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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.).
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
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.
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.
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!
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.
September, 2007, Vol. 07, Issue 09
Newton’s Second Law: F = M x A
By David Kent, LMT, NCTMB
In previous articles, I have used Newton's Laws of Motion, specifically the first and third laws, as metaphors for how we can create positive change in our personal lives, our respective practices and the massage industry as a whole.During this year's Florida State Massage Therapy Association convention, people asked me when I was going to talk about Newton's second law. Well, as it happens, the timing couldn't be better, because we need to create ripples in our profession and that's what Newton's second law is all about.
To review, the first law states, "Every object [mass] in a state of uniform motion tends to remain in that state of motion unless an external force is applied to it."1 An example I used in a previous article, "The Power of a Minute," states that if there is an area of your life or practice that is like a still pond, then you need to stir it up and create some ripples by throwing some stones in the water. You wish to change and an internal "force" must motivate you to action. Newton's third law of motion states, "For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction."2 This concept I relate to cause and effect with the stones being the cause and the ripples being the effect.
Newton's second law relates to the behavior of an object when existing forces are unbalanced; it states that the acceleration or movement of an object is dependent upon two variables: the mass of the object and the net force acting upon the object.3 Essentially, F = Force; M = Mass; and A = Acceleration, which means F = M x A. Once again, this concept offers a perfect analogy for the massage industry, as it relates to one very important concept: research.
M = Mass
In the massage profession, mass stands for us, the massage therapists, the mass of the profession. And as a profession, our numbers (mass) are large. Just as we comprise a mass, there is an even larger mass of people desperate to learn more about the benefits of massage through research. Preliminary studies indicate that masses of people would benefit from receiving regular massage therapy. In fact, there are plenty of people out there getting massage and not disclosing it to their medical providers because the medical profession still has not fully embraced massage as an adjunct to health care; this is, in part, because research remains in short supply.
We see daily the life-changing results massage has on our patients. But we need more industry research to validate our knowledge and draw even more of the masses to massage. While we're certainly making progress in the field of massage research, we would definitely benefit from additional research. There are many other professions with far fewer people, yet whose research base is more widely encompassing than that of the massage industry. If industries with a smaller number of professionals can produce a steady flow of research, then we in the massage industry - a profession large in number - also should be able to produce a more influential research base.
A = Acceleration
Acceleration equals movement, or action. In this case, we need to accelerate our efforts in the area of research. But acceleration only occurs when we take action. So how can we as therapists help accelerate massage research efforts? To begin, the acceleration of research is funded by the burning of fuel, which we call money. Research requires money - and lots of it. This is where our actions come into play.
Philanthropy - According to the Encarta World English Dictionary, the word philanthropic is defined as: 1) Showing kindness, charitable concern and generosity toward other people; 2) Devoted to helping other people, especially through giving charitable aid.4
You don't have to be a Rockefeller to be a philanthropist. In fact, it doesn't take much more than a creative mind and some ingenuity. Here are some ideas.
At the upcoming American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) national convention in Cincinnati, I will be encouraging conference attendees and exhibitors to stop by the "Sanctuary," where attendees can pay to receive an energizing massage with the proceeds donated to the Massage Therapy Foundation to promote massage research.
Encourage your patients to purchase a "gift certificate" for research. You will then mail the money to the foundation or any other institution that supports massage research.
Host a massage benefit at your clinic or spa, with proceeds going to support massage research.
Recruit participants through your local massage association chapter or partner with others in the community such as hospitals or community service centers.
Donate personal time and/or resources for the benefit of research. At the upcoming AMTA convention, I will be partnering with Hygenic/ Performance Health and Massage Warehouse, a Scrip company. Together, we are offering 50 packages called "Massage Therapy Research Special." This includes one of my home study programs with a photo manual, a Biofreeze masters package and all proceeds will be donated to the Massage Therapy Foundation. Only 50 packages are available so stop by the Massage Warehouse booth to pick up your package.
Playing on a phrase from President John F. Kennedy, "Ask not what your Massage Therapy Profession can do for you ... Ask what you can do for your Massage Therapy Profession." The more money we raise as philanthropists, the more fuel we have and the more action we take. These efforts produce a greater force for massage industry research so the benefits of massage are understood and delivered to those in need.
F = Force
The action of raising money produces the acceleration of massage research and that is dependent upon our mass as an industry and the amount of force we use to create movement. We need our mass to bring about acceleration - to take action. Massage certainly is a force to be reckoned with because it has the ability to increase one's health and quality of life; it also has the ability to decrease one's dependence on pain killers and prescription drugs, as well as traditional health care in general.
One such force in the industry is Dr. Tiffany Field with the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami, School of Medicine. Dr. Field has dedicated her career to studying the effects of touch therapy and has subsequently accelerated research in the industry with powerful results. Over the years, Dr. Field's research has discovered that massage "facilitates weight gain in preterm infants, enhances attentiveness, alleviates depressive symptoms, reduces pain, reduces stress hormones and improves immune function."5
But we need even more research and we aren't fueling it with money fast enough; therefore, we need to create a bigger force that influences greater change. Remember, an object in motion can either bounce off of or penetrate another object depending on the forces placed upon it. As a profession, we need to penetrate the greater world of health care through more forceful massage research.
A Little Bit More About Force: The Butterfly Effect
The so-called Butterfly Effect "is the propensity of a system to be sensitive to initial conditions...this idea gave rise to the notion of a butterfly flapping its wings in one area of the world, causing a tornado or some such weather event to occur in another remote area of the world."6 It doesn't take much for a mass to create a force that causes acceleration. Imagine the possibilities of what could happen if every one of us in the profession flapped our wings in an organized fashion with our time, money and resources. We would have a profound effect on generating additional massage therapy research, as well as educating the world-at-large about the wide-reaching benefits of massage.
It's time for us to apply Newton's second law and become a stronger force in health care. The massage industry must Accelerate the funding to create a Mass of research that will validate and generate the powerful Force we already know massage therapy possesses. Then health care will understand, support and encourage the use of massage therapy.
I'd love to hear your ideas for taking action to bring about positive change. Drop me a line at or visit www.kenthealth.com for more ideas.
Click here for more information about David Kent, LMT, NCTMB.
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