resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
We Get Letters & E-Mail
We Have Come a Long Way – But There's a Long Way to Go; Grounded and Connected.
Old TCM Sayings: Treat the Front to Treat the Back
Chinese medicine college was, and always will be, a memorable time. It was a time of massive personal and professional growth.
A New Era of Injury Awareness Means a New Focus on Prevention
Despite a dramatic Super Bowl last month, the National Football League has taken quite a few hits lately concerning player injuries, particularly concussions.
Put the Social Back Into Social Media
Social media is more than a passing fad, it is definitely here to stay. Social media apps and channels of distribution may evolve, but the concept of social media is now big business and a part of all our lives.
Adjusting the Occiput on the Atlas
You may never see a particular set of patients in your office – the ones who are either afraid of neck adjustments or have had a bad experience. A vast majority of those who had a bad experience did not have a life-threatening vascular event.
The Top Seven Website Mistakes Clinics Make
The majority of acupuncture clinics finally have a website for their business. Having a website is crucial for being found online through Google, Facebook and review sites like Yelp.
What's Triggering That Point?
An orthopedic friend recently saw a patient of mine. He felt an injection of a trigger point (TP) at the upper trapezius and surrounding areas was necessary, since that was the patient's area of chief complaint and there was a tender, radiating nodule.
Joint Supplements for Athletes (Part 1)
Maintaining joint health should be a daily focus for athletes. Joint health is a complex issue for everyone, but for athletes it poses a greater concern.
Neuroscience: Where Western Medicine and Chinese Medicine Can Come Together
The recent advances in neuroscience are truly incredible. With this expansion of scientific knowledge, I would like to see even more research into the neuroscientific basic of acupuncture and Chinese Medicine.
Finding Balance in the Clinic
This past December, I celebrated 11 years in practice. I seriously don't know where the time went. I feel beyond blessed and grateful to be practicing our profound and beautiful medicine and to be helping guide my patients restore a state of optimal health.
The Easy Way to Learn How to Document ICD-10
The 2015 Work Plan for the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) includes a focus on chiropractic services. This means chiropractors can expect to see more audits and reviews in the coming year because private payers pay attention to the OIG's focus as well.
Reflections: The Art of Teaching Asian Medicine
Over the past three decades, my global workshops have been translated into German, Swiss German, French, Romansch, Spanish, Lithuanian and Xhosa. Time to offer you new teachers a few tips!
Case Histories from Bali: Treating Balinese Chidren with TCB and Shonishin
When I moved to the island of Bali in 2005, I offered my services in Bumi Sehat, which means Healthy Mother Earth, a free birthing center for poor and disadvantaged local women located in Ubud.
Acupuncture and Homeopathy: Bioenergetic Brothers
Acupuncture and homeopathy share an important healing principle: bioenergetics. "Bio" means "life," so bioenergetics is literally "life energy."
Connections Worth Making
"If most doctors are like me, [they are] isolated physically and professionally. I do not make the time to connect with other doctors and also a lot of doctors do not want to be connected for a lot of reasons. Dynamic Chiropractic keeps me grounded and connected.
Leg Length and Pelvic Fixations
A common component of low back pain is sacroiliac joint dysfunction. Signs of SIJ dysfunction can include fixation with reduced range of motion, and localized pain or joint laxity and inflammation.
Online Efforts That Convert Traffic Into Patients
Most chiropractors are using "dinner with the doc," "refer a friend," customer appreciation days, grand openings, health fairs, chamber of commerce meetings, and other networking events to get new patients.
The Conscious Evolution of Healing, Part 2
The idea of transmission is very important in the Chinese medical classics. According to author Claude Larre, the ancient Chinese were highly interested in the connection between things. Nothing was looked at as an isolated entity.
It's Time to Create a Strong Acupuncture Footprint
Footprints in the sand. Footprints in the snow. Where do these footprints go? Some are big, some are small, but footprints are made by all.
Are You Really a Healthy Eater?
I always giggle a little bit (to myself) when someone comes into my office and informs me that they are a healthy eater. What exactly does that mean? Does that mean they eat sugar in moderation? And what's that, exactly?
It might have been a miserable start to the day in the heart of downtown San Diego. A heavy rain had soaked the large homeless population congregating near the intersection of Third Avenue and Ash Street as they waited for a free breakfast to be served at the First Lutheran Church on the corner.
January, 2001, Vol. 01, Issue 01
By Steve Capellini, LMT
Author's note: The Spa Letters column features news, personality profiles, trends, and plenty of professional possibilities for LMTs in the spa industry. The style is epistolary, meaning the articles are letters to a fictional massage therapist friend.
Thanks for writing.I'm glad to hear you're interested in exploring spas and perhaps even joining me one day in some professional capacity in this industry. As you know, spas are sprouting up all over the place, and the opportunities are boundless. We need lots of good therapists with diverse skills to fill a growing number of positions, both hands-on and supervisory. I've known several massage therapists who have successfully navigated the spa waters, ending up as spa directors, owners or educators themselves.
