Can you have too much of a good thing?

Can you over indulge on massage? Are there are issues or long lasting damage for over-doing it?!


There are many questions that people have about massage but can be too frightened to ask but a common question regards frequency and when, if at all, it is possible to over-indulge in massage.

Laying your mind to rest

First things first, unless you are opting for deep tissue massage as a result of a sporting type injury, there is unlikely to be a point where a massage can happen too frequently. Like most things, however, the key to gaining as much benefit from a massage session as possible is balance. It may be hard to imagine now, but there are times when over-indulgence in massage can become too common place for it to be effective, almost as if the touch of another human is irritating.

But, the good news is this – it will take a very long time and many thousands of massage before you reach this point, in most cases anyway! But, like many things, the point of over indulgence is a variable that will vary from one person to another.

The benefits of massage – a reminder

Before we plunge headlong into the arguments for and against (if there are any!) for ‘over-indulging’ in massage, the reasons why we seek a massage in the first place need to be re-examined, as do the benefits…

  • The power of touch gave give an amazing sense of heightened relaxation
  • Tense muscles can be soothed to uncoil and relax
  • Skin tone can also improve
  • Sleep is also significantly improved, both falling asleep and getting a restful night
  • Our bodies also function better, with the transit of waste products also being improved
  • There are also suggestions that we produce more white blood cells, boosting our immune system
  • Injuries can also be helped to heal

Therapeutic, not just a ‘luxurious indulgence’

Many people, of course, see massage as an indulgence and, in all honesty, who wouldn’t welcome a gift voucher for a local spa for a whole day or afternoon of pampering that includes a massage?

Very few, we would imagine but, in this discussion of can you have too much of a good thing when it comes to massage, you need to bear in mind that massage, when administered correctly, is a therapeutic treatment and not just an indulgence.

For many people, the scheduling of a massage, either an hour long full body massage to a 15 minute neck and shoulder massage is an important interlude, in which the mind, body, soul and spirit can be rejuvenate to carry on facing the rigours of everyday life.

There is much talk of mental and physical well-being, with massage playing an important part in maintaining this healthy balance.

But, can you have too much of a goof thing, physically?

There are no studies and scientific pieces of research that note over-indulging in massage can be bad for the human body. The only time that science says care needs to be exercised in when serious sports injuries are being treated as over stimulation of the muscles, ligaments and surrounding fibres and so on, can make recovery more painful.

In the main, this is not what many people battle, indulging in massage for a variety of personal reasons, from loosening repetitive strains to having some much needed ‘me time’. However, if you are opting for massage as a way of solving specific issues, your masseuse will be able to advise on how often you should opt for massage to alleviate the issue.

As a general guide only…

The suggestion would be that for chronic conditions – you may be suffering from headaches or back pain for example. An hour long massage twice a week, over 4 weeks could be the alleviation you need, followed by 3 to 4 weeks at once a week. After this, go as often as you feel you need to stay on top of any aches and pains.

General wellness, ‘me time’ and so on – many people opt for once a month massage, presenting themselves with an afternoon or morning where they can slow the pace of life right down, enjoying all the benefits that massage can bring.

In summary

Massage is a treatment that can work wonders. It can alleviate the aches and pains you can sometimes feel when stressed or under pressure. Serious injuries can also be dealt with, and the recuperation and rehabilitation phase too.

But, the only real factor that prevents people from ‘over-indulging’ is money. If money was no object, would you start or end every stressful day with a professional massage?