Massage managed to mute me mouth

I KNOW that many of you would find the idea of taking your clothes off and being in a woman s capable hands for an hour very intimidating, but, being a nice guy, I m prepared to suffer it on your behalf and because I am the ultimate professional (just doi

I KNOW that many of you would find the idea of taking your clothes off and being in a woman's capable hands for an hour very intimidating, but, being a nice guy, I'm prepared to suffer it on your behalf and because I am the ultimate professional (just doing my job).

It's a tough job, as they say, but somebody's got to do it. Suzie King is a qualified masseuse. I know this because she's got some letters after her name, although I know not what they mean.

There's no need to know what they mean. Having letters after your name is inherently impressive to others, and knowing what they signify almost lessens their appeal.

I also know that she's a qualified masseuse for the very simple reason that she gives a very good massage. I'm always rather cynical about so-called 'alternative' therapies, as opposed to the tried and trusted way of doing things. It's a brand of scepticism which I've inherited from my father, and one which I particularly enjoy.

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In the name of this column, however, I am often asked to try new things. Still, the local naturist society reject my (seemingly unwelcome) advances, but I'm happy to bide my time.

Before I get all glassy-eyed about the possibility of nudity in open spaces, I'm going to tell you about Suzie's profession.

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She does many different types of massage - deep tissue work, Indian head massage, reiki and something she calls 'stillpoint therapy'.

This is a technique refined after years of practice and a combination of remedial and clinical massage. It has evolved from bringing years of stressed-out patients to their 'still point', that is, a state of calm and relaxation, where they feel they can rest, put everything on the back burner for a while and start again refreshed and invigorated.

Each treatment is tailor-made for every individual - what might relax one, might stress another, so an in-depth questionnaire is completed before each session to ensure the right protocol is followed.

I pride myself on the ability to talk at a mile a minute. Suzie, though, becomes concerned when I haven't spoken for 10 minutes midway through our session. "I'm not the one who's kept Journeyman Jones quiet, am I?" she jokes.

It's not that she's kept me quiet. Frankly, if I'm surrounded by the strains of Enya, as I am here, I would normally do all I can to drown her out. But the therapy leaves me at peace, without needing to converse. I rarely say anything sensible anyway, so this is perhaps a blessing in disguise.

I can feel the tension in my hamstrings being worked out. The knots in my lower back - Suzie tells me that I'm very tense - slowly disappear, and I'm on the verge of falling asleep.

Up to the shoulders and head. Suzie carefully dodges my dandruff throughout the head massage, which is a shame, because I had deliberately allowed it to build up over a few days.

She doesn't deserve that though, poor woman. Having to see me in my underpants is traumatic enough, surely.

Indian head massage is a particularly interesting thing. There's no need to take your clothes off, but it has its benefits too. Even babies can be massaged every day until they are toddlers. You only need half an hour and it can help you to think positively and clearly.

Massage can be used to treat a number of ailments: sciatica, repetitive strain injury, irritable bowel syndrome, stress, chronic fatigue or, if you just feel like being pampered for an hour, there is surely no better way.

Massage has been used as a form of therapy throughout recorded history, and no doubt before that. The idea of rubbing on a sore spot to relax it or make it better has been around almost since the dawn of civilisation, and various countries and cultures have adapted this idea to create their own forms of massage.

Hence Swedish massage, Indian head massage, acupuncture - which was developed in China - all have their roots in different countries.

The origins of the word "massage" are a subject of debate. It may have come from the Greek word "massin" (to knead), or the Arabic "mass" or the Hebrew "mashesh", which both mean "to press".

It's all fascinating stuff. Suzie is a fine exponent of her art, and well worth a visit. You can contact her on 01353 663303 or email:

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