First, though, before you get all excited about your wildly successful new career, I want to fill you in about what spas used to be like not too long ago when I first started in the industry, and so I'll tell you a little story...
It was a day like any other day at the Safety Harbor Spa in Clearwater, Florida. Bob, the supervisor of the men's spa, rang an old ship's bell attached to one wall in the locker room - GONG - and soon a ragtag line of two dozen elderly gentlemen in worn terrycloth robes began shuffling down a long corridor on their way to the massage room. I could hear the sound of cheap paper slippers sliding on tile; grunts and groans as the men disrobed and climbed aboard massage tables arranged in rows in one large room; and the "squirt-squirt" of mineral oil slipping out of plastic bottles. Ribald jokes tossed across the room during the 25-minute full-body massage sessions. Then robes again; paper slippers; GONG; and the whole thing was repeated 12-14 times a day.
Yes, Lou, many spas were in this sorry condition when I started as a therapist myself in 1984.
At that time, no one had heard of a day spa. There were barely 30 destination spas in the country, and they were often called "fat farms."
Now, at the beginning of 2001, this industry has changed so dramatically that it bears practically no resemblance to those not-too-distant days. Over 300 resort and destination spas dot the landscape, and day spas number in the thousands. Did you know that spa visits account for more vacation dollars spent than ski trips in the U.S.? It's true - I heard it as part of the Price Waterhouse industry analysis at the recent International Spa Association (ISPA) conference in Vegas. Remind me to tell you more about ISPA in another letter.
There are a ton of letters I want to write to you about the spa industry and how you might get involved. I'm sure you have lots of questions: How much can you expect to be paid as a therapist in a spa? How can you increase your chances of getting hired? Will you receive continuing education as part of your employment? Should you consider opening your own small spa on a tight budget? What kind of equipment should you buy? Should you hire a consultant? What kind of profits can you expect? What are the definitions of the various types of spas? How can you travel the world some day working in exotic foreign spas or on cruise ship spas? Where can you find a medically oriented spa that hires skilled therapists? Are there any standards for training or education within the industry?
In future letters, I'll be delving into these and many other topics.
To start off, let me briefly fill you in on a few of the trends you might be interested in that are shaping the spa industry: medical spas, spa branding, and becoming a spa entrepreneur.
The Slow-But-Steady Merging of Medicine and Spas
Not too long ago, many massage therapists working in spas found themselves the victims of snide remarks about the low quality of bodywork done in those establishments. The words "pampering" and "fluff" were thrown about with gusto. There are still some remnants of this attitude left in the massage community today. Even though such disparaging remarks aren't used so often anymore, other words, like the word "spa" itself, take their place, as in "Oh, he just does spa massage," with an ugly emphasis on the word "spa."
Believe me, this is changing rapidly. There is a new respect for therapists who work in spas now, in large part due to the merging of the spa world with the world of medicine. Did you know that hundreds of doctors are opening their own medical spas, and thousands more will in the near future? I've been working at the Pritikin Longevity Center in Florida this past year because they are building a spa into their well-recognized medical program.
Everybody is getting on the spa bandwagon, and as more physicians join the party, it will continue to add legitimacy to the work we therapists do in conjunction with them there.
The Branding of Spas
Pretty soon spas are going to be as common as restaurants. You can already see it happening, as the larger established spas like Canyon Ranch and The Golden Door begin to expand beyond their original facilities into hotels, resorts and satellite spas in all sorts of locations. The growth we've seen will look infinitesimal compared to what's going to happen. It's a great time to get involved with the industry right now.
Even though spas are becoming big business, that doesn't mean there isn't plenty of room for the motivated and inspired entrepreneur to use some creative visualization and hard work to construct the spa of his or her dreams. I can guarantee you that's exactly what's happening all over the country right now. I go all over the place teaching workshops for LMTs who dream of opening their own smaller spas, and I've been constantly encouraged to see them succeeding. Whether it's a one-room operation or a more challenging project with a dozen rooms and as many employees, I see massage therapists taking the reigns and making their spa dreams into "nitty-gritty" business reality. Healing spas are something they can believe in and put all of their effort into. It's not easy to make it happen, but the rewards can be profound, and there is a large network of support out there for people trying to make it happen.
That's what I'd like to give you in every letter I send support; direction; new contacts; new ideas; and new ways to dream. Keep letting me know how you're doing!
Until then, take care,
Steve Capellini, LMT
Click here for previous articles by Steve Capellini, LMT.
Join the conversation
Comments are encouraged, but you must follow our User Agreementcomments powered by Disqus
Keep it civil and stay on topic. No profanity, vulgar, racist or hateful comments or personal attacks. Anyone who chooses to exercise poor judgement will be blocked. By posting your comment, you agree to allow MPA Media the right to republish your name and comment in additional MPA Media publications without any notification or payment.