I’m a huge fan of on-site massage and have had dozens of such treatments over the years and subsequently, I have always suspected that the Kneader would be the perfect on-site massage tool. I was not alone in this – many on-site/chair massage therapists have agreed, in particular Carl Newbury (owner of Massage World Magazine and practicing chair therapist) and Pauline Baxter (owner of Academy of On-site Massage, who features the Kneader in her excellent supplemental tools course: AOSM Tools Course). But I underestimated the power of a routine: whilst many therapists out there use the Kneader as a part of their routines, I wanted the Kneader to become the routine with regards to on-site massage. I therefore needed to provide a routine that was both an effective and different from all the many worthy on-site routines out there.
Whilst the on-site treatments I’ve had were always beneficial, I always felt there should be more effleurage – was that the Swedish massage therapist in me talking or just the pleasure puppy? I suspect it’s a bit of both! I always wanted to marry up Swedish massage moves with on-site static and trigger point moves and, again, suspected that the Kneader could help because it flows so well over clothes (unlike hands – doing a stroking/effleurage move over someone’s shirt is hard going). So, in 2014, I got up off my proverbial and literal backside and took an on-site massage course, which provided me with both a basic routine and a qualification to work with. Even as I was being taught the on-site routine, I could see how and where the Kneader could improve the overall treatment and I was biting at the bit to test my theories out. By January 2015, I had written up a full on-site back, arms and head routine and then carved out five shorter routines with which to start Kneads Must On-Site Massage. Now, all I needed were clients!
They came in the form of a Nuffield Gym, a corporate gym operating out of a company in Canary Wharf where I now do a regular Friday afternoon on-site massage gig for their employees. It has been a learning curve but one that I have loved and the client feedback (and loyalty – I have several regulars) has been amazing.
In March, I demonstrated the routine to Carl Newbury, who not only saw the USP (unique selling point, for those not into acronyms) of this new hybrid routine but enjoyed the massage enough to organise for me to speak at an informal workshop on the treatment a couple of weeks later. I wanted to test the moves on established on-site therapists, so Carl organised 7 of his colleagues to come hear me speak at the Wholefoods Market in Fulham Brdway in London. I was SO nervous doing this, but it turned out to be a super day. All the therapists understood and enjoyed the moves and confirmed that they would be happy to learn the Kneader On-Site routine and offer it as a treatment to their clients. Talk may be cheap but the fact that they bought Kneaders to practice with in the meantime was the hard-cash proof I needed! It was also a buzz seeing how quickly they all perfected the moves and, for the first time ever, I experienced my own Kneader moves as a client – three therapists gave me what they call a “six-handed massage” (one working on the left side of my back, the other working on my right side and one giving me a head massage) – my brain nearly exploded with all the pleasure and my life will never be the same again!
The Kneader On-Site Massage course is currently being written up and to be on offer this summer. Onwards and upwards? I hope so, so just watch this space.