The majority of my massage business is out calls. I go to people’s homes with my own massage table to work on them. The advantages of doing house calls is that it provides me with information about their lifestyles.
When I start working with a new client I make it a point to observe their postural behavior. What I see is people who are in chronic pain tend to move as little as possible. They often times become what is labeled a couch potato.
When I witness a couch potato’s posture as they sit down in their favorite spot, I realized that people don’t always sit on their sit bones. They recline, prop feet up and sorta lay down on their neck and upper back. When this posture is repeated for years, the hip muscles and hamstrings shorten.
There is a slippery slope of side effects from this. The hip joint will stop functioning as it should. If this person does attempt to exercise they will quickly go into spasms. This is caused by the shortening of muscles that are now also weak.
Even when sitting in an office chair, they’ll still have the effect of shortening in their pelvic muscles. Early on in my career, I realized that as helpful as massage therapy can be, the client’s lifestyle choices were having more effect that I could.
Massage will help relieve their pain, but in the long run, no matter how painful it can be, the most important thing is to keep moving. I don’t mean strenuous exercise. Just short walks, small stretches and some strengthening exercises will do for a start. If you can manage a bit of chair yoga or Tai Chi, all the better. Only do those movements which you can do comfortably, but challenge yourself to do one more than you did the day before.