resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Connecting the Dots
In 2002, I published a book on patient examination procedures that included information on the procedural coding of the recommended examinations. The book should have been published in 2000, but I had trouble finding a publisher. Why?
News in Brief
An Encouraging Sign at Palmer; NBCE Announces Retirement of Longtime Director of Testing.
Help Your Parents Stay Engaged
As much as parents may wish it were so, children do not come with an instruction manual. There's no "how to" that can be followed and no two children are alike, so what works with one generally won't work with the next.
Old TCM Sayings: Treat the Front to Treat the Back
Chinese medicine college was, and always will be, a memorable time. It was a time of massive personal and professional growth.
The CDC came out with a report in March 2013 that suggests 1 in 50 children will be diagnosed somewhere on the autism spectrum – significantly higher than the 1 in 86 figure that came out in 2007. What does this mean moving forward, particularly for children?
Cell Health (Part 2)
Dr. Barsten, your book is about restoring "cell vitality." Can you briefly define the term? Cell vitality is more than the mere absence of symptoms or pathology, but optimum structural, physiological and energetic health.
Put the Social Back Into Social Media
Social media is more than a passing fad, it is definitely here to stay. Social media apps and channels of distribution may evolve, but the concept of social media is now big business and a part of all our lives.
It's Time to Create a Strong Acupuncture Footprint
Footprints in the sand. Footprints in the snow. Where do these footprints go? Some are big, some are small, but footprints are made by all.
The Top Seven Website Mistakes Clinics Make
The majority of acupuncture clinics finally have a website for their business. Having a website is crucial for being found online through Google, Facebook and review sites like Yelp.
Are You Really a Healthy Eater?
I always giggle a little bit (to myself) when someone comes into my office and informs me that they are a healthy eater. What exactly does that mean? Does that mean they eat sugar in moderation? And what's that, exactly?
Acupuncture and Homeopathy: Bioenergetic Brothers
Acupuncture and homeopathy share an important healing principle: bioenergetics. "Bio" means "life," so bioenergetics is literally "life energy."
Reflections: The Art of Teaching Asian Medicine
Over the past three decades, my global workshops have been translated into German, Swiss German, French, Romansch, Spanish, Lithuanian and Xhosa. Time to offer you new teachers a few tips!
Finding Balance in the Clinic
This past December, I celebrated 11 years in practice. I seriously don't know where the time went. I feel beyond blessed and grateful to be practicing our profound and beautiful medicine and to be helping guide my patients restore a state of optimal health.
Unlevel Pelvis in the High-School Athlete: Exploring Causes and Effects
The unlevel pelvis is all too common in the high-school athlete and if not detected, will likely cause a lifetime of musculoskeletal issues. Any provider who doesn't look for this common finding is missing critical information.
The Conscious Evolution of Healing, Part 2
The idea of transmission is very important in the Chinese medical classics. According to author Claude Larre, the ancient Chinese were highly interested in the connection between things. Nothing was looked at as an isolated entity.
Leaving Footprints on Capitol Hill: Tribute to Dr. Kenneth Luedtke (1930-2014)
It was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Dr. Ken Luedtke.
Case Histories from Bali: Treating Balinese Chidren with TCB and Shonishin
When I moved to the island of Bali in 2005, I offered my services in Bumi Sehat, which means Healthy Mother Earth, a free birthing center for poor and disadvantaged local women located in Ubud.
Mind-Body in Motion
A central goal of low back pain treatment involves the correction of dysfunctional movement patterns believed to be responsible for spinal overload.
It might have been a miserable start to the day in the heart of downtown San Diego. A heavy rain had soaked the large homeless population congregating near the intersection of Third Avenue and Ash Street as they waited for a free breakfast to be served at the First Lutheran Church on the corner.
Neuroscience: Where Western Medicine and Chinese Medicine Can Come Together
The recent advances in neuroscience are truly incredible. With this expansion of scientific knowledge, I would like to see even more research into the neuroscientific basic of acupuncture and Chinese Medicine.
September, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 09
The Wide-Open World of Massage Therapy
By Linda Riach
In this helter-skelter world, stress reigns. With so many tense and jittery folks seeking help, there's never been a better time to be a massage therapist. According to the Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals (ABMP), there now are almost 200,000 massage therapists in the United States, and more than 50,000 people are entering the field each year.Massage is over a $5 billion-a-year industry and has become such an important segment in the complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) arena that massage therapists are its largest professional group, followed by chiropractors.
Much of this growth is attributable to significant changes in consumers' perception of the industry. Through its annual market surveys, the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) discovered that only about 25% of Americans had ever experienced a massage from a massage therapist in 1999. By 2004, that number had almost doubled to 49%, and there is every indication the growth will continue for years to come.
With such explosive growth in the industry, massage therapists have more career choices today than ever. According to the AMTA, while the vast majority (84%) of massage practitioners continue to provide services in an independent setting, such as their offices or on location, considerable growth in massage is taking place in spas, salons, health & athletic clubs, hotels and resorts. And with the rapid emergence of CAM and medical spas, a growing number of massage therapists can be found working alongside medical doctors and other professionals in their offices or in hospitals. With such a plethora of choices available, many wonder what factors they should consider when deciding on a massage therapy career. A good place to start might be to assess why you decided to pursue massage therapy in the first place.
If you view massage therapy as a way to help people relax and reduce stress, you might consider working for a resort, spa or upscale hotel, where guests have massage therapy available as a means of stress-reduction. According to ABMP, massage therapy generates over 60% of such a facility's total revenue; therefore, as more resorts, spas and hotels open, massage therapists will be in greater demand. Visitors to these facilities often seek such techniques as Swedish and Thai massage and shiatsu, thus providing diversification to your practice.
If you identify with the growing acceptance of CAM, you are committed to the notion that massage therapy can help relieve pain and restore function from injuries that may previously have required surgery or other invasive procedures. In the most recent national survey by the AMTA, 91% of respondents agreed that massage is effective in reducing pain. Chiropractors, naturopaths, acupuncturists and other practitioners of alternative medical care often recommend massage therapy treatment for acute or chronic conditions. In-depth knowledge of anatomy, science and pathology will enable you to apply such techniques as myofascial massage, shiatsu, and deep-tissue massage for clients' improved health and healing.
Over the past several years, our society has become increasingly more exercise-conscious, leaving both amateur and professional athletes in pain due to overuse conditions or injury. Passage of the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Title IX has brought an unprecedented number of women to the training room for treatment, thus requiring more trained therapists. According to Myles Brand, president of the NCAA, "In 1972, fewer than 30,000 women were participating in sports. Today, nearly 150,000 women are competing in sports at NCAA member institutions." And with the growth of sports programs in high schools, as well as in colleges and universities, many more massage therapists are being hired to keep their athletes healthy, limber and able to play. So, whether your clients are weekend warriors, scholars or professional athletes, the invaluable services you will provide might include sports massage, deep-tissue massage, myofascial release and/or hydrotherapy.
Thought of as an "enlightened" pursuit for years, massage in the workplace is being offered by more companies today than ever, primarily because an increasing number of them have found on-site massage to be a low-cost benefit with a high payoff. (So says ABMP in a recent survey.) With the growth in corporate massages comes an even greater opportunity for massage therapists. Having a massage therapist visit the workplace has become a real plus for employers wanting to attract new people and retain existing staff. It also has become a terrific source of business for the proactive massage therapist.
The rapidly widening acceptance of massage therapy in almost all corners of our environment means your career choices are limited only by your imagination. I've described a few options you might consider, but I also suggest you keep another thought or two in mind. Many massage therapists do not confine themselves to just one setting. Many therapists who work in resorts, spas and other places with large, established practices, do so part-time while they develop their own independent practices. That's the approach taken by many who are just getting started. Then there are those who look upon massage therapy as a part-time career. They have other jobs, but enjoy providing their healing touch in their spare time. So, there is no "right way" to pursue your career in massage therapy. It totally depends on your other interests and how much of your life you choose to devote to it.
Previous articles, a "Talk Back" forum and a brief biography of Linda Riach are available online at www.massagetoday.com/columnists/riach.
Click here for previous articles by Linda Riach.
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