Exploring the Benefits of a Cannabis-Infused Massage with Rock&Rouge Bodywork Venue

For those who suffer from chronic pain conditions, it’s often difficult to find relief. Doctors prescribe opioids like candy, leaving many of us addicted and in more pain than when we started. Thanks to the increased legalization of cannabis for medical and recreational use, more chronic pain sufferers are turning to cannabis to get off the opioid merry-go-round. Rock&Rouge Bodywork Venue takes it a step even further by integrating cannabis into many aspects of their massage and physical therapy treatments.

Cannabis for Pain

Image Source: Leafly.com

Many of us who experiment with cannabis products in one form or another notice its pain relief properties. There is science behind that; cannabinoids have been found to have pain relieving as well as anti-inflammatory properties. Imagine taking something like Tylenol or Advil but have it come from a cannabis plant, not a chemical plant.

For those exploring cannabis as a pain reliever, Leafly.com is a great resource to find which strains are best for different kinds of pain (arthritis, migraines, menstrual cramps, etc.). By combining various cannabinoids as shown in the wheel here, it is possible to have a tailor-made cannabis pain treatment.

An Experience to Soothe Both Body and Mind

When Rock&Rouge Bodywork Venue’s owner, Karen, reached out to me, I was eager to see how Rock&Rouge stands out from other massage venues or spas. With Rock&Rouge, you don’t just make an appointment, go in for your treatment, and go home. Rock&Rouge is not a day spa. It is a total therapy experience designed to meet your physical as well as mental needs.

Karen started by inviting me to come in for a consultation. I’d never gone that in-depth with a massage therapist before, but I liked the idea of building a relationship before even stepping into the massage room. When we met, Karen asked me to describe what kind of pain I experience on a daily basis as well as what kind of treatments I use and have tried. I told her I suffer from tendinitis in my right arm and everything else that goes with that, such as headaches and tinnitus. She asked if I ever used cannabis topicals, which I have and love. While Karen doesn’t keep any cannabis topicals in her workspace, she encourages her clients to bring whatever works for them, so she can add it to her treatment plan.

Topicals aren’t the only cannabis product Karen uses in her therapy. If a client would like to smoke some flower before or after their massage, Karen has some space set aside for some discreet toking. Although her North Park office is surrounded by other businesses, her neighbors have been very accommodating, so far. She also prepares for her sessions by smoking a little herself. To Karen, cannabis is a way for her to forget all outside distractions and focus solely on her client. While 60-90 minutes may seem like a long time, every second is precious when it comes to any kind of physical therapy. She also relies on cannabis’s pain relief and anti-inflammatory properties in her hands and arms.

She needed all the help she could get with me.

I was diagnosed with tendinitis in my right shoulder, elbow, and wrist back in 2008. Since then, I have seen general practitioners, chiropractors, orthopedists, and a plethora of massage therapists in efforts to find some relief. Some methods worked better than others, but my pain level is always somewhere around 2-3 on good days and 6-7 on bad ones. SoCal traffic isn’t the only reason why I get annoyed when it rains. I take 600mg of ibuprofen daily. When shopping for cannabis products, one of my main criteria is which strains have pain relief and anti-inflammatory properties.

I explained all this to Karen, and we set our appointment for my massage. She encouraged me to arrive early if I wanted to consume before our massage began, which I did. While Karen organized her workspace, I sat outside in a small atrium and enjoyed some hits off my vape pen. For those who wish to smoke flower, she has a separate, more discreet area for that. When she was ready for me, I gave her the cannabis-infused topical I brought with me. She explained she would only use the topical on my “problem” areas, not just spread it all over like butter on toast. Karen left the room, I disrobed to my comfort level and lay face-down on her table, and we got started.

I’ve been compared to steel beams, concrete blocks, a tree, etc. by massage therapists in the past. Karen quickly learned how much they weren’t exaggerating. She focused on my upper body, working my neck, shoulder, back and arm muscles. I was very impressed with how well Karen responded to my body’s reactions. She could tell where my biggest problems were located and put a lot of time and effort into loosening my very deep knots. Even with the help of cannabis and cannabis-infused products, I still have knots that are just too deep.

During our session, Karen asked if I was comfortable with cupping. While I am familiar with the practice, it’s one of the few therapies I hadn’t tried yet. This allowed her to give my left side some attention while still treating my problematic right side.

My back after cupping

Obviously, I didn’t go to the beach right after, but I did notice improvement in my mobility and blood flow. With the aid of Karen’s deep-tissue techniques and cannabis products, she was able to work on knots previous massage therapists had long given up on.

When a session is over, Karen is not the type to ask a client to dress, pay, and leave. Granted, she appreciates all these things, but she also encourages her guests to take a few minutes and allow their bodies to adjust to the treatment it just received. Clients can take a few puffs if they choose or simply sit and relax. Rock&Rouge is no day spa, but she’s not going to kick you out the door immediately after a session.


I highly recommend booking a session with Karen or one of her talented therapists. Their rates vary depending on duration, modality, and treatment. Nothing is one-size-fits-all with Rock&Rouge. Everyone’s body is unique and reacts in its own unique way to treatment, whether cannabis is included or not. Rock&Rouge wants to tailor their services to meet each client’s individual needs.┬áRock&Rouge’s services include:


  • Swedish
  • Hot Stone
  • Aromatherapy
  • Deep Tissue
  • Chair Massage
  • Lomi Lomi
  • Prenatal
  • Reiki
  • Structural Integration
  • Energy Optimization Bodywork
  • Cupping
  • Table Thai

Rock&Rouge also has aestheticians on hand to treat acneic, aging, sensitive, and dehydrated skin.

Rock&Rouge Bodywork Venue can be found at 4417 30th St., Ste. 113, in San Diego. You can contact them at (619) 880-7003, rockandrougebodyworkvenue@gmail.com, on Instagram at @rocknrougebodyworkvenue, or via their website.

Have you had a session with Rock&Rouge Bodywork Venue? Let us know how they helped you in the comments below.