resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
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.
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.
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.
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."
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.
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.
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?."
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.
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.
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.
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."
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.
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.
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.
Transparency and Accountability: Q&A With the CCE
Every profession needs an organization dedicated to upholding the quality and integrity of its degree programs and educational institutions.
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.
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.
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.
September, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 09
Safety While Working Alone
By Colleen (Steigerwald) Holloway, LMT
During massage school, never once did it occur to me that I was preparing for a career that would leave me isolated for the majority of my workday. After all, my technique classes were full of other students chatting and learning.Even the student clinic was brightly lit and somewhat noisy.
It wasn't until about a month into my career, when I was waiting for an unknown male client to arrive for a six o'clock appointment, that it dawned on me that I was going to be alone in the office - and in a room for an hour - with someone I did not know. Not only was this client a stranger, he was a stranger who was about to be completely "in the buff," covered only with a sheet. "If I'm going to be vulnerable, I should at least have a plan for my safety," I thought, while awaiting his arrival.
We've all been in this situation. Even male therapists experience the occasional female client who makes a suggestive or inappropriate comment that leaves the therapist wondering what kind of services the client is seeking in addition to professional massage. As massage therapists, it is essential to create a safe environment and plan your exit in advance so you will know what to do if your safety is ever at risk.
Screening Clients on the Telephone. Safety begins when the client calls for an appointment. A caller should not hesitate to give you a last name and telephone number. If the caller refuses, I would question the reason why and, in turn, refuse to grant the caller an appointment. Likewise, if a client refuses this information on the health intake form, I would refuse the appointment.
If the caller asks if you accept "tips," nine times out of 10, you are being asked if you will include sex in your treatment for extra money. My response would be, "Gratuities are accepted for exceptional professional services; however, sex is never a part of our service."
When the Client Arrives. Just prior to the arrival of your client, close any doors to other rooms so the client will not know if other people are present in your office or home. Keep several lights on outside the treatment room, as well.
During the Appointment. Make sure someone knows where you are, with whom, and when your appointment will be finished. If you have a cell phone, bring it into the treatment room with you and keep it within reach, or place it in your pocket. Of course, you will turn the ringer off, but keep the telephone turned on. If the client makes an inappropriate comment or gesture during the appointment, it is best to end the appointment and leave the room.
Whether you collect the fees for the appointment is not important; what is more important is your safety. I have known many therapists who tolerated an inappropriate client because they needed the money. It is never worth the money to risk your safety. If you let a client act inappropriately, the client will think the behavior is acceptable and continue.
On-Site Appointments. Your safety is most at risk if you are going to a client's home or hotel room because you will be unfamiliar with the location. Make it a point to survey the location inside and out, taking note of all exits when you arrive. This will prepare you for a quick exit should it become necessary.
After you arrive and greet the client, use your cell phone to call someone (or your answering machine) while in the client's presence. State where you are, including the address and/or room number, who you are with, and that you will call back when the appointment is finished. This will deter anyone with preconceived ideas from taking action. Keep your cell phone in your pocket or apron as a backup.
In my career of 10 years, I am thankful to say I have had only two mishaps with clients who acted inappropriately, although I've warded off many potential problem clients on the telephone. The first client was a nudist and thought I should adhere to his belief system. The second squirmed for 10 minutes on the table before flipping over without my prompting. Instead of accusing the clients of acting inappropriately, I simply told them that I was uncomfortable and left the room.
If you have a safety plan in place, you will be less vulnerable. Unfortunately, sometimes we come across those in our profession that abuse or misunderstand what massage is all about. Plan for your safety and enjoy your career.
Click here for previous articles by Colleen (Steigerwald) Holloway, LMT.
Join the conversation
Comments are encouraged, but you must follow our User Agreementcomments powered by Disqus
Keep it civil and stay on topic. No profanity, vulgar, racist or hateful comments or personal attacks. Anyone who chooses to exercise poor judgement will be blocked. By posting your comment, you agree to allow MPA Media the right to republish your name and comment in additional MPA Media publications without any notification or payment.