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The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
April, 2006, Vol. 06, Issue 04
What You Need to Know to Select the Right Spa Products for Your Customers
By Stephanie Beck
In past issues, we've covered the basics, selected and written our vision and our intention for the business. Now, what about products? You must consider all the options: wet room or dry room, ingredients, price, and where to begin.
Remember to keep in focus with your intention and vision of the business.If your intention is to cater to mostly male clientele, then consider those products that support that intention. Use unscented items or lighter scents, because chances are they will not want something that smells "pretty." Let's face it, how many men would get excited about a "Rose Blossom Body Wrap?" I am only speaking in general terms, of course, and in my book, there is nothing wrong with a man wanting a rose blossom body wrap. I am just not sure how many times that service would be requested by men if it appeared on your menu. So yes, consider your intention when selecting the proper products. Not only do you have to match your intention, but also your budget, layout, ingredients, scents, etc.
Wet Room or Dry Room?
I've mentioned this before, and I'll say it again: Thanks to our brilliant manufacturers, you have the capability to offer spa services in dry room facilities, and as the old saying goes, "Everyone is doing it!" Whether you select Lotus Touch, Soothing Touch, Amber, Bon Vital, Biotone, Pharmaskincare, or one of the many others, you have scrubs, muds, paraffin, mud paraffin, and polishes that easily can be removed with warm towels, massaged into the skin or peeled off the body. Spa services done in dry room facilities - you've got to love it.
For centuries, the word "spa" has been synonymous with water or baths, usually with mineral or therapeutic values. If your intention is to maintain this concept, then make sure your products can be used in a Vichy shower or hydrotherapy tub. The beauty of today's muds and scrubs is that they are flexible and can be used in either a wet room or dry room, because flexibility is a good thing!
As some of the products listed above (like paraffin) imply, they cannot be used with water. You will need to purchase smaller pieces of equipment like a paraffin heater and rolling cart to put it on so you can have access as you apply the paraffin with a brush or drape sheet around the body. Also keep in mind that if you don't plan on offering shower facilities or wet rooms, you will need to make sure your spa rep equips you with all the tools you will need to perform the treatments. We will talk more about creating relationships and how important it is to be more than "a number" with your supplier in the future. It never hurts to ask your spa rep what accessories you will need, although your spa rep should recommend what items you need to perform the treatments.
Here are some things to keep in mind when thinking about ingredients. Does this match my client's needs? Does it match my spa theme? What are the contraindications? What are the benefits? The main problem when discussing a particular ingredient is the fact that most of the "talk" hasn't been scientifically studied or proven. Unless the manufacturer has paid for the independent study or conducted countless tests, they can only make general statements regarding the ingredients in their products. For instance, we all know the benefits vitamin E has when taken internally, but how many of us know of a study in which it's applied to the skin? I'm not looking to pick on anyone in particular. Just be aware of the limitations the manufacturers have, and make sure you match up the general ingredients with your vision and intention.
This also leads to our next topic: contraindications. Because so many ingredients have not been clinically tested, again, all manufacturers are left with making general statements. For instance, it's not recommended that you use seaweed-based products on a client who has a thyroid condition. Because we know that seaweed contains certain amounts of iodine and that iodine is controlled by the thyroid, and because we also know a certain amount of product is absorbed into the skin, it doesn't take a genius to figure out why it's important to ask the questions. Other clients have a very adverse reaction to nut oils. Therefore, you would want to make sure your spa products do not contain such ingredients, or at the very least, you'd want to have an alternative product available to meet those clients' needs.
Cost per treatment, hidden costs, and complete lines - these are to be considered when deciding on products. It's important that you understand the value of cost per treatment, because it won't matter if one gallon of salt glow is $10 less than the other brand if you have to use three times as much in each treatment. Also, there are some hidden costs if you have to use more water or three extra towels to remove a particular mud. You may have saved the money on the front end (because it was cheaper by the gallon), but you are paying for it on the back end (because your water or linen bill has just increased). Some people think that paraffin wraps are less expensive than mud wraps, but by the time you've added the accessory items, your expenses are about the same. Stay within your budget, and ask your spa rep what you'll need ahead of time so you can create the proper budget.
Complete lines are very important. By "complete lines," I mean having the proper retail or sell-through items. I will go out on a limb here and talk briefly about a subject that makes most people cringe: "retail sales." Before you start telling yourself, "I am NOT a salesperson," consider this: The average amount of retail sales in the spa industry is about 28 percent, and the spa market is about a $12 billion market. That's a lot of extra money, wouldn't you say? Also, people are going to purchase products following a treatment, whether they purchase from you (the practitioner or day spa owner) or go to their local department store to try and duplicate the same feel of their skin. Why any practitioner would want their hard work to continue to line the pockets of the local department store owner is beyond me! Besides, you chose the professional product for a reason: you believe in it. Otherwise, you would be using the cheap mineral-based products from the department store, too! Some practitioners believe the client can't afford the professional product, even though the client has never said they couldn't or wouldn't afford it. Given the opportunity, the customer will purchase, provided you have selected the proper product that meets their needs. Why do hair salons carry high-end shampoos that aren't sold in retail stores? It's the same concept: you go to a professional who carries higher quality products. Not providing them actually lowers your overall value.
Offering product selection makes customers happier and makes your business increase. This holds true whether you are a day spa owner or an individual therapist. Just be careful not to over invest against your budget. At Scrip, we offer several lines that you can retail in your space without all the heavy minimums, so be sure you know the return policies, guarantees, retail support, price structures, etc. when selecting the brand that fits your needs. Again, your spa rep should be able to guide you to the proper product line that meets your needs, which in turn, should meet the needs of your customers.
I have enjoyed e-mails with several of you over the past two months; it's good to know so many of Massage Today's readers are opening new spas or looking to expand their services and are enjoying my articles. Thank you for all the wonderful feedback! I would encourage everyone to keep me posted on your success. If others have any questions, please feel free to contact me at . Keep striving to make your dreams a reality!
Click here for more information about Stephanie Beck.
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