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Bargain rubdowns Massage: A school offers an inexpensive, hourlong trip to the realm of relaxation.


Looking for a stress-busting holiday getaway - for under $100? The Student Clinic at the Baltimore School of Massage in Woodlawn offers an escape: a one-hour, full-body massage. And at $25 a session, it beats the $45 to $125 fee for a professional massage.

Student massage therapists have completed about 60 percent of the 510-hour Professional Massage Training Program, approved by the Maryland Higher Education Commission, the American Massage Therapy Association Commission on Massage Training Accreditation, and the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology.

The client fills out a health history, attends a brief information session, then enters a low-lighted, burgundy-curtained cubicle. Instructors supervise the massage, which is tailored to requests.

Student Liz Litvack remembers one enthusiastic client: "She loved a certain stretch so much that she said, 'Can you do that ten more times?' "

Litvack did.

After the massage, clients complete an evaluation of the student's work.

The clinic offers three kinds of massages: Swedish, deep-tissue and myofascial.

A Swedish massage moves quickly to increase blood flow and relax superficial muscles. It is sometimes combined with deep-tissue massage, which focuses on specific muscle groups. myofascial massage relaxes the fascia, or the layer between the skin and muscle.

To get the most from your massage, discuss your goals with your therapist, said Jennifer Grover, a graduate of the school. Include sore spots, areas that need less work, and mood.

"When someone comes in with stress or a bad headache and they walk out with a smile, it's a great experience for both of us," Grover said.

Massage therapy can offer more than a mood lift. According to Student Clinic director Lee Bean, it can improve circulation, reduce stress, relieve sore muscles and increase range of motion.

"We as a society need to start looking at preventative therapy," said BSOM graduate Paula Murray. "Massage gives people an (( hour to relax and at the same time do something for their health."

Affordable Massage

You can get a $25 massage at the Student Clinic at the Baltimore School of Massage:

Where: 6401 Dogwood Road, Woodlawn.

Hours: Tuesday 1:30 p.m.-9 p.m.; Thursday 4 p.m.-9 p.m.; Saturday 9 a.m.-2 p.m.; Sunday 10:15 a.m.-3:15 p.m.

Information: Call 410-944-3315. Two weeks' notice recommended for appointments. Gift certificates available.

Pub Date: 12/13/98

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