No, we don’t take tips for massages.
Reasoning behind our no-tipping policy
You see, the work we do at Soma is different than most places you’ve been to. We’re not going to rub lotion on you for an hour, and kick you out the door a little more greasy than when you got here. We’re going to focus on your posture, your trigger points, and your connective tissue. We’re going to stick our knuckles in your trapezius, break down the adhesions in your sacroiliac joint and iliotibial band, and use our elbows to strip your hamstrings and get those muscle fibers to line up again.
Sound therapeutic? It is.
(Sound intense? It can be. But we are certainly able to give you less pressure if that’s what you need. Just say the word!)
Why we believe massage is medicine
Our philosophy of massage is that this is medicine. This is vital to your health and wellbeing. Countless studies have proven the health benefits time and time again: it boosts the immune system, lowers blood pressure, speeds recovery after surgery, improves focus, decreases the risk of heart disease, and in some cases is even more helpful for low back pain than NSAIDS and chiropractic. And besides that, the last time we checked, we’ve never heard of anyone ever tipping their physical therapist or chiropractor. If you’ve never tipped them, why in the world would you tip us? Though the modalities are different, the intention is much the same. This isn’t a fluff-and-buff. Like I said, this is medicine.
Physical therapy and not just a Massage
Ever wonder why insurance companies won’t pay for your massage, but they will pay for your physical therapy? Because tipping your therapist puts her in the realm of the service industry, not the healthcare field where she belongs. We are not doing your nails or getting you a drink — we are helping you heal and recover from injuries, whether they are acute or chronic. Nail techs, hairstylist, cab drivers, and servers have good, honest, hard working jobs, don’t get me wrong — but they’re not exactly providing therapy in the same way a massage therapist does. Until we start seeing and treating massage therapists as the healthcare professionals that we are, insurance companies will continue to dismiss us, meaning it’s going to be harder to explain to them why you need massage to help your sciatic pain / carpal tunnel / migraines / high blood pressure / fill in the blank.
So please, PLEASE — don’t feel guilty the next time you come to Soma and leave without adding tips for massages. It honestly is okay. And besides: the best tip you can give us is to tell your friends about Soma! Word of mouth advertising is the very best way any small business can grow!