Giving Massage Clients More of the Wellness They Want
Giving Massage Clients More of the Wellness They Want

Giving Massage Clients More of the Wellness They Want

By Ann Brown , LMT
2019-12-16

Digital Exclusive

Giving Massage Clients More of the Wellness They Want

By Ann Brown , LMT
2019-12-16

Digital Exclusive

About five years ago, I wrote an article for Massage Today entitled “Wellness is the New Detox.” At the time, I pointed out how wellness was the new buzz word, replacing detox. Fast forward to 2019 and what was then a buzz word is still here – wellness is no longer a trend or a fad, but an integral part of our culture. More than just luxury, massage is part of the drive for wellness lifestyle.

In the Global Wellness Institute (GWI) white paper “Understanding Wellness: Four Global Forces Driving the Growth of the Wellness Economy” (July 2019), GWI points out these four forces at play:

1.      The world’s population is growing sicker, lonelier, and older.

2.      Environmental crisis is a health crisis.

3.      Health systems are failing to keep up while the economic burden rises.

4.      Demographics, value systems, and lifestyles are evolving toward wellness.

The first of those three forces present a dim view of our world today, but the fourth on the list becomes our guiding light, even while it is a challenging one to define or grasp.

What is Wellness?

GWI Senior Research Fellows Ophelia Yeung and Katherine Johnston point out that wellness continues to be a murky term, often inconsistently used and misunderstood. They offer the definition of wellness as “the active pursuit of activities, choices, and lifestyles that lead to a state of holistic health.”

Active pursuit. State of holistic health. The elements of this definition bring me back to the same premise I shared in my 2015 Massage Today article. As massage practitioners and wellness providers, we have an opportunity to expand the help and service we provide to clients. Massage is a wonderful wellness tool, and it can also be a door that opens to so much more for our clients.

Through your touch, you bring clients to a state of healing and new understanding about their bodies and overall health. People want to feel better. They want wellness. They also often want that “active pursuit of activities, choices, and lifestyles that lead to a state of holistic health” to be simplified for them.

How Can You Help?

Look for ways to package wellness offerings for your clients. Who can you partner with – who offers complementary services, such as acupuncture? Expanding wellness options for your clients will reinforce their loyalty to you and creates a scenario where all win.

If you aren’t ready for partnerships, start with how you can maximize the time your clients spend with you. I developed Saltability’s Himalayan Salt Stone Massage for exactly that purpose, because I knew we could improve upon how we support the client’s wellness in a one-hour massage session through the nourishment of Himalayan salt upon the skin.

Brainstorm about easy ways to do more, such as by adding a foot detox bath or some essential oils. Think about how to enhance what a client can do in a short period of time — how you can create a great experience with some simple additions to your practice.

At the end of the day, your clients will reap the benefits, and according to the latest data, so will you. According to GWI’s “Global Wellness Economy Monitor” spa sector report (Oct. 2018), international wellness travelers spend at a 53 percent premium compared to the average international tourist, while domestic wellness travelers spend at a 178 percent premium compared to the average domestic tourist.

Those who seek wellness make an investment of their time and money, so help them spend both wisely.

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