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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey there ladies! I had my first prenatal massage a few weeks ago while in Vegas for a convention. It was nice and all but not what I expected; I expected them to provide a special table which would be more comfy for a woman not able to lie flat on her belly... instead they did most of the massage while I was on my back, and had me lie on my side to do my back. Very uncomfy... NOT what I expected or wanted.

Anyways my question is, is this prenatal massage table I am pondering a figment of my imagination? Or does it actually exist? I just got a spa appt for my bday and I'm willing to try it again, but NOT if I have to lie on my side to have my back done! Any thoughts?

Thank you
 

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I had a massage recently and the lady adjusted the pillows so that my tummy had a place to fall. (I was on my front.) It was either that or be on my side. For the front shoulder portion, she had me lie on my back but put a rolled towel under my right hip... it wasn't that comfortable but the massage still felt great!

Do you mean a table with an adjustment hole for your tummy? I saw something like that at my chiropractic office.
 

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Yes,the table with the hole in it does exist. You may want to call around and find a massage therapist who specialies in pregnancy massage. Most massage therapists don't have the "special table".
Also, the massage therpist should not have had you on your back most of the time. As a massage therapist who has had some training in prenatal massage, I have learned that it is contraindicated to lay a pregnant woman on her back during a massage. It cuts off circulation to the baby.
It can be comfortable receiving a massage on your side. You just have to experiment with different pillows and positions.
Good Luck
 

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I got a prenatal massage with special pads arranged on the table so that there was a little nest for my belly. Very, very nice. It was a place that advertized prenatal massage as one of their specialties. I've also been getting them from the massage therapist at my chirpractor's office who has me on one side and then the other with pillows between my legs and to hold. His massage is less the feel-good kind than the therapy kind (he focuses on trigger points) and it works well with me on my side.
 

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My massage therapist's table has a slight dip for the belly and breasts but when my belly got too big I switched over to the side. She also switched up the style of massage so it's much more focused on those side muscles which really get tight and need loosening. I delayed moving from face down to back as long as I could but the side was actually quite nice because it was like I was lying in bed while having someone massage the back!

Also I personally don't see a problem with being on the back as long as you are comfortable and it's not for long. Yes the baby will put pressure there but as long as you don't start feeling pain or tingling it's really no big deal IMO to be on your back for a few minutes. I know I really needed the hamstring stretches, inner thigh stretches, and arm stretches that the therapist did for the few minutes I was on my back.

Also you'd want to make sure that your therapist is specialized in prenatal massage, that way he/she will know what special accomodations need to be done for pregnant women.

You mentioned a spa...there's often a big difference between the relaxing spa massage and the therapeutic medical massage you'd get from a prenatal massage therapist. The second one will hurt sometimes when they get to work on knots and overly tense muscles...it feels great afterwards but in the beginning as they really work out the tension it's not going to be like the typical "I'm at the spa" kind of massage.
 

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I actually am a massage therapist so I'm super happy to be able to answer this question.

First of all, those specially designed prenatal massage tables ... they're total crap. They aren't actually safe, they're just more safe than lying straight on your belly. While using one your belly will still be in a position where it isn't particularly safe to be for a long period of time. Any MT who really knows what they're doing won't use one of those tables.

Second of all, the side-lying position is the most common for prenatal massage. If you're accustomed to having your back worked on while lying prone (face-down) then it can often seem less satisfying. But then again, if you realize that it's much safer to do side-lying then you can deal with it being slightly less satisfying.

Thirdly, how far along are you? Depending where you are in your pregnancy, your MT should really only be working on you side-lying. After a certain point the size of your belly makes it really unsafe for you to be worked on while you're lying on your back as well.

And I'm going to echo what the others said above ... make sure you're seeing someone who specializes in prenatal massage. There are A LOT of trigger points in your body which should be avoided during pregnancy and unless someone is specially trained, they won't necessarily know that.

Massage can be one of the most wonderful things you can do for yourself while you're pregnant, as long as your MT is really well trained and really knows what they're doing.

Good luck!
 

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I actually had a massage yesterday with a table with a hole in it and I was VERY comforatable! I am almost 33 weeks and I think if I was any bigger I wouldn't fit. I thought it was wonderful to be able to lay on my tummy and I didn't want to get up. I had one with my first that just offered a belly dipped pad but it wasn't as nice. Call around
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you guys for the feedback! I am only 22 wks right now so it's still ok for me to be on my back... thankfully as that is the only way I'm comfy sleeping right now! (With a pillow under my knees/lower legs!)

I do not like therapeutic massage where they hurt you... I had it done once and kept expecting to feel better after, instead I felt like I'd been in a car accident after. Does that happen to anyone else??? I like the feel good kind of massage


Since being on my side is uncomfy for me at the best of times right now (at home, with my own bed and my own pillows, dunno why, just very uncomfy), it was even LESS comfy on a table I felt like I might topple off of at any given moment. I'm a big girl (plus-sized) and while I'm not HUGE, I didn't feel that "safe" on the table, on my side and propped up by pillows. Not very safe, not very comfy. The spa was a really nice one though, I had a fabulous massage there in January when I got married. I'm sure the lady knew what she was doing, it just wasn't what I expected.

If my only option is to be on my side, I'm going to just skip it. At least unless my body changes (well, we know it will do that!) so much so that being on my side is more comfy. I'm getting nervous about whether or not I'll be miserable once I know sleeping on my back isn't good for the baby to begin with... so being on my side is not the position I'd choose to "relax." Anyways for that amount of money, it should be RELAXING not worrying!
 
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