614-9257 today.

  • Tips for Living with Osteoarthritis

    Osteoarthritis can affect your life in numerous ways, but there are ways to alleviate the pain and stiffness that accompanies this common condition. Eating a balanced diet, keeping a healthy weight, and following a regular exercise routine can all help to reduce inflammation in your body. To get some additional tips for living well with osteoarthritis, watch this informative video clip.

    If you’re looking for the assistance you need with your osteoarthritis, it’s time to get in touch with Manhattan Total Health. We offer a wide array of pain relief treatments, including acupuncture and physiatry. To learn more about the services we provide in New York, NY, call (888) 614-9257.

  • Sciatica 101

    If you are one of the many Americans who suffers from sciatica, you may be wondering if you will ever find a treatment that works for you. In fact, there are ways to treat sciatica that will provide you with lasting relief. The key to treating sciatica is to understand what is causing it. Here is what you need to know about this widespread health issue.

  • What is sciatica?

    Sciatica refers to any kind of pain associated with the sciatic nerve, which is the long nerve that runs from your lower back down through each leg. In general, people with sciatica will experience pain or discomfort in their back, hips, and lower legs. In some cases, the symptoms of sciatica are mild; in others, they are so severe that walking can be painful.

    How is sciatica diagnosed?

    There are several ways to diagnose a case of sciatica. Your physician can do several tests in order to determine whether the pain is centered in the sciatic nerve. In some cases, an MRI scan may be done to help confirm the diagnosis. Once your physician has diagnosed the issue as sciatica, they will then decide what treatment will be most effective for you.

    How can sciatica be treated?

    The type of treatment that works best for sciatica depends on the individual case. In some cases, medications may be prescribed in order to treat the pain. For other patients, alternative treatments such as acupuncture or physical therapy may be more effective in relieving the symptoms of sciatica. After the treatment has started, your physician will check on your progress and determine how well it is working, and whether another approach is needed.

    Are you looking for an effective solution to your chronic pain? Manhattan Total Health offers physiatry and a wide array of other traditional and alternative treatments to individuals in New York, NY. Visit us today at one of our five locations for more information, or give us a call directly at (888) 614-9257 with your questions.

  • Are You a Good Candidate for Acupuncture?

    Acupuncture is a traditional form of Chinese medicine that is widely used to treat chronic pain and other health issues. If you’re curious about the potential of acupuncture for relieving your pain, you may be wondering if you’re well-suited for this treatment. If you have migraine headaches, lower back pain, and other pain issues that are detracting from your quality of life, then you may want to consider trying acupuncture. You might be a good candidate for acupuncture if you have already tried other pain relief treatments that have not worked for you. Many people also seek out acupuncture after a car accident or another traumatic event.

    Manhattan Total Health offers a variety of different treatments for pain relief, including acupuncture. We provide both traditional and alternative treatments at our five locations throughout New York, NY. If you have any questions about our services, feel free to contact us today at (888) 614-9257.