resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
What Does Success Mean to You?
Recently, I was asked to speak to young, budding businesswomen about running a successful business — and at first I thought, "Me? You want me to speak to others about success?!"
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.
The Modern Acupuncturist
You studied ancient Chinese medicine, but I'll bet you don't practice it! Contrary to popular belief, our medicine has evolved A LOT over the years. Let's take a brief walk through history and discover the differences between ancient and modern acupuncturists.
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.
Acupuncture and the Pulse
In 1991, I attended a martial arts workshop hosted coincidentally by Sung Baek, a martial artist and the head of his lineage as a Korean trained acupuncturist. I was enamored by the details Sung could attain from the pulse, as told to me by some of his apprentices.
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.
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.
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.
The Source-Luo Point Combination
The luo collaterals are part of the acupuncture channel system presented in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu (The Nei Jing). The function and clinical application of the luo mai are primarily presented in chapter 10 of the Ling Shu, however, they are also found in others chapters in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu.
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 to 4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
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.
Use Technology to Gain New Patients and Improve Efficiency
From the smartphone in your pocket to your microwave oven, advancements in technology have made almost every aspect of our lives easier.
How One Little Symbol (#) Gets You More Patients
Are you struggling to get more fans or followers for your acupuncture practice? Or are looking for ways to simply connect with your patients? Or do you just want to know how to keep them engaged (comments, retweeting, liking and sharing)?
The Nectar of Plants: Essential Oils and Chinese Medicine
Essential oils are a very hot topic these days, especially with the likes of the Ebola virus and the resurgence of measles lurking in our awareness, but when I first became interested in Chinese medicine, essential oils weren't on the radar screen for acupuncturists.
The Year to Make Things Happen
It is hard to believe that the Year of the Ram – 2015 is half over. Time seems to be moving especially fast. This is the year for things to happen for the acupuncture profession.
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 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
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.
TMF 2015 Scholarships
The Trudy McAlister Foundation (TMF), a nonprofit organization established to support students who are on track to make contributions either to clinical practice and/or to the understanding of the role of Traditional Oriental Medicine, has announced the 2015 scholarship recipients.
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.
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.
Calculating Billable Units
I recently learned of an office that was audited based on the number of acupuncture sessions performed in one day. Is there a maximum number of sessions that can be performed in one day?
Acupuncture in the U.K. Today: A Personal View
When asked to write a short piece on the current state of the U.K. acupuncture profession, my first response was to say it has all been relatively quiet.
Breath: The Movement of Oxygen and Energy
I remember with surprising clarity the first time a patient started crying during an acupuncture treatment I was giving. This is now quite a long time ago, back in 1999, when I was a student.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
January, 2006, Vol. 06, Issue 01
It's About Health
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
What a year 2005 has been - and 2006 should be really interesting. There are several themes I hope to discuss as the year unfolds. I hope my columns stimulate you to think and, ultimately, to act, not just react.By shining the spotlight of this column on topics I consider to be important challenges facing our profession and sharing my views on them, I hope to start discussions that bring about positive change. I do not expect everyone to agree with me. Not only would that be boring, but it would not bring about the debates our profession needs to grow and improve. For too long, the open discussion of various viewpoints has been discouraged and stifled by our professional organizations, whose elite carry on their discussions behind closed doors. Massage Today is the only forum in our profession where different ideas can be presented and discussed openly. Hopefully these discussions continue beyond the pages of Massage Today and into your lives, practices and associations maybe even into laws and rules.
This year, I shall discuss licensing, research, the new Federation of State Massage Boards, and of course my favorite topics: education, insurance and medical massage. Along the way, I shall provide you with some therapy tips and general health information, including health freedom issues. Keep an open mind and a sharp memory, and take action on whatever you feel passionate about. Get involved. You will get out of this profession what you put into it.
Sweet Gone Sour
In the interest of promoting health, which I feel should be one of the primary goals of the massage profession, I thought I would share some interesting information that has crossed my path lately. Hopefully, it will help you and might help you help your patients.
