resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Chronic Pain: Become Part of the Solution
I have lectured to more than 7,000 chiropractic physicians over the past five years regarding the chronic pain and opioid epidemic in this country.
Tai Chi Documentary Premier
First Run Features recently announced the world theatrical premiere of Barry Strugatz's documentary The Professor: Tai Chi's Journey West, which premiered last month at the Laemmle Music Hall in Los Angeles.
What You Say Isn't Always What Patients Hear
A few years ago, my aunt Edna (name changed for the purpose of this story) suffered a stroke. After a short hospital stay, she was transferred to a nursing home for rehabilitation. When she arrived at the nursing home, Edna requested a private room.
An MD Who Understands the Opioid Epidemic
Doctors of chiropractic have an important role to play in ending the opioid epidemic and dealing with chronic pain by conservative means (see our top story in this issue) – but who's to blame for opioid dependence and abuse in the first place?
Acupuncture's Impact on the World
For several years, I have been hearing about the town of Rothenburg, Germany. It seemed just a dot on a map until I arrived. It is the home of the TCM Kongress which began in 1968. It has been held annually for 47 years and it has only missed one year.
AOM Hospital-Based Practice: A Future Reality?
The natural evolution of health care on the planet is integrative health. We may have some challenges ahead, but based on my research, all indicators are pointing in a positive direction. There seems to be an evolving consciousness among our patient population that is "getting it."
Kansas Achieves Licensing Law
Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed House Bill 2615 into law on Friday, May 13, 2016. HB2615 includes provisions for the licensure of acupuncturists in the state of Kansas.
Treating Hip & Groin Pain With Abdominal Release of Upper Lumbar Nerve Impingements
Have you encountered patients with groin and hip pain you can't seem to solve? You know it's not a worn-out hip; you suspect the pain is somehow connected to the spine. But somehow, you just can't help them break through.
An Emerging Partnership Model
Maryland University of Integrative Health (MUIH) has educated integrative health and wellness practitioners for the last 40 years, originally as an acupuncture clinic and school. The institution's transformative, relationship-centered programs integrate traditional wisdom with contemporary science
The Pertinent Negative
We all have to perform evaluations on patients. Most of us don't like doing it – exams take time, and worse it takes even more time after the evaluation to put together a narrative summary of the findings. Sometimes, this process becomes downright tedious.
What's New in Phytonutrition: Mangifera Indica, "The King of Fruits"
One hundred percent pure Indian green mango fruit (mangifera indica), harvested at a special degree of ripeness for efficacy and taste, can now be concentrated as a phytonutrient nutraceutical powder.
Insuring Quality Control in Herb Importation: An Interview with Wilson Lau
Wilson Lau is the vice president of Nuherbs, a Chinese herb importation company based in San Leandro, California. Before joining Nuherbs, he trained as a lawyer specializing in FDA law.
How to Stay Sane During the Elections: Understanding Through the Lens of Chinese Medicine
In Chinese Medicine philosophy, everything consists of Yin and Yang. The law of polar opposites – one cannot exist without its opposite.
Three Tips to Help You Analyze the Acupuncture Case Studies of the NCCAOM Exam
Confirm the answer quickly by the elimination method. Case study:
After two treatments for back pain, a patient presents for a third
session complaining of rapid breathing and wheezing that is made worse
during cold weather.
Believe it or not, an estimated one-third of your patients have eaten some form of fast food within 24 hours of their appointment with you.
Increasing the Value of Spine Care: CMS Approves New Low Back Pain Registry
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has approved the Spine IQ Low Back Pain Registry as a qualified clinical data registry for the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) in 2016.
Sit or Stand? Analyzing a Mixed Message
I'm more than a bit confused. At my age, that seems to be a rather common occurrence. However, today more than ever, I'm getting a mixed message.
A Long-Overdue Win for Oregon Medicaid Patients - and the Implications for Other States
Beginning July 1, 2016, Oregon Medicaid patients with spinal pain (cervical, thoracic, lumbar, pelvic) who are determined to be low risk based on a biopsychosocial assessment tool (STarT Back – Keele University) can receive four chiropractic visits per episode.
Beating the Odds: Interview With Para-Powerlifter Adeline Dumapong-Ancheta
Since October 2015, the FICS Foundation, the charitable organization affiliated with the International Federation of Sports Chiropractic (FICS), has been supporting disabled athletes internationally.
Multivitamin Supplement May Reduce Breast Cancer Recurrence
There is a great deal of controversy regarding the value of multiple vitamin supplements in cancer prevention.
Adventures with the San Jiao
Those of us who have been in practice for several decades relish the way meridians and points reveal new diagnostic clues and new insights. I love to encourage my students to see this as an adventure that goes way beyond the textbooks.
Acupuncture Muscle Trigger Point and Oriental Medicine Sports Therapy
It is difficult to ascertain the internal condition of professional basketball player Lebron James during game one of the 2014 NBA finals, in which he developed debilitating muscle cramps that led to his premature removal from the game.
