MASSAGE Magazine has run some articles on how to sell products within a massage practice, and we’ll run more on this topic in 2009. We’ve taken some flack from readers who think that offering products to clients is somehow unethical, or shouldn’t be part of a health-care practice. I’m writing now, from the perspective of an avid massage consumer, to tell you it’s not only ethical, but also desired.

Shopping for bodywork supplies is interesting for me, and fun. Using self-massage tools, lotions, heated buckwheat pillows and other products keeps me in touch with my body, relaxes me and helps me take a break from my overactive mind. The only problem I face in this regard is access to such products.

My local health-food store stocks a few things, and I can always shop online. But when I’m shopping for vegetables or surfing the Internet, I’m just not in a frame of mind to look for self-care products. Instead, I’m in “doing and thinking” mode – so I usually contain my massage-product purchasing to the national massage conventions I attend for MASSAGE Magazine. And let’s be real: Most massage clients don’t attend massage therapists’ professional conventions!

Maybe it’s just me (but I honestly don’t think so): I’d love it if my massage therapist carried some items I could buy to take home with me after a session. If such products were appropriate to a massage practice, within the therapist’s scope of practice, and offered in the spirit of self-care, then those products will be accepted, appreciated and, most importantly, used between sessions for health maintenance.

Isn’t that what really matters?

Until next time.