Frequently Asked Questions
Here we answer some of the questions you may have before coming for your massage treatment at Serenity Massage & Holistic Centre.
What is massage therapy?
Massage Therapy is the manipulation of the superficial and deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue, by using various techniques applied by a qualified massage therapist. Massage can enhance muscle function, aid the bodies healing process, increase the range of movement of joints, decrease muscle reflex action, reduce pain and aid relaxation.
Which type of massage should I book?
If you have general aches and pains, a Deep Tissue massage would be appropriate. For an injury, a Sports & Remedial massage can be more specific, and can also include stretches and home-care advice. For relaxation, a Swedish Massage is the most popular option, and can still be focused on the areas you would like to be worked on.
How often should I have massage?
This will depend on the level of tension you have.
Specific Tension, Pain Condition or Chronic Stress Plan
We recommend 1 session per week for 6 weeks
We re-assess at week 3 and if we are seeing results we will then lengthen the time between your treatments. If we are not seeing results we will change the treatment plan or refer you if appropriate. Once we have worked together to improve your tension we recommend moving on to our monthly maintenance plan. Book a Block of 5 and save ££’s on each session!
Tension Prevention and Health Maintenance Plan
If you have low level tension that is not causing any pain or discomfort. Having a massage as part of your health care routine, we recommend a massage every 4 weeks. We have a monthly membership plan that reminds you to come in for your massage. You can save ££’s by joining our membership!
What should I expect when I come in for my first appointment?
When you visit for the first time, your therapist will require you to fill out a confidential health history form. You will be asked some relevant questions to establish if there are specific issues you would like worked on, what you would like to achieve from the treatment, and if there are any conditions that need addressing, to ensure a massage treatment is appropriate for you. It is essential you list any health conditions, and any medication you may be taking, to ensure the therapist can adapt the treatment appropriately to your needs without doing any harm. It is also important to advise if you suffer from any allergies, to ensure we don’t use any oils that may cause a reaction.
Your therapist may also ask you to carry out some range of movement assessments and testing to evaluate your condition.
Your comfort is very important to us! We want to make your treatment as enjoyable as possible so you can get the most out of the treatment. If there is anything at all that is not quite right, for example: the room temperature; comfort/position on the bed; the pressure being applied; or even the music being played, please communicate this to your therapist so they can help.
How much does a treatment cost?
Each therapy is priced based upon the time, resources and techniques used, see our Therapy Price List page for prices on specific treatments. We do have discounts on block bookings – just ask your therapist!
Do you accept Health Insurance (HealthShield)?
You can often claim back the cost of your treatment if you are a member of HealthShield. Please see our HealthShield Health Insurance page for more information.
What is your Cancellation/Amendment Policy?
We require a minimum of 24 hours notice of change/cancellation or your deposit/voucher may be forfeit. Any subsequent changes to you appointment will require 48 hours notice, and if you change your appointment 3 times or more we may elect to cancel your appointment, at our sole discretion.
Why do you need to take my medical history?
This is very important to understand anything which might need focus or caution when carrying out your massage treatment. Massage Therapy is safe for the majority of people, however there are some instances where massage wouldn’t be suitable, or written permission may be required from your GP. The therapist will go through your medical history during the consultation process.
Do I have to undress for a Massage Treatment?
You will be advised by your therapist how far you would need to undress, if any, as it would differ depending on the treatment you are having. If you are not comfortable undressing to a particular level, then if required the treatment can be adapted – it is important to communicate this to your therapist before the start of your treatment!
You will be given privacy to undress and get yourself comfortable on the massage couch. You will also be covered by a sheet or towel during the massage, and only the area being worked on by the therapist will be uncovered.
I am pregnant. Can I be treated?
We have therapists available at Serenity who specialise in Pregnancy Massage. There are some things that need to be taken into consideration before booking:
*For most therapists, you must be at least 12 weeks pregnant to have massage or most other treatments, including reflexology. There is no data saying that treatments are harmful before this time, however this rule is typical in the industry. Most therapists also require you to have had your booking/dating scan, and been assured that all is well. Please check with the individual therapist before booking if you have not yet had this.
*You must not have any problems with high or unstable blood pressure.
*There must be no history of bleeding in any previous pregnancy, or history of miscarriage.
*For postnatal massage, you must have had your postnatal check-up.
However, please note, we can still offer facials, ear candling, light therapy on non-adjacent areas and so on. Please check if unsure.
When is it best to avoid massage?
Massage is generally very safe when provided by a qualified therapist however sometimes there are instances when a massage is not recommended:
Suffering from Cold or Flu
Receiving Cancer Treatment
Deep Vein Thrombosis
For the full list of contra-indications, click here. Please note, if you attend with a listed contra-indication, we may not be able to refund any deposit you have paid.
What oils do you use?
