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A spa intake form is a brief questionnaire that many spas ask their clients to fill out before receiving spa services. In addition to providing information about the service to the client, the intake form also has a space for clients to record medical conditions or concerns, ensuring that spa staff provide the best service possible. Because spa intake forms contain confidential information, they are usually kept in secure files and access to such forms is limited to only a few members of the spa staff. As a client, you may reasonably ask what is done with the material on your spa intake form.
Disclosing information about medical conditions on a spa intake form is extremely important, especially in the case of allergies. Many spas use a wide assortment of ingredients in their products, and they do not want their clients to get sick or uncomfortable while receiving spa services. By being aware of your allergies, spa staff can make recommendations or adjust treatments accordingly. Other conditions may be exacerbated by certain spa treatments, and it is helpful for therapists to be aware of health problems like diabetes, heart conditions, circulatory problems, and so forth. Pregnancy is another medical condition which should be disclosed, as pregnant clients require special care.
There is also usually a section on a spa intake form which clearly indicates which services are provided, and a disclaimer usually states that spa services are non-sexual in nature. This section may also include a paragraph about behavior which will terminate a session, such as inappropriate commentary to a member of the spa staff, or attempting to touch a massage therapist while he or she works. Clients should read this section carefully before signing a spa intake form, as it also usually releases the spa of liability in the event of injury or damage.
It is a good idea to check with your doctor before receiving spa services, as you may have underlying issues which could be a concern in an environment like a hot tub or sauna. You may want to mention a potential spa visit to your doctor if you have a medical condition, to get his or her advice on which spa treatments are safe for you.
Spas ask their clients to fill out these forms partially for self-protection, and partially to ensure that their clients are well served. Spas protect themselves by making it clear that they are not liable for damages or injuries which may be caused by a spa visit, especially if a medical problem results from an undisclosed condition. Many massage therapists and spa staff also like to be aware of information about medical conditions, previous surgeries, and so forth, so that they can tailor a treatment to a client's body. It is also a good idea to discuss concerns and physical limitations directly with a massage therapist.
These forms give the spa necessary information, but they're also a protection for them. If a client brings a suit for some reason, the spa has the form specifying the client did or did not disclose certain information and requests. I would never run a spa without having a very detailed intake form. That's just asking for trouble.
I also think it's a great idea for the spa to have a list of guidelines the client must read in order to have the services done. It's also a good idea for spas to have therapists work only with clients of the same sex, to avoid charges of sexual misconduct on both sides. That's just common sense.
When I went to a spa for a massage, I filled out a form and was glad to see the form included a front and back drawing of a human body, and you circled the parts you did or did not want to be massaged during the session. Since I needed mostly back work, I asked that the therapist focus mainly on my back, neck and shoulders.
I'm kind of funny about a full-body type massage, so I asked the therapist to stick to back, neck, legs, shoulders and arms, and she did. She was great. It was a fantastic massage.
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