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TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
Low Back Pain: Posture and Movement Analysis
When performing static and dynamic movement analysis of the lumbopelvic hip area, begin with standing visual posture analysis of the pelvis, and then perform lumbar range of motion and assess what you might see during normal versus abnormal lumbar flexion motion.
Avoid Random Treatment of Trigger Points (Part 2)
We must acknowledge that the fascia, which surrounds literally everything in our bodies, including every muscle fiber, is more than just a covering.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
Interpersonal Skills 101: Enhancing the Value of Our Patient Interactions
Recently, I read an interesting article in our local newspaper titled "The Value of Human Interaction." The article presented comments from a senior editor for Fortune magazine who discussed "Civility in the Business World."
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
Atypical Femoral Fractures and Bisphosphonate Use: What to Watch For
Bisphosphonates (BP) are popular drugs, with more than 8 billion in sales in 2008; however, profits have declined as patents began expiring. Nonetheless, BP remain the most commonly prescribed drugs for patients at risk of osteoporotic fractures, with several million prescriptions written every year.
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
Primary Spine Care: Addressing Concerns & Criticisms
The Dec. 1, 2013 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic included an article describing the implementation of a training program for primary spine practitioners (PSP) within a metropolitan region and supported by a large BC/BS plan.
A Reality Check – and a Chance to Educate
Imagine working in the public relations department of nutrition retailer General Nutrition Corporation (GNC) and reading the The New York Times announce...
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
Help Update the LBP Practice Guideline
The Council on Chiropractic Guidelines and Practice Parameters has announced the release of an updated Clinical Practice Guideline for Chiropractic Management of Low Back Pain for stakeholder review and comment.
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
Impacting Chiropractic's Future With Technology
When it comes to electronic health records (EHR), Robert Moberg and Dr. Steven Kraus are two of the leading industry experts on the topic.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
Expanding Access, Branch by Branch
The big news coming from Capitol Hill isn't merely the recent introduction of a pair of bills designed to expand chiropractic services in the Veterans Affairs and military health care systems; after all, similar legislation has made its way through Congress before, never reaching the Oval Office for presidential signature.
April, 2003, Vol. 03, Issue 04
The Second Season of Spa: Spring
By Robin Zill, LMT
Author's note: This five-part series is designed to explore the language of nature as it relates to the spa experience.
In this spa series, I am using the language of nature as a metaphor for defining and creating the essence (or ousia) of the spa experience.The ousia (oo-SEE-ahh) philosophy explores the search for true essence in the context of something greater than self. This search is based on living seasonal patterns of change, evolution and connection. Integral to this concept is the idea that "spa," like "nature," is a not a thing to measure and dissect, but an energy event waiting to happen; an energy event waiting to dance.
The ousia philosophy combines the four quadrants of the seasons (winter, spring, summer and fall) with the four-step process of the spa experience:
Each of these steps leads to a fifth stage, which is not actually a step, but rather an experience that can only be achieved through integration. It is the individual's unique perspective that unifies all of the stages as one. This is the experience of synethesia, in which your senses blend together to create a transcendant personal experience. This is what the spa experience, and nature, are all about. Personal integration creates a story, an indelible memory that takes the spa journeyer deeper into the process of understanding self.
The spa journeyer is a pioneer on a quest to explore new frontiers in personal wellness. This kind of exploration avails itself through the senses and personal experiences. I am speaking of personal awakening. What we perceive through our senses is what inspires our intellect and spirit to bring forth our unique selves; it is what inspires us to bloom. In the language of nature, spring is the season of new beginnings that enlivens the dormant seed created during the restful, inner season of winter (when vision took root).
From a spa business perspective, the soil has been tilled, and the seeds and seedlings now are being planted. It is time to step out into the world and say, "Here we are." Spring is the season of birthing your spa. You are ordering and receiving the products, equipment, supplies and specialty items you envisioned. Advertising and marketing promotions are in full swing as you finalize employee selection; fine-tune treatment nuances; train staff; and learn new software and specialty equipment. Everything is blooming. Although actualizing your vision may now seem a little like the lone daffodil pushing up through a crack in the sidewalk, there is no turning back.
Have you ever noticed the color of the first spring flower? It almost seems to glow or resonate, so much so that you can almost taste or hear it. The exuberance and energy of finally bringing forth your vision is indescribable. Spring is the time when you are most alive. Just as the color palette of the first flowers of spring change into summer, the greening of the spring world brings monetary and personal success if you have planned wisely. However, it also can be stressful. Spring is the height of the allergy season and unexpected weather changes. Can you have too much blooming at one time? What if there is a late frost? The diversity of challenges you face will be vast, which is why working with experienced consultants and vendors in your weak areas is highly recommended. If you need assistance with plumbing nuances; treatment development; software; specialty services; etc., reach out; a thriving industry is ready to help you.
You are the master landscaper; you know where everything is planted, and why. You know what is expected to bloom next month - and what plant is unexpectedly taking over, killing the opportunity for your precious gladiolas to rise. At this stage of business development, communication is everything. Communication to employees, customers and vendors is of the utmost importance. I suggest you take the time to develop company policies and an employee manual right from the onset. This will give structure and clarity to the staff, and give you a tool to evaluate the success of the business choices you've made thus far. Focus on communication, and pay attention to the nuances of connecting with staff at all levels.
For me, all this makes the difference between a successful business, and one that merely survives or is mediocre. Spa business is not only about profit, but also life fulfillment. Do you love your work? I believe in encouraging you to learn the language of nature as you grow within the industry. Attuning yourself to this perspective is what separates the weeds from the flowers in spa business.
My hope is to encourage you to look differently, because if you are able to see the nuances and details in your work and environment, you will be able to create a spa experience that deepens clients on their journeys to wellness. This season, teach yourself to observe your environment; think of plants and even people as patterns of moving energy. Have you ever noticed how a plant grows over a period of days and weeks; how a flower opens; how a leave unfurls on a vine?
As Michael Schneider, author of A Beginner's Guide to Constructing the Universe: The Mathematical Archetypes of Nature, Art, and Science... A Voyage from One to Ten would say, this is life in action. It is only our slow nervous system that fixes surfaces and takes static snapshot of plants (and people) that are, in reality, in continual change. Although it may be a slow process, it is energy in motion.
Simply put, nature is a living system that embraces the interplay between structure and randomness. This elusive quality of the healing dynamic for the therapist and client is the magic that is often difficult to put into words. Easier said than done, the interplay between a consistent organizational system (business or treatment protocol) and the random environment (economy and consumer choice) it is operating in, is what makes the whole greater than the sum of it's parts.
The spa experience is like nature: It is not a thing to measure and dissect, but an energy event waiting to dance.
And might I add ...
Click here for previous articles by Robin Zill, LMT.
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