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The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
January, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 01
By Steve Capellini, LMT
Author's Note: The Spa Letters column features news, personality profiles, trends, and plenty of professional possibilities for LMTs in the spa industry. The style is epistolary, meaning the articles are letters to a fictional massage therapist friend of the author.
So now your rooms are being built out, the paint is being applied, and the spa is taking shape.People you didn't know until last week are bustling around, looking to you for guidance. These are called employees, and they must be treated with care. It feels funny to be on the receiving side of all those questioning glances, doesn't it? There is a lot more to being a boss and owner than you realized.
Now that you have your staff assembled - two massage therapists, two estheticians, a receptionist/sales clerk, and a part-time cleaning person - you're ready to rev them up into a customer-pleasing frenzy, but before you do that you've got to give them the tools they're going to need to succeed. You've got to bring them up to speed on the treatments they're going to be performing - the long list of offerings that will make your spa unique and memorable. That's right: It's time to create your menu of spa services.
The Benefits Paradox
As you move forward in putting together your treatment menu, you're going to run into what I call the "benefits paradox." Simply stated, it is this: typical treatments you find on thousands of menus at spas around the world work well and offer people results, but they're boring, boring, boring! New, avant-garde treatments may be more exciting and enticing to your clients, but they might have questionable therapeutic value. What to do?
When you think of spa menus, you might get the feeling that they're all the same: so much seaweed, so much mud, so many massages, so many scrubs. You definitely don't want a cookie-cutter feeling in your spa, and you don't want to bore people. But neither do you want to offer a bunch of "fluff and buff" and "razzmatazz" that will leave your clients asking, "Where's the beef?" What can you offer that is going to excite your clients, create noticeable benefits for them, and keep them coming back?
My suggestion: select judiciously from classic spa treatments and then add your own flourishes and personalizing touches to them. This will maintain therapeutic value and add a little something extra that will charm customers.
One From Column A, One From Column B
Many Chinese restaurants offer choices of food from multiple columns, allowing patrons to select from basics such as beef, pork, or chicken, and adding in spices, sauces, and vegetables to taste. You can do something similar with your menu.
The main categories of what spa clients have come to expect include massage, of course; body scrubs; body masks of some kind (whether seaweed, mud, clay, etc.); facials; hand and foot services; and wraps (herbal, detoxifying, aromatherapy, etc.). I suggest you create a category for each of these on your menu and then customize the offerings within each category in your own unique way. For example, since your spa is called The Spa House, I would suggest breaking down the treatments into these categories: Spa House Wraps, Spa House Body Scrubs, Spa House Massage Specialties, and so on. You could, for example, offer the Spa House Energy Rebalancing Massage, and use your resident shiatsu expert to apply the treatment.
In the descriptions for each of these services you can explain the benefits and backgrounds of each. The unique title will get your clients' attention while the description will put their minds at ease, letting them know these are time-tested treatments, many of which, like shiatsu, have been used for centuries around the world. In this vein, you could offer the Spa House Relaxation Massage for Swedish, and so on. Cap off your menu with the crowning touch of something truly special, something that will enthrall your clientele-the signature service.
Your Spa's John Hancock
The signature service at any spa is what sets it apart from other spas in the area. It's what gets people talking about your place. It does not need to be something that everyone rushes to sign up for, but it should inspire conversation and generate clients by word of mouth. This is the "quality, not quantity" section of your spa menu, something truly unique that could only be offered by you. When people think of The Spa House, they should think of this treatment, and they should think of you. Because the spa is you now, Lou, in a certain sense - it's who you are. You'll want to invest yourself in this special treatment, like the signature dish of a great chef.
What's the special treatment going to be? That, I'm afraid, is up to you. Here are just a few hints to get your started thinking in the right direction:
Once you've gotten clear on what categories you're going to have available, you then run into the question of what products you're going to use, which supply companies you're going to choose and who you're going to give your business to. Use extreme caution here, for a few reasons:
Next time you write, let me know what you've come up with for your signature treatment and what products you're thinking of using. I'll do my best to help you out with any further suggestions, if I can.
Until then, take care,
Steve Capellini, LMT
Click here for previous articles by Steve Capellini, LMT.
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