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?
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.
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.
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.
Acupuncture and Homeopathy: Bioenergetic Brothers
Acupuncture and homeopathy share an important healing principle: bioenergetics. "Bio" means "life," so bioenergetics is literally "life energy."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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'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.
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.
The CDC came out with a report in March 2013 that suggests 1 in 50 children will be diagnosed somewhere on the autism spectrum – significantly higher than the 1 in 86 figure that came out in 2007. What does this mean moving forward, particularly for children?
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.
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.
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.
November, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 11
The 10th Element: Time, Space and Rhythms
By Robin Zill, LMT
The 10 Elements of the Spa Experience are designed to teach the consumer and professional about the integrated nature of the spa experience. This is the 11th article in a 12-part series and focuses on the 10th of the 10 elements: Time, Space and Rhythms.To view a graphic representation of the 10 elements, click here.
There is a unique time to sleep, eat, wake and rejoice for each of us. The 10th element weaves together three elusive concepts: time, space and rhythms. It is defined as the perception of space and time and its relationship to natural cycles and rhythms. The study of the wholeness of the human experience within the context of our environment, and our relationship to space and time, is not a new one. Ancient cultures and great religions have studied the patterns of wo(man)kind for thousands of years. The circular aspect of time has survived through the Aruyvedic teachings, the Chinese Five-Element theory, and the Native American MedicineWheel. All of these circles convey a sense of seasonality, ofrhythm as people move through the brief time they have here on earth. They also emphasize the importance of the environment, the space in which that individual resides. The 10th element represents our effort to capture this dynamic and relate it to the spa experience.
This element makes up the circumference of the 10 Element Circle. I like to think of it as a vessel that holds all of the elements together, giving form to our discussion. The relationship between time, space and rhythms highlights the dynamic interplay between the physical life and the spiritual life; the visible and the invisible. Time and space are "invisible" and relative, yet how we think about them reflects the elusive, existential quality of who we are. It is crucially linked with the fifth element, Integration, located in the center of the circle. A greater understanding of time, space and rhythms helps us integrate the elements of the spa experience. Essentially, the 10th element is about transcendence of self.
Before we leap to how this element has practical applications for our industry, it is helpful to approach it philosophically. Frijtof Capra is one of America's most innovative thinkers; his work as a philosopher, scientist and author has inspired my vision for the spa journey over many years. Since the Tenth Element interacts with all of the other elements, it is the container that gives structure to the spa experience. Capra's description of a living system directly relates to this concept of time, space and rhythms. A living system, he says, has three characteristics:
Capra goes on to say:
Although this element may seem abstract, the 10th element is woven into almost every aspect of the spa experience. It affects how the client perceives space, how much time the client gives to the experience, and the rhythm and flow of the treatment sequence. This intangible "flow" often affects the client's perceived value of the spa experience. It also is a critical factor in determining the quality of the experience and whether the client will come back.
As with life, the spa experience involves many complex interactions and rhythms. Take scheduling for example. What are the busiest days, hours and high seasons of the spa? What is the ideal treatment time for a massage, signature treatment or spa package? Do you change the treatment menu to adjust to the changes in the season? How much transition time do you need for the spa guest to maximize their experience, and keep them moving to the next treatment to keep your schedule, yet not rush them? Do you have a rest period built into your treatment program to maximize results? What is your turnaround time between treatments to maximize profits, yet keep your technical staff energized and motivated? How long should a shift be for a massage therapist? What about for the other workers? What is the optimal work week for a massage therapist, receptionist, or spa director? I believe this element will come quickly to the forefront as professionals and consumers begin to create language and meaning as to its importance to the healing process.
I would be remiss if I did not mention the importance of dreams to the 10th element. Dr. Elson Hass, author of Staying Healthy with the Seasons, finds that "regular dreaming awareness suggests that you are close to balance between your inner and outer worlds." For example, "busy/type A" personalities are often unable to relax and often do not sleep well or dream. This causes them to get sick and be forced to rest to recharge their batteries-sound familiar? Conversely, the visionary whose primary focus is the immaterial world can also be out of balance with too much dreaming. They may experience greater physical-mental stress, age faster, and appear confused.
I believe this exploration of balance and integration between the inner and outer world, the physical and nonphysical worlds, is fundamental. Practically speaking, that is why the rest period after a spa treatment is so important. This is where true healing occurs; it occurs from within. For example, the most common problem with hydrotherapy treatments is the lack of a rest period after the body's core temperature has been elevated. Even 5-15 minutes can give your client the chance to achieve homeostasis, and solidify an inner intention. I have often reflected on how important the surrender of one's own personal time is to the ritual of the spa experience. Giving control of one's time over to another with the intention of personal healing is about trust. In a time-impoverished culture that is struggling for balance, this first step is analogous to the first step of the spa journey, ousia insight. Only the client as journeyer can begin on his or her own, by opening the doors to trust, or to truth. It is heartening to note that the essence behind the massage industry is creating the space for this deep unspoken interchange.
There is something magical about a great massage or spa treatment. It is not just the touch, the products or the decor. It is the interchange between client and therapist that creates the quality of space. The elusive rhythm of touch, eyes and smiles, time surrendered, time honored -- this is what makes a memorable experience. Time, space and rhythms are the key to transformation, not just for the individual, but for the therapist and society at large. The immortal chant of nature's rhythm is calling us to dance. Let's listen.
Click here for previous articles by Robin Zill, LMT.
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