Much depending on the country or state requirements, massage therapists and bodyworkers may be obliged to let clients fill out a so-called Client Intake Form.
Often, this form will also include some kind of disclaimer or waiver for which the client will sign. These disclaimers usually state things like:
- “I understand that massage therapy is only for stress reduction, relaxation, relief of tension, improvement of blood circulation …”
- “by signing this form, I release my therapist of all liability, past, present, and future relating to massage and bodywork sessions.”
- “I understand that the services supplied are not a substitute for medical care …”
In addition, it’s actually very convenient for professional therapists to let clients fill out a form asking to supply their contact details, personal data (date of birth, gender, weight, etc.), job occupation, daily activities and hobbies, medical history, current health condition, dietary regime, and any other particular concerns, aims, reasons, needs, or expectations with regard to the massage or bodywork session.
Sometimes, intake forms also contain body charts (with front, back, and side views) on which the therapist can mark pain areas, injuries or other special info, which may help to visually understand the client’s health condition.
As a whole, we could say that the information supplied through intake forms can help therapists to better understand the client’s background and lifestyle, while also identifying potential treatment precautions and/or contraindications. It also gives initial pointers to the therapeutic approach that needs to be followed, the techniques that can be applied safely, and a first general indication of a possible treatment plan.
In general, a Client Intake Form is used the first time the therapist and client meet, but it may be updated during the massage or bodywork treatment cycle. Hence, the form can also become a means of recording progress over time.
In any case, on the Internet you can find many types of freely downloadable Client Intake Forms for massage and bodywork therapy (which you can print out), supplied by various massage organizations and associations around the world.