What’s it like to start a new position, with a new team, in the middle of a pandemic? Louise McKechnie, qualified in both Swedish massage therapy and Indian head massage, started at Eyre Place in September 2020, then had an enforced break until April this year due to Covid 19 restrictions. Not only is this a new position for Louise, it’s also the first time that she’s worked alongside other health professionals as part of a wider practice having worked on her own for the last fifteen years within the Scottish Government. She did, however, know the practice, having had osteopathic treatment herself by Glynis. She’s now settling in, having taken along some of her clients from the Scottish Government who haven’t been able to access treatment during the pandemic.

Louise offers both Swedish massage and Indian head massage. The Swedish massage is a feel-good massage involving gentle manipulation to stimulate both blood circulation and lymphatic drainage, as well as relieving muscle spasm. It can help with reducing pain and swelling, and anxiety. It’s particularly good for relaxing tension for those people who spend a lot of time sitting at desks or tables. Louise uses non-scented oils for this massage, and you have your massage lying down on a plinth, having removed your outer clothing. As with all treatments at Eyre Place, your dignity is paramount, and Louise uses towels to protect your privacy.

Indian head massage is a bit different. Clients keep their clothes on. You sit down, rather than lie down, and Louise doesn’t use oils for this massage. She works the scalp, neck, shoulders, and upper back. Outside Covid restrictions, she also massages the face. This is an ideal massage for those who prefer not to lie down, and or to remove their outer clothing.

While osteopathy and Swedish massage therapy are very different, having the two treatments co-located is ideal for Eyre Place. Osteopathy patients are already taking advantage of having Louise on-site and booking in for massages.

As with many health professionals, Louise has noticed a change in the issues her clients are presenting during the pandemic. She puts a lot of this down to home working. Many people working at home are not moving as often as they do in an office environment. They are also likely to be sitting on chairs that are the wrong height and working at laptops without monitors. All of this is leading to increased tightness in backs, necks, and shoulders.

An ideal day for Louise is when she’s had a few tricky appointments, and everyone has walked out feeling a bit better. They may have a smile on their face, or their movement has improved. Sometimes they may walk in with a grimace, and when they walk out, they float out of the room. Before training as a massage therapist at the Scottish Massage Schools, Louise worked in internal audit for a local authority. In that role, some people were nervous about seeing her. Now, people seek her out for her understanding, her helpfulness, her friendliness, and of course her fifteen years of professional massage experience.

For Louise, this desire to help feel people feel better, to focus on their individual issues and circumstances, is the best thing about being a massage therapist. She tailors every massage to her clients’ needs, listening carefully to what they say, seeing what works, and what doesn’t, and adapting her therapy accordingly. ‘Cures’ don’t tend to happen in one session. For many clients, successive treatments will release a bit more tension each time. While she has been treating clients for many years, she is always learning something new. Some people, for example, hold their tensions in unusual ways, and the pandemic has resulted in many of her existing clients presenting with different problems because their work environments have changed

Louise is delighted to be part of the team at Eyre Place, now celebrating its 21st birthday. She believes the fact that the busy practice has been going so long shows that the team is getting it right for clients and patients and its own practitioners. She has welcomed the support and kindness she’s been shown by the existing team members having arrived at such a complicated time.

When she’s not at work, Louise enjoys family adventures out in the wild, walking in forests, yoga, going to the cinema, reading, gardening, practising mindfulness and meeting up with family and friends.

Louise currently works two days a week in Eyre Place, Wednesdays, and Fridays. You can book an appointment here.

With the festive season just around the corner, Louise is offering massage vouchers for sale. These can be bought for family and friends, or of course, to treat yourself! There are a few different options:

  1. One 30 minute voucher (£30)
  2. One 60 minute voucher (£45)
  3. Buy 3 x 30 minute appointments and get 4th free (£90)
  4. Buy 2 x 60 minute appointments and get 3rd free (£90)

If you decide to go for option 3 or 4, you can keep the vouchers for yourself, or feel free to split them between friends and family. Louise will provide a voucher for any appointments bought as gifts.

If you would like to buy a voucher, or you have any questions, please email Louise.