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Knee Pain From the Kinetic Chain
As practitioners of manual medicine, chiropractors often treat patients suffering from knee pain.
A Guide for Talking to Doctors about Acupuncture and Brain Chemistry
Before I begin any discussion of how to talk about the effects of acupuncture on brain chemistry, nervous and endocrine function, it is essential to understand just what physicians most need help with.
Peer Points: Always Seeking To Grow
Ellen "Kiki" Geary has spent the last decade honing her craft. As a specialist in integrative holistic care, she went straight from completing her master's degree in acupuncture and chinese herbal medicine from Bastyr University to building a successful and thriving practice in the small community of Anacortes, Washington.
Immunizations by Colorado DCs: Really?
You probably didn't hear about it, but back on Nov. 21, 2013, the Board of Directors of the Colorado Chiropractic Association (CCA) adopted "immunization authority" for Colorado DCs as its No. 2 legislative goal.
By the Numbers: 3 Common Financial Mistakes With Major Consequences
Warren Buffett is on record for sharing the hidden art of becoming wealthy and making it simple enough for anyone to grasp.
A History Worth Telling
The popularity and the use of acupuncture for the treatment of animals in the United States is at its peak.
Fibromyalgia: Put the Pain in Its Place
While some fibromyalgia patients respond favorably to regular chiropractic care, others experience minimal relief. Unfortunately, many of these patients must rely on pharmacological management to relieve their constant pain.
Building From the Bottom Up
I caught up with my dear friend Honora Wolfe, in her Colorado painting studio where, if she is not praying in Bhutan or doing charitable work in a Nepali free clinic, she spends most of her time now.
The Science of Stretching
In 1986, Rob DeCastella set a course record by running the Boston Marathon in 2:07:51, just 39 seconds off the world record.
New Medical Technologies You Need to Know
We're all familiar with how fast computers become obsolete, as well as the rapid pace of development in the field of cell phone technology. The latest smart phones are far more powerful than desktop computers were only a few years ago.
Are You a Bad Chiropractic Patient?
My father was a great DC. In fact, as you might expect, he was the doctor of chiropractic I measured all other doctors against. Sadly, he died at age 61 when I was in my early 30s.
Why You Should Include the Single-Leg Stance Test in Every Patient Assessment
The single-leg stance (SLS) test, also known as the single-limb stance test, unipedal stance test or one-legged stance / balance test, is often used in the geriatric population to assess static postural and balance control.
Finders Keepers: The Secret to Relationship-Based Marketing
Becoming a successful practitioner has less to do with what you learned in school, and more to do with your ability to find new patients and keep them!
Curbing Label Overwhelm
For the average consumer, reading a food package can be overwhelming: natural, organic, non-GMO, gluten free, free range ... you get the picture.
Vaccines and Chiropractic: Evidence-Based Medicine or Medical Dogma?
Right or wrong, the chiropractic profession has historically been against vaccinations. However, a growing trend within the profession is seeking to reverse this position.
Coding for the Subluxation: ICD-9 vs. ICD-10
When I attended chiropractic school, I was taught that chiropractors approach health care differently than the traditional medical establishment.
Physical Exam 101: The Hands
I am sure you are familiar with the old adage: "When the only tool in your toolbox is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail."
Remembering Clarence Gonstead and 50 Years of the Gonstead Clinic
Dr. Clarence Selmer Gonstead (1898-1978) took chiropractic practice from back-alley bone setting to an understandable biomechanical science. His life was dedicated to clinical competency.
A Chinese Medicine Story: An Interview with Mazin Al-Khafaji
Mazin Al-Khafaji's work has interested me for years. In February 2014, we invited him for the second time to speak at the Southwest Symposium in Austin, Texas.
January, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 01
Myth and Magic
By Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB
In ages past, the rhythms of our ancestors' lives were bound closely to the changing cycle of the seasons. The coming of the New Year was linked with celebration of the winter solstice, the point in the progression of celestial events that marks both the shortest day and the birth of hope that a new spring will come. Anglo-Celtic mythology metaphorically portrays the cycle of seasons as a recurring conflict between the Holly King, who reigns during the half-year of waning sunlight, and his brother the Oak King, who reigns during the half-year of waxing sunlight. In their midwinter clash, the Holly King yields to the Oak King, even as the old sun dies so that the new sun can be reborn. As deep winter approaches, the Holly King withdraws into contemplation. Within his chalice, he nurtures the nascent new sun, and perhaps sees visions and dreams of the year to come.10
Such shared myths as the Holly King encapsulate the themes by which a society makes sense of and responds to the world around it. Whether or not a myth has literal truth is often irrelevant to this metaphorical function. Similarly, we also share family myths and create personal myths to help us organize and make sense of the progression of our own lives. 1,3,4,6 Because our attitudes and responses towards life take form within our internal stories, our personal myths can be both powerful and limiting. Often enacted at an unconscious level, they can separate us from the vitality of our embodied life or allow us to fully experience and draw upon that vitality. In the process, our personal myths set the underlying tone of our emotions and mental imagery. These emotions and imagery, in turn, profoundly affect our health and bodily comfort. 2,9
Among the conceptual difficulties in trying to approach the efficacy of massage and bodywork in the medical sense are the myriad ways in which we can, simply by presence and touch, influence internal life scripts, mental imagery, sensation, and even sense of identity. We deal not with simple cause and effect. Instead, we interact within the ever-changing flow of complex patterns of feedback. The concepts of personal myth and imagery outlined above provide a helpful perspective. Such thoughts are furthered by recent research into phantom limb pain that has led to a hypothesis that the brain contains widely distributed neural networks that create an image of self through genetic programs and memories of past experience. Afferent inputs act on this neuromatrix and produce output patterns that lead to the report of pain. 5,7 What emerges is a view of the body as a system, with a memory that accepts and responds to sensory input, but does not necessarily directly echo it in form or timing.
The Celts viewed liminal (threshold) times and places -- times and places that are neither this nor that but contain a protean element of confusion and chaos -- as holding great potential for creation and change. The Chinese ideogram for crisis also succinctly captures this belief, being made up of the two symbols for danger and opportunity. Perhaps within our practice of bodywork, we learn to elicit the creation of such liminal moments of chaos and reorganization - a threshold or pause in what was a constant state of dysfunction that allows a client to move themselves towards wholeness and a new homeostasis. Our inputs of touch, sensation, and presence may well affect personal myth, imagery, emotion, and neurological state, facilitating such a reorganization of body and spirit. While this viewpoint is largely conjectural, it is conjecture firmly grounded in current concepts of human physiology and its web of interconnections.
Within ourselves, we have the need to create myths for our lives and work that provide us with the opportunity to experience and express wonder and marvel and to seek and find renewal. When these qualities flow into our work, they are conveyed and perceptible to our clients. As we enter into this New Year, there is no better way to promote your excitement with your practice of massage and to work out the creation of your own myth and magic.
Click here for previous articles by Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB.
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