Don’t be lazy. The effort you put into finding a good massage therapist will well be worth your time. Now think do I want to go to the big chain or find an independent?
For example, when you do a web search, to locate a therapist, don’t just read the first page or so listings. Dig deeper. Find a therapist who has his own web site, maybe he or she has a blog. This person is really interested in their profession, so much so they take time to explain it to the lay public. If they are a independent therapist with years of experience they can provide you with the kind of massage that rises above the mediocrity of the big massage chains. This is especially true if you want therapy vs just relaxation work.The skill level is different.
The experienced independent, just by virtue of there longevity, you can infer, has survived in a highly competitive market without the advantages of big advertising dollars. That means there work speaks for itself.
When I graduated the average therapist lasted 3 years. Now days it’s less. We do it largely by referrals, so ask your friends who they see. But don’t stop there your work has just begun.
Do your want a male or female therapist? Let me answer for you, because the answer to that question is well known in the massage community. You feel more comfortable with a female. Over 85% of the Masseurs are that gender. So the men who survive in this profession are among the best. They have to be. Interestingly, when you poll massage recipients who receive massage regularly they express no preference in the therapists gender. They just want the best massage.