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Mechanism: Experimental Approaches to Understanding Acupuncture, Part 1
The clinical benefits of acupuncture are difficult to ignore, but also can be difficult to explain to a Western audience. For nearly 50 years, relentlessly inquisitive scientists and physicians have been working toward a conceptual model to explain acupuncture.
Targeting the Bad Apples in the Bunch
While everyone was focused on the conversion to ICD-10, the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services released a new report on chiropractic titled "CMS Should Use Targeted Tactics to Curb Questionable and Inappropriate Payments for Chiropractic Services."
Your Billing Questions Answered
I hear a lot of the following questions: I am afraid I may doing something illegal. I have heard I cannot have different fees for the same service.
Born to Energize the Human Spirit: Recollections of Sig Miller
Sig Miller, longtime executive director of the Association of New Jersey Chiropractors (ANJC), passed away on Sept. 17 after a long battle with cancer.
Tailor-Made Knee Pain: The Sartorius Muscle
A patient was referred to my office after receiving treatment from various providers with no results. The patient was training for the Olympics as a marathon runner and was unable to run or walk without severe medial knee pain.
Footsteps of the Sages: An Apprenticeship with Dr. Kezhan Zhang
When I met Dr. Kezhen Zhang in May 2013, I was his translator and the integrity, creativity, and passion he demonstrated as a practitioner and advocate of the medicine convinced me to travel to Beijing to study with him.
Pro-Con: Swaddling for Newborns
The practice of swaddling has been used for thousands of years and was popular until the 1700s, when it was slowly abandoned by many cultures that considered it old-fashioned or barbaric.
Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine in the West
We know acupuncture and Oriental medicine as the indigenous medicine of East Asia; in particular China, Korea and Japan are the countries of origin of this wonderful healing system.
Syncretism: Acupuncture and Public Health in Cuba
"Syncretism" is defined as a union of diverse tenets or practices. On a recent trip to Cuba designed to demonstrate the integration of Traditional Medicine and biomedicine, our group witnessed this union firsthand.
Making Sense of an Increasingly Obvious Conclusion
Where's U.S. health care heading? Like it or not, the list of telltale signs is growing to a point that stands out to even the most myopic observer. Consider this list of facts as you look into the future of health care in the United States:
Chinese Herbs and Pulmonary Fibrosis: A Case Study
"Mary M."* recently celebrated her 90th birthday. Even the former sheriff dropped by to kiss the hand of this diminutive retired teacher, to honor the years she interpreted for him during interviews with Latinas and Latinos.
Diagnose Sprain Injuries in MVA Cases With Dynamic X-Rays (Pt. 1)
Am I the only person to notice hospitals are doing a seemingly insufficient job lately in their initial radiological workup of motor vehicle accident (MVA) victims?
Omega-3 Fish Oil: An Underappreciated Element of Men's Health
As a clinician with many male patients -- and as a man myself -- I am all too aware of the fact that we like to convince ourselves that we are doing great, when that may be the farthest thing from the truth.
It's Time to Review
It is amazing to see the changes that are occurring in the acupuncture profession. Let's look at some of the news and events that have contributed to this growth and awareness.
Designing a Fitness Plan (Part 1)
It doesn't matter if you come to my practice for pain relief, weight loss, healthy aging or something else. The formula I talk about for each patient's fitness strategy is pretty much the same.
North Carolina Acupuncture Board Files Dry Needling Lawsuit
In early September, the NCALB filed a complaint against the North Carolina Board of Physical Therapy Examiners over the issue of dry needling, a form of acupuncture that uses solid needles to puncture the skin and muscle tissue to relieve pain.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 2
Acupuncture's cultural and historical roots go back to the emergence of Chinese civilization. For more than 2,000 years, acupuncture needling has been continuously practiced on the largest population in the world.
Too Many to Remember: Tips to Revive Your Ortho / Neuro Test Skills
When I was at Palmer in the mid-1980s, we were given a set of notes in one of our diagnostic courses. The notes covered approximately 70 orthopedic and neurological tests for various regions of the body.
F4CP Making a High-Impact Impression
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has released details of its 2016 strategy, certain elements of which are already in play. The strategy includes ads, posters and other resources available to all F4CP members.
The Modern Application of Ancient Mei Rong
Chinese Medical Cosmetology (Mei Rong) has a well-documented and venerated history dating back to the Qin (221-206 BC) Dynasty.
Dietary Fat and Prostate Cancer: An Important Update
K.M. Di Sebastiano and M. Mourtzakis published a review paper examining the role of dietary fat on prostate cancer development and progression late last year that does a stellar job of summarizing the available data on fat and prostate cancer.
The Concussion-Subluxation Complex
In the Aug. 1, 2014 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic, I reviewed some of the literature demonstrating the role of the chiropractic adjustment in post-concussive care.
One Size Does Not Fit All: Exercise and Nutrition According to Your Yin/Yang Body Type
There are countless new exercise and nutrition plans out there, emphasizing the latest ground-breaking research and claiming to revolutionize the way we view health.
April, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 04
The Third Element of the Great Spa Conversation: Movement
By Robin Zill, LMT
ISPA (the International Spa Association) recognized the importance of exercise and fitness from the beginning: it was originally named the International Spa and Fitness Association.In fact, many of the harbinger consultants and creators of the spa industry have a strong fitness background. This third element is defined as vitality and energy through movement, exercise, stretching and fitness. It includes movement of all forms: aerobic and cardiovascular exercise; dance; yoga; walking meditation; and client movement within the spa space.
The health and fitness boom of the '90s dominated the lifestyles of many in the U.S. and abroad. The desire to live a happier and healthier life wove itself into the American dream. The rise in the popularity of aerobics and other relatively high-impact exercise programs mirrored this passion. Many destination spas adapted their philosophies in kind, changing from spas with an emphasis on weight management to lifestyle spas with a strong emphasis on fitness. It became obvious that the problem with overweight America was not just a matter of counting calories. The real culprit was stress. This became the motivating drive and market niche that would give the spa industry its explosive growth.
Deby Harper of Fitness Company, a pioneer in the fitness movement, articulates this concept well. She says it is not necessarily how much we eat or even exercise that allows us to keep our desired body weight. After all, why do some of us retain weight while others stay slim, regardless of our diet or exercise? According to Harper, our brain prescribes a powerful chemical called cortisol when stressed. In response to cortisol, the body takes action:
These responses to stress are rooted deep in our genes, according to Dr. Robert Eliot, co-founder of the Institute of Stress Medicine in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Our bodies are designed to react to stress as a survival strategy. Our daily stress triggers are sometimes rooted in emotional and mental challenges - conflicts that can be abstract. Paying the bills, professional competition, relationship issues, and raising children all add to our stress. Although it may seem like a good idea to wrestle your boss down to the ground if you disagree with him/her, it is no longer socially acceptable. Exercise is a better outlet for this physical expression. Not only does it give us a release, it gives us the added benefits of increased endorphins, a natural mood elevator.
Many of us in the massage industry (at least the "older/wiser" generation) would not be considered fanatics about our weight and looks. But as we age, the desire to age gracefully with less pain becomes more and more appealing. We recognize the need to stay healthy, fit, and productive as well as be role models for our clients. A 2001 ISPA study by Cox Consulting points out that 88% of spa goers get a massage, and 56% participate in some type of fitness or sports activity.
From bungi jumping to wall climbing, water yoga, kickboxing, hiking and even tap dancing, spas are leading the way in bringing exercise and movement to their customers. Spas are on the cutting edge of new trends for exercise and movement. ISPA embraced this new trend by identifying a new type of spa membership: the club spa. A club spa is defined as a company that operates a facility whose primary purpose is fitness, but that offers a variety of professionally administered spa services on a day-use basis. This category is rising quickly: according to the ISPA Spa Industry Study (August 2000), there are 423 club spas in the United States. Together, club spas average 12.1 million visits per year, which places club spas between day spas and resort/hotel spas in ranking of total visitors.
The club spa has some unique characteristics. Like the day spa, clients come in on a regular basis and are community-based. Multi-use rooms that provide a variety of massage, spa body and facial services have proven to be very effective and profitable. With a built-in consumer base to draw from, spa services can be test marketed and catered directly to the needs of the membership. ISPA Executive Director Lynne McNees comments:
Usually, salon services are not a requirement, but can be found in the larger club spa. Just as the day spa industry boomed, I believe we can expect the same to happen for the club spa.
Our market is changing at a fast pace. New terminology and new concepts are needed to meet the needs of our market and new integrated health paradigm. Futurists now project that 50% of the population will be over the age of 50 by the year 2005. Debra Smith, from Smith Club and Spa Specialists, predicts that more than ever, fitness and new movement therapies that emphasize balance and integration will be woven into the spa experience. People do not want to risk injury; they want to build stability and strength. Consequently, the next wave of fitness activities will feature systems like Pilates, yoga and tai chi, which are considered core therapies. These programs emphasize the mind, body, spirit and emotional needs of the client.
The new PFS (Personal Fitness Assessment) is just such a tool. New behavioral research indicates that the most effective exercisers are those who understand themselves, both their strengths and weaknesses, so they can develop strategies to meet the demands of their fitness program. If you have a hard time getting motivated to exercise or determining what exercise program is right for you (or a client), you may want to try the new PFS personality assessment program. It is designed to give you insight into what motivates, frustrates, and helps you get the most out of a workout. Another professional consideration for today's massage therapist would be to consider becoming a yoga or Pilates instructor. It would be an excellent synthesis of two languages that help to re-educate and re-align the body though a mind-body-spirit connection -- helping make you that much more employable.
The last important quality about movement in the context of the third domain is the actual process of how a client moves from one space to another in your spa. The layout of the spa should be simple and easy to navigate. From reception, to locker room, to waiting areas, to the actual treatment room(s), gentle and easy client movement is critical to a good spa experience. It is all about flow. The third element dovetails here with environment, climate and touch. People get nervous and stressed if they do not know where to go. If possible, it is still best to escort a client to the next treatment.
Good signage, repeated directions, and clear instructions regarding how clients get on and off the table, especially on wet tables where the client is more vulnerable, are all essential to creating a great spa experience. From the minute they walk through the door, you are taking your clients on a journey. Make each step count and be memorable. Please feel free to contact me! Your voice is important.
Click here for previous articles by Robin Zill, LMT.
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