resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?."
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.
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 X Factor in Clinical Research: The Patient
It was the great baseball legend, former New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra – he of countless aphorisms, each with a mind-bending twist – who once declared, "You can observe a lot by watching."
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.
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.
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.
December, 2001, Vol. 01, Issue 12
How People Learn
By Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB
Like those who dress as giant salmon and run the San Francisco Bay-to-Breakers from finish to start, I sometimes find myself going against the accepted flow. The impetus this time was provided by a colleague's statement attributing the growth in the use of massage to a certain "standard of training," and also expressing a fear that all of the "good work" could be undone by a loosening of standards.
While I am a staunch supporter of using marketing and public education to reach out and touch as widely as we can with massage, I believe that both the credit and the fear are unfounded. Even more akin to my symbolic salmon, I believe that much of the current push for "standards of training" is founded on a flawed educational model of how we learn.
The Foundation on which Massage Has Grown
Statistics on sports participation indicate that one of the most important trends to begin in the 1960s was "a new focus on self-fulfillment and a heightened awareness in self-improvement - an outgrowth of which was a budding awareness of personal health and physical fitness."1 This shift in attitude entered the mainstream in the 1970s, resulting in the running boom at the end of that decade with a subsequent spread into other activities. The overall growth of physical activity participation flattened in the 1990s, with activities in health clubs growing at the expense of other venues. In short, during the 1990s there was a shift toward seeking external motivation and facilitation, a shift synergistic with increased utilization of massage. Couple this with the observation that 23% of current health club members are at least 55 years old, a 379% increase since 1987.2
There were two other concurrent cultural themes that I believe changed attitudes in ways that had major positive impacts on massage utilization in the United States. The first was that U.S. athletic organizations were forced to respond, however reactively, to the widespread use of massage by foreign competitors. The second was the dramatic increase in sports participation by girls and women following the 1972 enactment of Title IX.10,11 To a great extent, growth in massage has ridden on the groundswell of the increasing number of women with a positive history of physical activity, and the shift in expectations that they have created.
Teaching for Understanding
There are those who advocate the requirement of a seemingly ever-increasing number of hours of education as a prerequisite to entering the massage profession. If the motivation for this advocacy is to produce corresponding increases in practitioner competency, such requirements are of sadly limited benefit. Educational research over the past 20-30 years compellingly demonstrates that learning in the classroom context often leads not to usable understanding, but only to the ability to successfully answer test questions 3,6,7,8,9. Study after study has found that, by and large, even the best students in the best schools can't take knowledge learned in one setting and apply it appropriately in a different setting.3,4,9
Within the academic setting, students can learn to be successful with short-term memorization and use of "right-answer" cues. In contrast, actual practice requires very limited memorization of facts. The massage practitioner must have the deeper understanding required to find information as needed and then to be able to use it to make therapy decisions in the face of ambiguity. Research indicates that the environment that seems best able to foster the understanding leading to usability has much in common with traditional apprenticeships.7,8 In the modern cognitive apprenticeship, however, it is not just the tasks but the thinking underlying them that must be made "visible" and reflected upon.5
Such apprenticeships can be created within the context of traditional schools. A modular, tiered program can move the student into early practice, while providing resources for the ongoing training and dialog that passes the context of expertise from teacher/mentors to increasingly skillful practitioners. There should be a progression of successively more difficult tasks within the conceptual scaffolding and coaching provided by the mentors. Testing should not be concerned with memorization and regurgitation but with the student's ability, on being presented with the relevant data, to choose between conclusions that can be drawn from it.8 Within the profession of massage, it is time that we base our training requirements on 21st century insights of how people learn.
Click here for previous articles by Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB.
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.