We have a variety of different mediums available to use during your massage. We can use massage waxes or aromatherapy oils, and this will depend on the therapist you see. We will always ensure the oil used is suitable for you. Most of our therapists who offer Aromatherapy may blend our high quality essential oils specifically to your requirements.
What type of Massage should I choose?
This really depends what you would like to get out of your session. All of our therapists are able to adapt and combine the treatments they offer, to suit your requirements.
The description of each treatment, and what their benefits can be, are available from the Therapies Page to help you decide what would suit you best.
If you would like to speak directly to a therapist, we can arrange for them to call you back at a convenient time to answer any queries you may have.
Are you qualified to provide massage treatments?
All of our therapists are fully qualified, and members of relevant professional bodies. Certificates of qualifications are readily available by request.
How will I feel after a Massage Treatment?
Most people feel very relaxed. Some may experience a decrease in aches and pains and possibly increased range of movement in joints. Many feel a little slowed down or sleepy for a short period and then notice an increase of energy, heightened awareness and increased productivity which can last for days.
If you have received a firm to deep pressure massage, you may be slightly sore the next day (like the day after doing a workout at the gym). A soak in the bath can sometimes alleviate this. You are advised to increase your water intake after your treatment so as not to become dehydrated.
What is the best way to book an appointment?
Treatments are by appointment. We do not always have a receptionist at the front desk, so Booking Online is the easiest way to book an appointment. You will be able to see when each therapist is available, and also what treatments are available at that time. We do require a small deposit to secure the booking, which is then deducted from the cost of your treatment on the day.
Why is your phone going to an Answering Machine?
We do not have a full time receptionist at the centre, so you may find our line goes to voicemail outwith the reception hours of 9:15am – 2:15pm (later on Fridays and Saturdays). This means we are all in treatments, and we will call you back in around an hour (during opening hours until 7:30pm). The answering machine is regularly checked, so if you leave a message we will usually get back to you fairly quickly. Alternatively if you would like to email us, please use our Contact Us page, and we will get back to you as soon as possible. Please remember that you can also Book Appointment Online.
Can I visit the centre to buy a Gift Voucher?
We work by appointment. The door is usually locked during these if all of the therapists are engaged in a treatment, so there is a chance if you come without pre-arranging you won’t be able to gain access. To save disappointment, give us a call or email us to arrange the collection of your voucher. We do sell Gift Vouchers, which can be paid for online and sent out via Royal Mail or emailed.
Can I purchase a gift voucher for one of your special offers?
Gift vouchers are available by length (eg. 60min Massage) or value (eg. £50). We are unable to provide Serenity Gift Vouchers for any special offers we may be running, however you can book these in for your loved ones (just remember to use your own contact details on the booking if it is a surprise!).
I have paid a deposit and I am cancelling my appointment. Can I get my deposit back?
It is usually best to keep your deposit on file and apply against your next appointment once you are able to re-schedule. If we are given sufficient notice of a cancellation and you wish your deposit to be refunded, please note that the refund process takes around 10 working days, and we will require the last 4 digits of your payment card in order to locate your payment. If we are given less than 24 hours notice of cancellation or rescheduling an appointment, it is our policy that the deposit becomes non-refundable. Please note that we cannot refund Gift Vouchers.
Why can’t I book an appointment to use a gift voucher using the online booking system?
If you have a physical gift voucher (printed on card), you will need to call us direct to book in. If you are greeted by an answering machine, please leave a message and we will return your call as soon as possible. If you have an online gift voucher code, you should be able to enter this when booking online.
Can I book two different treatments, one after the other, through the online booking system?
Yes, but only if the two treatments are with the same therapist. Just tick the box next to each treatment to select which ones you would like and they will be scheduled in next to each other if time permits.
How long are block bookings valid for?
This will depend on how many treatments are in the block, and the most appropriate period for your treatment plan will be discussed with the therapist at the time of purchase. Usually this will be 2 months, as this allows you to receive the optimum benefits from your treatments. For Gift Vouchers, all appointments in the block must be used by the Gift Voucher expiry date, which is typically 6 months. Please be aware, our usual cancellation & amendments policy applies.
How long are Gift Vouchers valid for?
Typically, gift vouchers are valid for around 6 months, and the expiry date will be stated on the voucher. If the gift voucher was part of a special promotional offer, the validity could be less. Please book in good time before the expiry of any gift vouchers, as some treatments may only be available with certain therapists, or on specific days. To ensure your appointment is at a suitable time, please bear in mind that evenings, Fridays and Saturdays fill up quickest, so you may need to book 1 week in advance or more. In extenuating circumstances, Serenity may opt to extend the validity period of a gift voucher, but we reserve the right to charge an admin fee in this case.
I have been told by my GP that massage is not suitable for me. Is there an alternative treatment that can aid relaxation?
We also offer Reiki at the centre, which is a Japanese Energy Healing method which aids relaxation. Click here to find out more information.