resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
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.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
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.
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.
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
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.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
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.
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.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
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.
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.
April, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 04
By Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB
Last time, we explored factors that lead to business survival in the practice of massage ("Meaning Business," Feb.2005, www.massagetoday.com/archives/2005/02/07.html). What I emphasized were the skills of attitude, business, presentation, niche identification that provide a focus for work, and a stream of clients to work with. This time, I'm focusing on factors that allow you to physically stay in practice. Some of these are mostly within your control and planning; others - like the direction of the wind - can only be known and contended with.
To survive physically, respect massage as a body-based endeavor. Our bodies have their rules as to training and accommodating to new stresses. One of the cardinal rules of increasing sports training is to increase activities by no more than 10 percent per week.3
Physiologically, the ability to increase use is partly due to the effects of super-compensation on muscle strength and endurance discussed in my article, "Training Effects." (June 2003, www.massagetoday.com/archives/2003/06/08.html).
The structural accommodation of bone and connective tissues to stress, over time, is conceptually captured in Wolf's and Davis's laws, respectively. Increase your use of a given body area too fast and it can't accommodate before it breaks down. Respect your body, and its time for adjusting in your enthusiasm for doing the work.
Apart from controlling the rate of ramping up the total amount of massage you do, it's important to control both how the massage is done and the cumulative after-effects. Less stress is placed on your body when you vary the means of applying pressure, alternating the work you are doing between different body surfaces - fingers, palms, open fists, knuckles and forearms. Just as important, is learning to work equally with both sides of your body rather than always using a dominant side.
As your work becomes deeper, the additional pressure should come more from your weight and stance rather than your hand and arm muscles. Having a table that is about fingertip high is one measure of height I use for sports or deep-tissue massage. Another measure is having a table at a height that allows me to place a flexed knee on its surface with my other foot flat on the flow, while still being able to freely lean forward to apply weight. Using a stance with one foot in front of the other will allow you to push your body forward and back from your legs in a rocking motion, rather than pushing from your shoulders. Movement training from tai ji or qigong can help in getting the feel of moving your body with intent. Squeezing petrissage that intensely uses hand and forearm muscles can be supplemented or replaced with rolling the tissue as you rock forward. Finally, both getting massage for yourself and using body-care techniques, such as those given by Sharon Butler and Lauriann Greene, can increase your professional longevity.4,7
Staying in the massage business goes beyond just doing the work. In the United States, provision of health insurance is largely gained through employer plans (or by marriage to an employed person). Distinctions are made between individual plans, small-business plans covering two to 50 persons, and larger employer plans. Planning for health care can be vital to both your family and business finances. A recent review of 1,771 bankruptcy filings revealed that 52 percent of them resulted from medical costs.9 The study showed that involuntary lapses in health coverage can be financially devastating. Even when people had medical insurance coverage, the co-payments and deductibles for serious health crises coupled with loss of income accumulated overwhelming debt.
While there is little you can do outside of politics to change the structure of health insurance provisions, there are a number of resources you can use to learn about small business health insurance, including coordination with the new, pre-tax, health savings accounts (HSAs).1,2,8,11,12
In looking through the state health insurance guides by Georgetown University8 and the coverage offered by organizations, such as the National Association of Female Executives (NAFE),10 I noticed much of the provision was done through a single Internet broker.5 May the days of your practice be long and fulfilling.
Click here for previous articles by Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB.
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