July, 2007, Vol. 07, Issue 07
Healing Hands, Inquiring Mouth
By Cary Bayer
Last summer, I was at the U.S. Open tournament in New York as Andre Agassi, who had announced his retirement from tennis at the event's conclusion, played fourth-seeded Marcos Baghdatis.Since the tournament is single elimination, this match could have been the American legend's last. The stadium rocked with excitement. As the match proceeded, it didn't seem the old warrior could beat this young stud.
But then, suddenly - perhaps due to pressure - Baghdatis began cramping. He called for the 10-minute injury timeout players are allowed and the trainer massaged his thigh. The treatment helped but it cramped again later in the match. Since the rules prevent players from getting additional massage on the same injury, this otherwise fast athlete hobbled around on the court in tremendous pain.
He eventually would lose to Agassi, largely because of an injury that was in desperate need of massage. Seeing this warrior giving everything he had while his body was unable to cooperate was painful to watch. All he needed was some continuous massage.
Baghdatis' pain was a perfect metaphor; it reminded me of all the tens of millions of people who walk around every day in pain and in desperate need of massage. Many are too proud to ask for support; some too macho to surrender themselves to the healing touch of your hands.
That's where your mouth comes into play. Mouths usually play little role - if any - in a massage. However, once you discover verbally what your client needs for that particular treatment, the session gets underway. But sometimes your future client needs the help of your mouth before they can get the help of your hands. Be proactive and ask if they would like a massage. It's a perfectly innocent thing to do. You might help prevent someone from "hobbling" around with pain and stress buried deep within the tissues and muscles of their aching body.
Most massage therapists, understandably, focus their time and money in developing their talent for use once they get a client onto their table. But succeeding as a massage therapist also requires getting them to your table. Allow me to tell you about a television commercial that's probably more than 40 years old but sheds a great deal of light on this matter.
I discovered this ancient TV spot when I worked in a previous lifetime at the great New York advertising agency Doyle Dane Bernbach. The commercial opens on a heavy virgin snow. It's about 5 a.m., and all is silent. The only sound you hear is a voiceover asking, "Did you ever wonder how the driver of the snowplow gets to the snowplow?" Then you see a man leave his home, start up his Volkswagen Beetle, navigate through the heavy accumulation and get out of the VW into a parked snowplow. Enough said. That commercial ran with little media backing so it's doubtful you ever saw it unless you watched a TV special about legendary commercials. I've found many people who've seen it just once, yet still remember it. That's because of the power of the provocative question it asks.
If we apply that insight to the marketing of a massage therapist, a paraphrasing voiceover might ask, "Did you ever wonder how the master of the massage table gets their clients to the massage table?"
Word-of-Mouth and Words From Mouth
Motion picture studios spend tens of millions of dollars producing a film, then sometimes nearly as much just to market it. It costs a lot to produce great theatrical previews, television commercials, print ads and so forth. And publicity to get the stars on The Today Show, The Tonight Show and everywhere else they can is expensive, too. While all of this is, no doubt, hugely important, nothing - not even outstanding reviews from the critics - affects a film's success as much as word-of-mouth from those who have seen it talking about it to those who have not.
As massage therapists, you're often encouraged by some consultants to spend time and money developing Web sites and ads (though not by me), write columns (only sometimes by me) and create newsletters (this one I agree with). But none of these are ever as important as the recommendations that come out of the mouths of your clients.
Let me say a little about the words that could come out of your mouth as well. The most effective ones are a simple question like, "Would you like to schedule a (fill in your favorite adjective here) massage?" Each therapist's adjective may vary; some opt for healing or relaxing, others for therapeutic, rejuvenating and so forth. Find the one that best describes your work and get used to speaking it.
Therapists who shy away from asking this simple question when they're in conversation about their work usually do so for two basic reasons: 1) they fear the person will say no, or 2) they fear they will be rejected. While it's true that a possible client might say "no," it's better to hear a bunch of "no's" than never ask the question at all. Why? If you hear a lot of "no's," you've been asking a lot more people than you usually do. That means you'll also hear a lot more "yes" responses. And that means you're getting a whole bunch of new clients. Disregard the negative and focus on the positive. And remember the famous Japanese proverb: "Fall down seven times, get up eight."
I'd like to offer a few words of clarification concerning the fear of being personally rejected. Nobody who rejects your offer for a massage is rejecting you; they're rejecting a massage - at least for now. When you take yourself out of the equation, your emotions don't have to be hurt and that's incredibly freeing. It's just a matter of changing the context in which you hold the asking of this question. If the context is that you're rejected each time you ask if someone wants a massage, then each time your adrenaline will flow and your self worth will be at risk. But once you keep your emotions out of it, there's simply a question - does this person want to get massaged? You have nothing to do with it. It's their choice - and often, what they wants is a massage from you.
Click here for more information about Cary Bayer.
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