resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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."
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.
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.
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
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.
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.
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.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
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.
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.
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?."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
February, 2003, Vol. 03, Issue 02
Movement Awareness: Connecting Client With Self, Part II
By Josef Dellagrotte, PhD, LMHC, CFP, RMT
Editor's note: Part I of this article appeared in the December 2002 issue, available online at www.massagetoday.com/archives/2002/12/04.html.
The Essential Qualities of Human Movement
When the practitioner moves well, it indicates that forces are being transmitted along pathways of contraction and lengthening - an interplay of force vectors matching up with myofascial pathways of lengthening, such that the net effect is both postural uplift and neutralization of torquing stresses.An observer would see smooth motions and a relaxed, satisfied client. Movement is a science, a skill, an art form which, when well executed, affords practitioners a better chance of working without the attrition rate of injuries associated with the profession; a sustained pain-free practice; and more-satisfied, better-managed clients.
The Essential Skill of the Practitioner Is in the Quality of Movement
The real science and art of massage begins with the practitioner's awareness through movement, which has higher-grade value than simply learning several external techniques. Movement is the very condition of life and all life activities.
There is no escape: If the practitioner does not have awareness of movement and how she/he is being affected, it is only a matter of time before the gravitational stresses of life lead to structural and functional disorders in the form of musculoskeletal or myofascial pain. Disorder, the dreaded entropy of the body, sets in. Will power and determination are no match for these forces. The practice life of the bodyworker is cut short; damage and pain becomes recurrent - and all the unnecessary result of poor learning or weakened kinesthesia!
Moshe Feldenkrais, the somatic innovator and pioneer, observed that life without movement is inconceivable. Ida Rolf understood that structure was the key to stability, balance and mobility. Several somatic innovators have developed new learning approaches, so that not only the practitioner, but also the client can experience basically efficient movement, leading to the maintaining of supported upright posture. The field of somatic study has moved outward, from treatment to educative therapy.
Once again, historically speaking, the client has another chance at self-learning and self-maintenance. Once aware that the way we move is a major key to practice, we can look into the detail of primary functional movement actions. What I'm referring to are species-based activities of daily life that have a purpose, satisfy life needs, and even share a species commonality, to some extent. For example, people all over the world must lie down, get up, sit, stand and walk.
What Practitioners Need to Know
To be structurally, functionally and even psychophysically well-integrated, every person needs the essential movement nutrients: resonant movement; lengthening through the spine and along myofascial pathways; stretching of local connective tissue pathways; strengthening of muscle groups in a balanced way; relaxation responses, which are built into every movement activity; feelings of satisfaction and enjoyment from movement activity; and clarity of direction and intention. We may not get the full complement at any one time; as when taking vitamins and minerals into our bodies, it can take place at different times.
The bodyworker needs to be able to access lengthening, which is how energy is being transmitted through the body. Every position we assume when working on clients requires this lengthening. Otherwise, shortening or harmful compressions start to take place by default. When you work, you are either lengthening or shortening; there is no in-between.
Stretching is an essential component, but a highly misunderstood one. Ideally, stretching takes place when we slowly move one local myofascial area. For example, yoga stretches work so well because they take place in slowed down, stillness time, with breathing, relaxation and focus.
Strengthening takes place whenever we move in concentric fashion against gravity. We also can focus on conscious strengthening through particular exercises. Doing massage work can strengthen, but it also can weaken. (I have done therapy with many practitioners who were getting weaker in certain areas of the body, especially the shoulder girdle and upper back.)
Resonance, or smooth movement, is an essential quality that represents everything working together, with forces being distributed without internal turbulence or damage. Resonance derives from physics: the resonant frequency-of-motion principle, represented in pendulums, coils and springs. All living bodies seek and enjoy resonant movement.
Relaxation is an internal physiological experience. The response has been described and documented by many. How does it occur in movement? Whenever movement is resonant, the points at which we move through our own center of gravity (the neutral place), we experience a millisecond of effortlessness, even enjoyment.
Psychophysical (Somatoemotional) Dimension: Empathic Touch
The client who is being moved well unconsciously responds and registers positive somatophysical or psychophysical well-being. This response is enhanced further when the client begins to notice improved sensation when sitting, standing, walking, or performing other activities. Whenever the client notices that, following a session, something has carried over, and that some function has improved, this has significance. Whenever the nervous system has an experience which is not imposed upon it, but is suggested through a empathic touch contact that matches the client's need state, there is likely to be not only healing, but more: improvement of function, and with this a further move in the direction of health and wellness.
Whenever the client notices that something beyond temporary alleviation of discomfort has occurred, he or she is far more likely to return. The massage therapist who follows this path soon has not only a regular clientele, but also a set of learners and movers who are ready to reclaim their bodies and actively take charge of their own wellness.
Josef DellaGrotte is a certified Feldenkrais trainer, registered muscular therapist, integrative somatic practitioner and body-centered psychotherapist. He began training with Ida Rolf, then with Moshe Feldenkrais, who named Josef as a training assistant. His interest and practice is in combining therapy with somatic education, taking the client beyond passive experience and dependency into learning and self-care.
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