resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
July, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 07
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.
The moment has arrived.This Friday is opening day for The Spa House, your new day spa. The festivities are set to begin at 5 p.m. with a big grand opening party, and I know you couldn't be more excited. You're rushing around with a thousand concerns on your mind, feeling more like a host than a business owner. But even though your life may feel like it's all about the future, I thought I would take this opportunity to look back at the past and review your progress up to this point.
My intention is to provide you with a reminder of why and how you got to this point of opening your own spa in the first place. I feel there are four reasons why you will be the perfect spa owner: You're a caring, giving, feeling therapist who carries the therapeutic torch, or vision, for your spa; you're willing to learn, grow and change, passing this torch along to others when the time is right; you've got a strong business partner; and you're lucky.
Carry the Therapeutic Torch
In my mind, Lou, first and foremost you've always been and always will be a massage therapist. The core inspiration for you to get into the spa business in the first place was your passion for helping others and interacting with one individual at a time in meaningful, therapeutic encounters. You wanted to take that inspiration and apply it in the spa setting, where more people experience therapeutic massage for the first time than in any other venue.
So you went forth and found work in the spa industry, after applying yourself diligently to become trained as a first-rate bodyworker. A spa without a therapist with a deep commitment to the therapeutic process (like yourself) is like a restaurant without a good chef. Keep this in the forefront of your mind when you're dealing with payroll, scheduling, marketing, bookkeeping and other non-therapeutic necessities of the spa. Always make the therapeutic encounter the spa's main focus. Spend time every week and everyday thinking about it.
When Mel Zuckerman, founder of Canyon Ranch spa, first started his business, he personally signed up for an herbal wrap every day for the first year. That way he kept his therapists busy while sending the message that he focused on the therapeutic process.
Pass the Therapeutic Torch
Paradoxically, even though you're the one with the vision to carry forward, you're also the one who needs to be able to relinquish this vision - to pass the torch along, so to speak. Mel had to do the same thing eventually, as his business grew. Some spa owners/therapists in your position make the mistake of tying the spa's success too tightly to their own therapeutic prowess. They make their touch the showcase of the spa, and somehow they never seem to find other therapists who are quite good enough to attract more clients and expand the business.
This is the paradox: You must hold tenaciously to the vision, but at the same time you've got to be willing to let it go. In other words, your vision must be so strong that other people on your team internalize it and make it their own. This will be your number one mission as your business expands.
Business is Business
There's a saying, "Do what you love and the money will follow." I'm not a firm believer in this bit of wisdom. In fact, I think it is a bunch of baloney. I would rephrase the saying so it reads something more like, "Focus on the money and the money will follow." Too many therapists are unwilling to focus on the money. This is why your partner, Barbara, is such a crucial element to your potential success: She is a businessperson; she will focus on the money.
I'm always telling massage therapists who are would-be spa owners to focus on the business, marketing, promotion, keeping costs down, building clientele, retail, compensation options, and the bottom line. But quite often, these terms are foreign or antithetical to their personalities to really sink in. They resist real-world monetary success. I wouldn't want you to think that I am solely a "numbers" person - you know me better than that. But I do firmly believe that you have to equally combine therapeutic savvy with business savvy in order to be truly successful. So, treat Barbara with kid gloves. Believe me, everything depends on her know-how.
And finally, Lou, there is one other key element to your spa's success - plain, old-fashioned good luck. That's right. Every mega-successful person knows this. And somewhere in your psyche you feel it too. Much of what happens in your life feels preordained to some degree, doesn't it? Many people feel the same way.
I've spoken with "multi-hundred-millionaires" about their successes, and they've told me the single most important factor in their ultimate triumph could be summed up in that one word: luck. They followed their hearts, worked hard, and prepared for those lucky breaks when they finally showed up.
As another saying goes (one I believe) "The harder you work, the luckier you get." So, keep working at it, Lou. Make The Spa House everything it can be. Go for the biggest vision you can conjure up. And good luck!
Until next time,
Steve Capellini, LMT
Click here for previous articles by Steve Capellini, LMT.
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