better massagesWe’ve all seen the episode of Friends where Monica discovers her massages are terrible. She has to be good at everything, but giving massages is just not her thing. We’ve all received terrible massages, and it can be difficult to forgive a partner if all they do is tickle you or knead the muscles in your back like a batch of dough.

Learning to give a good massage can transform your experience in the bedroom. Not only is it a very sensuous form of foreplay, but it’s also a way of connecting with your partner on a very intimate level. It shows that you are generous and caring, and these are both essential traits in a relationship.

Techniques for better massages

Some people are just gifted at giving massages, but if you’re not one of them, don’t worry. There are simple tricks you can learn that will make your massages much more relaxing. If you’re worried about your massage technique, follow these steps to giving better massages.

Choose the right oil

The first step to giving the perfect massage is choosing the right oil or lotion. A normal moisturiser isn’t going to cut it in this situation as it will absorb too quickly and lead to irritating friction. Be aware that oils might be difficult to get out of bed sheets, so it’s worth laying a towel down if you’re fond of your thread count.

Use all of the senses

Lighting a scented candle or spritzing a mist of room spray can make for a much more relaxing environment. Scents like lavender are known for their relaxing qualities, while eucalyptus has incredible healing properties.

Be responsive

Your partner shouldn’t be wincing or writhing under your touch. Start slow and gentle to warm the muscles up and don’t go too heavy with the pressure. It isn’t a sports massage and you aren’t trying to treat the knots, you’re just trying to give your partner a relaxing experience. Save the technical work for an actual masseuse.

Stop the chop

You might have seen this done on TV, but it takes a lot of practice to get the chopping action right. For starters, it isn’t a karate chop. You aren’t trying to cut your partner’s back in two. The fingers should be spread apart and bounce off the muscles. This bouncing sensation can loosen up muscles if used correctly, but if you’re unsure, just stick to the long sweeping strokes.

Understand the anatomy

There are a few massage mishaps that will make for a really unpleasant time. These include pushing on any bones (ow!), putting pressure on the spine and treating the lower back the same as the shoulders. Keep your strokes to either side of the spine and try to work around the bones in the shoulders. When massaging the lower back, don’t apply too much pressure as this can be quite painful.

Use the tools you have

Whether you’re planning on your massage taking a sexy turn or not, there’s no reason you can’t use the tools at your disposal. A finger vibrator can greatly enhance the massage experience by contrasting the sweeping strokes with focussed vibrations. Using it on the more delicate areas like the inner elbow and back of the knees is a great way to test the water before getting more intimate.

Don’t expect one in return

There’s nothing worse than getting really relaxed after a massage and then seeing your partner flop down next to you and say “my turn!”. A massage is something you should give without expectation of anything in return. If your partner falls asleep during the massage, it isn’t the time to get upset because you thought it was leading to something else. Take it as a compliment that your massage helped them to achieve these levels of relaxation!

One final note on receiving massages. Don’t be afraid to give directions, but don’t just lay there are bark orders. If the experience is overall a relaxing one, then you don’t have to give any instructions. Remember that it’s supposed to be a sensuous massage that brings you closer together, so don’t worry if they don’t manage to work out that knot in your shoulder. However, if something is painful, make sure you say something as poor massage technique can quickly lead to problems.

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