resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
Understanding and Identifying Pediatric Growth-Plate Fractures
In general, fractures in children heal well with little intervention as long as the alignment is good. Fractures involving the growth plate, however, are a different issue. In fact, growth-plate injuries are the primary reason for the subspecialty of pediatric orthopedics.
Healing With TCM at San Quentin State Prison
For the prisoners at San Quentin State Prison, life-sentences are the reality of every day life. It is not often that prisoners get the opportunity to use alternative medicine to deal with common ailments they encounter behind bars such as, depression, anxiety and pain.
The Heart Protector
On the physical level, the Pericardium is a double-layered sac of fibrous tissue that envelops the Heart. The space between the layers is filled with serous fluid that protects the Heart from external shock or trauma and lubricates to allow for normal Heart movement.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
The Wonders of Light Therapy: An Interview with Wes Burwell
I first met Wes Burwell in 2011 when he was teaching a class on light. Since then, every time I hear him speak, his understanding of the benefits, function and capacity of light has evolved.
Pulse Diagnosis: What We Know
I am still finding pearls of wisdom from the books and papers that I inherited from my pulse diagnosis mentor Jim Ramholz.
5 Ways to Occupy Occupational Health
Despite the progress that has been made to better protect workers, occupational health and safety remains a priority area for many national governmental organizations due to the widespread problem of occupationally related morbidity and mortality.
AOMA Strengthens Leadership Team
AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine, a leading college of acupuncture & herbal medicine, announced the appointment of Donna LaPoint Hurta, MBA as the new VP of Finance & Operations this Fall.
Transparency and Accountability: Q&A With the CCE
Every profession needs an organization dedicated to upholding the quality and integrity of its degree programs and educational institutions.
Talking to Patients About Healthy Aging
I've noticed that a particular category of patients seems to make up more and more of my practice – they work out, but still experience lots of degenerative joint disease (DJD) issues.
Help Patients Achieve Optimal Vitamin D Levels
Much research has been done on vitamin D levels and their impact on health; optimal levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of developing numerous conditions.
Lime Jello on Morphine
Taste is in the eyes... actually the mouth... of the beholder. My food preferences have changed, lightening from the food of my youth. My parents loved heavy eastern European cuisine and I loved it as a child. Now I enjoy leaner, healthier whole foods.
Saying No to Medicine
An interesting article recently appeared in Men's Journal titled "When to Say No to Your Doctor." The article begins with the summary statement above and effectively arms readers with information that will help them "take more responsibility for your own health care, because you can't be sure anyone else is.
Web Marketing: Content Is King
Google's sweeping updates to its search algorithms over the past few years have brought a paradigm shift in how you can optimize your chiropractic website to gain maximum marketing leverage.
Simple Ways To Find True Happiness
Patients in our clinics are always seeking happiness. As their health advocate, we need to ensure we inform them that in order to find happiness, they have to make sure to identify what makes them happy in the first place.
Jingei Diagnosis: An Effective and Powerful Diagnostic
I graduated from the Kotatama Institute under the direction of Drs. Masahilo and Katsuharu Nakazono in 1984. As a student, I was exposed to the practice of most of the various theories and modalites of Oriental Medicine.
The Tao of Gender
If you think gender is as simple as having a new client check off the "male" or "female" box on your intake form, we hope this article will expand your understanding and thus the reach of your health care.
Blaming the Gluteus Medius, Overlooking the Deltoid
The gluteus medius (Gmed) is commonly written about, strengthened and blamed for many conditions, and rightfully so. After all, the Gmed plays a role in pelvic stability, hip motor control and lower-quarter dynamic movements.
Managing Patient Expectations About Acupuncture
Last year, I attended the Pacific Symposium in San Diego for the first time in six or seven years. It was the 25th anniversary of this event, and on one evening there was a panel discussion with the title; "What is Qi?."
To The Finish Line With the Help of TCM
When acupuncturist Eddy De Smedt pursued a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine, he knew he wanted to make a difference.
