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Building From the Bottom Up
I caught up with my dear friend Honora Wolfe, in her Colorado painting studio where, if she is not praying in Bhutan or doing charitable work in a Nepali free clinic, she spends most of her time now.
Coding for the Subluxation: ICD-9 vs. ICD-10
When I attended chiropractic school, I was taught that chiropractors approach health care differently than the traditional medical establishment.
Physical Exam 101: The Hands
I am sure you are familiar with the old adage: "When the only tool in your toolbox is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail."
Immunizations by Colorado DCs: Really?
You probably didn't hear about it, but back on Nov. 21, 2013, the Board of Directors of the Colorado Chiropractic Association (CCA) adopted "immunization authority" for Colorado DCs as its No. 2 legislative goal.
Knee Pain From the Kinetic Chain
As practitioners of manual medicine, chiropractors often treat patients suffering from knee pain.
The Science of Stretching
In 1986, Rob DeCastella set a course record by running the Boston Marathon in 2:07:51, just 39 seconds off the world record.
By the Numbers: 3 Common Financial Mistakes With Major Consequences
Warren Buffett is on record for sharing the hidden art of becoming wealthy and making it simple enough for anyone to grasp.
A Chinese Medicine Story: An Interview with Mazin Al-Khafaji
Mazin Al-Khafaji's work has interested me for years. In February 2014, we invited him for the second time to speak at the Southwest Symposium in Austin, Texas.
Remembering Clarence Gonstead and 50 Years of the Gonstead Clinic
Dr. Clarence Selmer Gonstead (1898-1978) took chiropractic practice from back-alley bone setting to an understandable biomechanical science. His life was dedicated to clinical competency.
A History Worth Telling
The popularity and the use of acupuncture for the treatment of animals in the United States is at its peak.
Finders Keepers: The Secret to Relationship-Based Marketing
Becoming a successful practitioner has less to do with what you learned in school, and more to do with your ability to find new patients and keep them!
Fibromyalgia: Put the Pain in Its Place
While some fibromyalgia patients respond favorably to regular chiropractic care, others experience minimal relief. Unfortunately, many of these patients must rely on pharmacological management to relieve their constant pain.
New Medical Technologies You Need to Know
We're all familiar with how fast computers become obsolete, as well as the rapid pace of development in the field of cell phone technology. The latest smart phones are far more powerful than desktop computers were only a few years ago.
A Guide for Talking to Doctors about Acupuncture and Brain Chemistry
Before I begin any discussion of how to talk about the effects of acupuncture on brain chemistry, nervous and endocrine function, it is essential to understand just what physicians most need help with.
Why You Should Include the Single-Leg Stance Test in Every Patient Assessment
The single-leg stance (SLS) test, also known as the single-limb stance test, unipedal stance test or one-legged stance / balance test, is often used in the geriatric population to assess static postural and balance control.
Curbing Label Overwhelm
For the average consumer, reading a food package can be overwhelming: natural, organic, non-GMO, gluten free, free range ... you get the picture.
Are You a Bad Chiropractic Patient?
My father was a great DC. In fact, as you might expect, he was the doctor of chiropractic I measured all other doctors against. Sadly, he died at age 61 when I was in my early 30s.
Peer Points: Always Seeking To Grow
Ellen "Kiki" Geary has spent the last decade honing her craft. As a specialist in integrative holistic care, she went straight from completing her master's degree in acupuncture and chinese herbal medicine from Bastyr University to building a successful and thriving practice in the small community of Anacortes, Washington.
Medical Qigong for the Heart: Part III
Part 1 and Part II of this series focused on the physical aspect of the Heart and mental emotional aspects of the Heart respectively. Now, I would like to focus on the spiritual aspect of the Heart.
May, 2006, Vol. 06, Issue 05
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
I constantly am amazed at the variety of topics massage therapists discuss with me. This past month has been quite interesting, and I'm going to share some of the issues brought to my attention.I must stress, however, that I am not a definitive source of information on any of these issues. I have only opinions, not answers. If you want answers, you need to be contacting our "Dear Lynda" columnist, not the editor!
