Spa massages - Your experience?

This topic just came to mind because my back is in pain once again.  A year and a half ago I was on a cruise with a sore back and went for a masssge.  It made my back a lot worse.  Wasted a good chunk of change, my back was wrecked.  I’ve sworn never to go back to a ship board spa massage.  But maybe I’m wrong.


What’s been your experience with ship spa massages?  Help, no help, or made you feel worse?

Tags: Ship Spa Massage

14 Answers

The couple we cruise with always have spa massages and love them, but they go for the relaxation, not for easing back problems. My suggestion is to see a good registered massage therapist at home to help your back. A masseuse is very different from a massage therapist.

Hope your back is better soon JCOAKML.

The Spa massages that I have had on a ship are about the same as a land spa, relaxing but not much for digging in and getting the knots out. I have an excellent local massage therapist that is trained in sports medical clinic that really works out the knots when my back flairs up. It will hurt and I will be bruised for a few day but back pain gone in a day.

There is a difference between a relaxing spa massage and a medical physical therapy massage.

Spa massages are supposed to relax and sooth. They work on the muscles. They are not designed to "fix" back issues and unless the sore back is muscles only should not be used to try to fix it. It may be beneficial but before trying you should always check with your doctor first. Back issues stemming from spinal injuries or bone and joint issues may be aggravated by massages.

Well I feel like a big dummy. I honestly never considered the fact that if I have a bad back I should go to someone that specializes in taking care of backs. Not go to a spa massage on a cruise ship.


I'm open game for sarcastic and cutting replies! Go ahead and type your worst. LOL!

Nah .. it is a common thing JCOAKML. A good masseuse should always ask first but the spa on a ship is more money focused and health of the client focused.

I won’t tease you JCOAKML, it’s an easy mistake. Until I went for my first therapeutic massage for my sciatica, I didn’t realize the difference was so huge. After only 3 treatments, my pain was completely gone and has not returned - been about 5 yrs now. I used to have frequent restless nights because of sciatica but not any more. Hopefully a registered massage therapist can help you too.

Well, I guess I just got lucky on our first cruise. The young lady who worked on me during the couples massage noticed, without prompting, that I had broke my back and neck in my youth. She knew how to work the muscles and affected areas like the pro she was. We made two more appointments and had a great foot massage on the day we did a great deal of walking. On the second cruise the masseuse noticed a mark and suggested I go see a dermatologist upon my return---good thing she noticed---Cancer was removed 6 weeks later. I guess the chances are that there will be some who are not professionals . Our experience with Princess was different.

I hit the like button only for the fact that you plan a trip with someone "that specializes in taking care of backs". I want you to be the healthiest you can be!

On a port call to Ensanada Mexico while walking the main Blvd. we were asked if we wanted a massage, when we said "no thanks" they added it would be a "happy ending". I never did ask if it came with antibiotics or if I had to get those myself when back home ? Big Smile

I have never had one on a ship.


* is not a booking agent or travel agency, and does not charge any service fees to users of our site. Our partners (travel agencies and cruise lines) provide prices, which we list for our users' convenience. does not guarantee any specific rates or prices. While prices are updated daily, please check with the booking site for the exact amount. is not responsible for content on external web sites.

Back to Top