February, 2001, Vol. 01, Issue 02
Attention to Learning
By Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB
The last couple of weeks, I have succumbed to the pleasures of revisiting some long fallow kinesthetic roots. When I was a graduate student in physics, I started taking massage and dance classes to enforce some sense of balance in my life. Surprisingly, many of the movements required to massage effectively seemed intuitive to me. Years later, when I began teaching massage, I realized the reason. There had been a period when, for much the same reasons of balancing life, I had baked the majority of the bread I consumed.
I learned to move with my whole body to knead the bread, rather than relying only on the easily fatigued intrinsic muscles of my hands and forearms. I developed a relaxed and steady tempo that allowed me to maul the dough into its required elasticity without tiring. I also developed my sense of touch, to feel the subtle changes in texture that occurred as the dough neared the point at which it was ready for its first rising.
Thinking back, as I recently made bread once again, I acknowledged that my first massage "instructor" used no words, but nonetheless gave me much feedback. From a behaviorist viewpoint, my attention and efforts were rewarded and reinforced by the bread I ate and shared with friends. When I began to learn massage, these neuromuscular patterns were already in place to transfer to a new and equally rewarding application.
What this story exemplifies for me is the diversity of kinesthetic and interpersonal skills that we bring to our first formal massage class. Both skills of interpersonal awareness and communication and those that require learning movement patterns can be transferred to new applications. Our minds and bodies don't care that we originally learned such skills for another purpose. Often, we learned them early and use them without being conscious of that use or of when we practiced and perfected them. In thinking of such skills as innate or intuitive, we fail to acknowledge those who modeled and reinforced them, in some instances before we had words capable of expressing our gratitude. We also fail to remember the amount of attention, awareness, and practice that was required of us. Returning our awareness to these early lessons allows us a model for what we already do well, and for extending our learning in new directions and to new depths.
Stages of Competence
Robert Jolles is a trainer of trainers for Xerox. In his book How to Run Seminars and Workshops, he presents a model for the stages of learning a new skill. The four stages are unconscious incompetence, conscious incompetence, conscious competence, and unconscious competence. Following this model, in the beginning we are unaware that we don't have a skill in place, and may also be unaware of our need for the skill. As we progress, we become aware that we need a skill and that we haven't mastered it. We then turn our focus and attention to learning and practicing the skill. Sometimes someone breaks it down into small increments for us; sometimes we practice the whole of what we see demonstrated as best we can. As we practice, we begin to learn new perceptions and motor skills that can add further refinements to practice. At last, when we consciously think about it, the skill is ours to use, and with more use and practice, the skill becomes natural and we begin to use it unconsciously. We have progressed through the learning stage, but over time will have to bring our attention back to it again and again to adapt to changing conditions, regain proficiency after a lapse of use, and keep current with new innovations.
Awareness Follows Attention
Learning occurs by becoming aware of interactions we previously did not perceive, and by consciously practicing movements until they become part of our kinesthetic vocabulary. In perception, awareness follows attention. As we consciously remind ourselves to attend to what our sense of touch is telling us as we massage a classmate or client, our awareness of differences in shape and tissue texture sharpens. As we consciously attend to nuances in others' gestures and body postures, our abilities to consciously be aware of the communications we are receiving increases. We can enhance our nonverbal perceptions by exposure, such as watching a movie with the sound off or observing the body motions of those con receiving increases. We can enhance our nonverbal perceptions by exposure, such as watching a movie with the sound off or observing the body motions of those conversing in a coffeehouse. Finally, as we practice movements with attention, we become aware of what we tried and what resulted. When we observe ourselves and noncritically note the results, we allow ourselves to learn new kinesthetic vocabulary short, habitual patterns of movement and balance that are the basis for our abilities to walk, dance, ski, play a musical instrument, and practice massage.
As we learn and practice, the behaviors and skills that are reinforced by our environment and our internal values take hold, as they did in our early lives. Given motivation and a gentle hand, there are few limits to what we can accomplish via the direction of our attention.
Click here for previous articles by Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB.
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