What's a soft tissue specialist?

Now, we're pretty sure you’ve heard of massage, and that you know there are lots of different types. But do you know what a soft tissue specialist is? This week, Hayley explains the difference between a massage therapist and a soft tissue specialist...


First of all - what do we mean by “soft tissue”? Well, technically it’s anything we’re made of that isn’t bone; so that’s muscle, tendon, ligament, nerve, fascia, connective tissue, lymph and much more.

But - what makes a soft tissue specialist different from a massage therapist?

There are lots of different types of massage, including (but definitely not limited to) Sports Massage, Deep Tissue Massage, Relaxation Massage, Aromatherapy Massage, Lymphatic Massage…. the list goes on. Getting qualified to perform each type of massage takes varying levels of training and experience; so if you want a quality massage, you do need to do your homework a bit.

A soft tissue specialist is someone qualified and experienced in many types of massage - and not just massage, but multiple different methods and techniques of communicating with the body, and a strong understanding of how to tailor treatment to an individual client’s specific needs. No two bodies are the same and therefore no two treatment sessions are the same. At Victory, I’m able to incorporate techniques and ideas from methods ranging from sports massage to craniosacral therapy, reflexology and reiki; and that learning and experience makes me very flexible when it comes to tailoring your experience exactly.

Similarly, a massage ends with the end of the session. Hopefully it’ll make you feel better for a while; but it’s a passive process so any issues are likely to recur sooner or later. A soft tissue specialist, though, gets deeper into the reason your body is feeling tight and can give you advice on aftercare - my clients know exactly what to do between sessions to maintain their improvement.

A real specialist - in any field - also knows their limits. I’m not a physiotherapist, a sports rehabilitator or a doctor (though, being at Victory, I spend a lot of time working with and learning from all of these). That means I know what I can treat, and when you really do need to see someone else. And that’s the essence of being Victory’s soft tissue specialist - I have my area of expertise, which I’m passionate about and constantly practising; and I’m surrounded by experts in other areas - so whatever your problem, we’ve got your back.

Do you have issues with your soft tissues? Dodgy posture, overtraining, or just can’t touch your toes? Give us a call on 0207 175 0150 and book a session with Hayley today.

Nell Mead