resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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?
Connecting the Dots
In 2002, I published a book on patient examination procedures that included information on the procedural coding of the recommended examinations. The book should have been published in 2000, but I had trouble finding a publisher. Why?
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.
Mind-Body in Motion
A central goal of low back pain treatment involves the correction of dysfunctional movement patterns believed to be responsible for spinal overload.
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.
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!
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.
News in Brief
An Encouraging Sign at Palmer; NBCE Announces Retirement of Longtime Director of Testing.
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.
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.
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.
Acupuncture and Homeopathy: Bioenergetic Brothers
Acupuncture and homeopathy share an important healing principle: bioenergetics. "Bio" means "life," so bioenergetics is literally "life energy."
Let's Speak With One Voice in 2015
For the longest time, the chiropractic profession has attempted to achieve some form of unity. On a political level, this was characterized by an ultimately unsuccessful two-year merger effort between ACA and ICA leadership from 1986-1988.
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.
Help Your Parents Stay Engaged
As much as parents may wish it were so, children do not come with an instruction manual. There's no "how to" that can be followed and no two children are alike, so what works with one generally won't work with the next.
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.
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.
Leaving Footprints on Capitol Hill: Tribute to Dr. Kenneth Luedtke (1930-2014)
It was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Dr. Ken Luedtke.
Unlevel Pelvis in the High-School Athlete: Exploring Causes and Effects
The unlevel pelvis is all too common in the high-school athlete and if not detected, will likely cause a lifetime of musculoskeletal issues. Any provider who doesn't look for this common finding is missing critical information.
Cell Health (Part 2)
Dr. Barsten, your book is about restoring "cell vitality." Can you briefly define the term? Cell vitality is more than the mere absence of symptoms or pathology, but optimum structural, physiological and energetic health.
September, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 09
Beyond the Rub
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
It is time to put heart back into massage. When I started the series of columns on failing massage education, I first documented the failing, then proposed several suggestions I believe could improve massage education.Most of my suggestions involved imposing additional government regulation on the profession in general, and on massage schools in particular. This is probably necessary in the short run. However, government is always the worst way to do anything except maybe to fight wars and collect taxes. Texas massage therapist David Lauterstein, RMT, says it well:
Once government establishes a minimum, that minimum also becomes the maximum. Why do more than you have to? While a few will strive for excellence, most will attempt to barely meet the minimum standard. I have observed several states before and after licensing. Before licensing, there were one or two good schools and one or two lousy schools. A few years after licensing, there were one or two good schools and dozens of lousy schools. Is this the desired result? I hope not!
It finally dawned on me that what has been lost in all the clamor is heart. The heart of massage is being lost Massage has the potential to be the premier wellness modality in health care. Wholism is the birthright of American massage therapy (as well as being just "good science.") The current medical emphasis in massage, and the emphasis on energy work freed of any logical constraints, seems a great loss in so many respects. Both paradigms sell the potential of massage/bodywork short. Most energy work has such little grounding in the physical sciences that it achieves no consistent results beyond the parasympathetic response of laying down in a calm environment for awhile. The medical emphasis usually focuses on nothing more than "rub here for this and there for that." It is usually taught with emphasis on insurance billing (drooling for dollars) and acceptance by the gods of the sickness sciences. Neither have much heart or wholism.
If we focus on sickness, we will have more and more sickness. That is the way the universe works. The allopathic sickness system has not lessened the amount of sickness by studying it. In fact, it has increased sickness, irregardless what it may have done for lifespan. The focus needs to be put on wellness. Until we study wellness with the fervor we study sickness, we will never achieve wellness. Since there is more money to be made treating sickness than in curing it, wellness will never be a priority in the allopathic system.
The same is true for massage education. If we put our focus on its failures, we will have more and more failure. If we concentrate on low quality, we will achieve it. If we study incompetence, we will have more and more incompetence. It is time to put our focus on excellence. Right now our emphasis is on competence. Competence is a lowest common denominator process. Our current system of regulation and national certification is a lowest common denominator standard. The results show it is not working. It is time to focus on and strive for excellence. David Lauterstein again puts this so well:
Greg Lawton, DC, of the American Medical Massage Association (AMMA), puts it another way:
To me, all this comes back to heart. If you are truly working from the heart, you will, out of love and compassion for your fellow human beings do the absolute best you can. You will never be satisfied with your level of knowledge and skill. Just learning to rub will not be enough. Just teaching others to rub will not be enough. Your desire to help others will drive you to study both the physical and the non-physical sciences. It will lead you to study holistic health. It will drive you to practice the principles of holistic health in your own life, so you can be an inspiring and motivational example to others, especially your patients and students. Heart will guide you to strive for excellence. It will not stand for incompetence or even just competence, either in yourself or the profession.
We need a lot more heart in massage education if we ever hope to move beyond the rub.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB.
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