One prospective massage therapist from New York started his e-mail to me with, "This might be a dumb question but" I used to think there were no dumb questions, but I guess I might have judged too quickly, as the writer went on to ask my thoughts about breaking the law and working unlicensed. Apparently, "There isn't much opportunity for massage therapists that much anymore." Overlooking the fact, for a moment, that there has never been a better time to work as a massage therapist in the history of the whole wide world, does this writer think the editor of the largest touch therapy trade publication on the planet would advise that there are loopholes in the law that can be exploited so one can bilk the public by impersonating a massage therapist? My answers to this person would be to follow the laws in your jurisdiction, go to school, start your business and work hard to grow it, the same as you would if you were a carpenter, a Quiznos sub franchisee, a hot dog street vendor or a barber. The writer asked, "Could I maybe give massages (which I think in general I am good at) and accept only tips, plus have everyone sign a medical type release form in case someone tries to claim that I caused them harm or something like that?" No, you can't!
Another reader from California wrote, "I am contacting you to inquire into any new laws around licensing. I heard in November of 2005 that a new law was being implemented in January 2006. In this new law, statewide licensing would be made null and void by national licensing. Furthermore, well-seasoned MTs would be 'grandfathered in' by this law." She continued with, "I need to know EXACTLY what the truth is and any surrounding information to support me and my staff." I'm not sure where this information came from in November of 2005, but whoever was doing the talking was either uninformed or misunderstood. There are almost no national employment credentials, at least that I am aware of. Physicians, attorneys, bus drivers and licensed investigators are all credentialed by the state. As far as I know, only James Bond as 007 was licensed by a national entity. We at Massage Today try to diligently cover any and all state licensing news. Be sure to use the "search" function on www.massagetoday.com to see what has already been written on this topic.
Perhaps the most engaging communication I had this past month was from a New Hampshire massage therapist who wanted to recertify with the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. She told me that after completing the recertification application, she called the NCBTMB to verify certain information so that she wouldn't have to resend the application. After several such attempts without getting a return call, she finally sent the completed application to the assigned NCBTMB lockbox. When she didn't hear anything in what she felt was a reasonable amount of time, she called again, and again, and again. She kept getting told her application had not been received and that she needed to speak with a particular individual to resolve the issue. That individual was never in the office and never returned her calls.
This massage therapist was on the verge of tears as she relayed to me her at tempts to recertify. The only advice I was able to suggest was to put her situation in writing and send it directly to John Page, NCBTMB's executive director. She had already gone through more effort to recertify than I would ever have done myself. As a former chair of NCBTMB, it pains me to admit that, but it's very true. I happened to be in the company of another former NCBTMB chair when this story was unfolding, and when I asked him his thoughts on it, he relayed to me that NCBTMB had never even sent him recertifying applications and that his certification had lapsed before he was even aware of it. If a private organization designed to serve the public and the profession cannot efficiently recertify those who support it, the decay has reached overwhelming proportion.
Another reader chose to remain anonymous, so I have no clue where she is from. Normally, I just delete communications that aren't signed, but I read this one and had a chuckle or two at the well-meaning, albeit opinionated writer. (Opinions are my job, after all!) She wrote, "I have a question. I am strongly aware of a massage therapist who is operating a disreputable practice. To my surprise, I am shocked at how many people are okay with it. They think it is funny, especially guys. Or they think it is just rumors. I know they are not rumors. I know for sure. I know facts but I cannot prove them to anyone. This leaves people to check it out for themselves. Who do I tell? This is what I know. She has told me things herself."
She went on to itemize a laundry list of alleged violations and her reasons for why she thought them an affront to her and her business. They were all important to her, but I shall not repeat them here, as it serves no purpose. She continued, "See, I find this all completely unethical and so wrong. No one seems to care or listen or want to get involved. How does such a situation get fixed when people seem to not want to get involved? If I talk to men, they kind of laugh and make comments about happy endings, etc. I personally don't want my name mentioned to her if she gets reported, either, so I understand why others don't want to get involved; I don't want to either. But this has to stop."
My response to this person is that the only place to send complaint information is to your state licensing board. It is the only entity that can send a cease and desist letter and actually stop unethical practice. If you are unfortunate enough to be practicing in an unregulated state, your only recourse is with the local police department if there are local laws being broken. Do not try to send a complaint without identifying yourself, though. If you aren't signing the complaint, it isn't really a complaint; it's gossip.
So, how would you have responded to these questions?
Thanks for listening.
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters related to the publication's content. Letters may be published in a future issue or online. Please send all correspondence by e-mail to , or by regular mail to:
Former editor of Massage Today, Cliff is owner of Windham Health Center Neuromuscular Therapy LLC. He is nationally certified in therapeutic massage & bodywork and is licensed as a massage therapist by the states of New Hampshire and Florida. Cliff is a member of the International Association of Healthcare Practitioners; a professional member and past president of the New Hampshire chapter of the American Massage Therapy Association; a certified member of the Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals, Inc.; and a past chairman of the board of directors of the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.
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