For those of you trying to be healthy by going sugar-free, be aware that aspartame has now been found to cause cancer in rats, at levels currently approved for humans. Aspartame is the artificial sweetener used to make diet pop and most commercial sugar-free foods taste sweet. It seems the incidence of malignant tumors, lymphomas and leukemia go up significantly at only 20 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. The United States government says the acceptable rate for humans is 50 mg/kg. Europe only allows 40 mg/kg. You can find the whole story at www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=34040#. The connection seems to be that aspartame turns into formaldehyde, particularly in soda pop, if allowed to get warm. This has been linked to MS-like symptoms in some patients. Now, it appears the cancer connection has been made. So, if you think your government cares about your health and is trying to protect it, think again. The FDA, which I call the "Fools for Drugs Administration," is made up of soon-to-be or former executives of pharmaceutical and agribusiness companies. The only health they are concerned about is the health of the balance sheets of their soon-to-be or former employers. Don't trust them, and don't for one minute think they care a hoot about your health or anyone else's. A former head of the FDA testified before the U.S. Congress that he would not stand by and allow the rapidly growing natural health and supplement movement to negatively impact the sale of pharmaceuticals.
To further demonstrate the lack of care and compassion by your government and mine, I offer the proposed new rules by the EPA which, if enacted, will allow chemical and pesticide testing on children. Yes, that's right, children, but as they point out, testing only will be allowed on certain groups of children. Let's see; those groups are mentally handicapped, orphaned newborns, rejected or abused children, and children not in the United States. See what compassion our bureaucrats have? (For more, see www.organicconsumers.org/epa6.cfm.)
Anyone for Health Freedom?
On a more positive note, there is a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives that needs the support of all who cherish their health freedom. Hopefully you do. It's the "Health Freedom Protection Act" (H.R. 4282), introduced Nov. 9, 2005. The act specifically will: 1. Stop the FDA from censoring truthful claims about dietary supplements; 2. Stop the FDA from prohibiting the distribution of scientific articles and publications regarding the role of nutrients in protecting against disease; and 3. Address the FTC's violations of the First Amendment by preventing the FTC from trying to control what is communicated about nutrient-disease associations. If you believe in this effort, please write your representatives in Washington, D.C., and request that they become a co-sponsor and vote for the bill
What does this have to do with massage? In my opinion, massage is about health. Massage is an alternative to the sickness care system. Part of the massage therapy exchange should include the sharing of information on health. As alternative providers, we should be resources to our patients on alternative health information and practices. Quality food is one of the major components of a healthy lifestyle. You cannot have health for long without quality nutrition. Access to alternative health and nutritional information is essential. Remember, massage is an alternative therapy for many conditions. We, as alternative providers, must support freedom of choice in health care and freedom of access to alternative health information. We must do it now, and constantly, or the pharmaceutical/sickness industry will stomp out the alternative health movement. We already are well on the way to being co-opted and controlled by insurance companies and gatekeeper physicians. (For an enlightening look at where your health insurance dollars go, see www.bolenreport.net/feature_articles/feature_article017.htm.)
A significant segment of the massage/bodywork profession needs to get over the idea that this profession is nothing more than a trade that smears oil over skin, which anyone can do with little or no training. The "come on, it's just a massage" segment of our profession either needs to take some self-esteem pills or be relegated to a bottom tier of a segmented profession that is clearly defined and strictly restrained. We have the opportunity to become the premier, first-door health care providers in the alternative health movement. Do we have that big of a vision, or not? This really is about the health of the planet and all of humanity, not just a massage or the profession itself. If we do not stake our claim to this potential for our profession soon, a huge opportunity will be lost. We can never accomplish it by modeling the current failed power structure of the sickness care industry, or molding into it.
So much to think about, so little space. Hope your New Year is off to a great start. Best wishes to each of you for a successful, happy year. More in March. Bring your kite.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB.
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