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Why would massage make a client feel cold?

Hi Forum
I've had some puzzling feedback from a case study today. I am currently treating chronic over-use symptoms in the hands/wrists and forearms - they have been ongoing for about two years.
My treatment was approx. 1 hour and consisted of medium pressure and included amongst other techniques mainly effleurage, stripping and compression. She wasn't cold during the treatment and in fact I noticed some slight pink colouration to the extensor muscles after the massage - she also said she felt very relaxed afterwards.
When I did my second treatment today, she fed back that last week after the massage she felt cold all over, particularly in the hands and forearms. She says this often happens after a massage. She is very prone to cold extremeties and is under a lot of stress in her life.
I'm confused as I thought massage would promote better blood flow and also a feeling of relaxation would encourage less stress hormones in the body.
During the fight or flight response does blood flow to the internal organs and away from the limbs or the other way - ie. if you're going to need to run away your leg muscles need blood to run? I'm confused as I know when I'm feeling anxious/stressed my hands go cold?
Any help appreciated.


Hi Melanie
Massage will help someone to relax and lower their blood pressure, that will quite often leave them feeling cold, it can continue for quite a while :-)


Thanks I hadn't thought of that.


Hi... i agree with Paul - and this is most likely.
There is a very slim chance that it may also be a nerve thing, especially if isolated to a bodyarea... you could ask them if they're cold to the touch, or just feel cold? If they are warm to the touch and just feel cold, it could be something to do with their nerves... (but I wouldn't tell them that, or it could worry them! If it's severe and uncomfortable or if they're worried, I would advise them to see their GP). I treat a lady with MS who has these symptoms, but is warm to the touch. Paul's explanation is the most likely, though.


Hi yogajoga
feeling cold after a treatment is also a sign that a great deal of negative energy has been released, so it sounds like you are doing a great job.
If when taking a clients medical history and observing the clients manorat the start of treatment the client appears to be on the edge/ in crisis (so many people will try to tough it out for too long) its likely the client may become cold/emotional after treatment so warning them of this and talking through this posibility will help them realize this is a positive thing.
Regards steve


thanks stephen that's interesting. my client is indeed in crisis at present and does suppress a lot of emotion. i will advise her of this and emphasize the positive side.

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