resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
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.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
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.
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.
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.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
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 Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
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.
November, 2007, Vol. 07, Issue 11
Why Not Health and Wellness
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
I have always viewed massage as a profession; a health care profession that has the potential to be the premier wellness modality of an alternative, wellness-based health care system. The paradigm to which I subscribe is one of establishing and maintaining wellness through education, natural therapies and lifestyle.Health of the people requires health of the planet and our life-support systems it provides, such as water, soil, food, air, etc. (the environment). This requires sustainable agriculture (organic) and good stewardship of the earth.
I believe in freedom, knowledge and individual empowerment, allowing each person to achieve their ultimate state of wellness and their goals in life. This requires a wellness-based health care system. That, to me, is the big picture for massage therapy. Massage needs to develop and expand its role as first-door providers and wellness practitioners. Other than emergencies and accidents, we, along with the other alternative providers, should be the gatekeepers to the allopaths, instead of them being gatekeepers to us. It means working with other natural therapy providers (chiropractors, acupuncturists, herbalists, homeopaths, etc.) to provide true health care - a system that would be sustainable and cost-effective.
Our current health care system has nothing to do with health and everything to do with sickness. It's a sickness-care system that is dependent on sickness to survive. Therefore, it must insure that there is plenty of sickness to keep it busy. The allopaths have not reduced disease - engineers and plumbers have. The sickness-based system does not use education, it uses fear. They control us by instilling fear of the flu, cancer, heart attacks and financial ruin if we don't pay extortion to their insurance companies. It is a system of dependence, sickness, and irresponsibility for one's own well being.
Sadly, it's a self-fulfilling prophecy, since you create what you focus your mind on. By getting you (the public) to focus on what you don't want, you create the conditions you fear and the allopathic system profits from your suffering. Fear and worry are negative visualizations. You get what you focus your mind on. This is true for the individual, and it's also true for the collective consciousness of a country and of humanity. Of course, the system helps this process along with mercury-laced vaccinations and damaging, mostly toxic medications (some of which are appropriately necessary some times). This is commerce, not health care. Our health care system is by far the biggest killer of Americans, yet where is the outrage? Sadly, we have been trained to view subservience and obedience as virtues.
While this is seldom true of the individual practitioner (your MD), it's the case of the overall system that regulates what an individual practitioner can know and can do. We only know what we are allowed to know in any profession. Only a few step outside the box. Unless one of these rebels makes celebrity status quickly, they will be ridiculed, persecuted, prosecuted and otherwise marginalized so as to not disrupt the cash flow and integrity of the system. This system uses fear to keep its subjects under its iron grip - both patients and practitioners.
The massage profession is missing most of the potential in its calling. Instead of expanding our education and scope of practice as alternative practitioners, we are allowing ourselves to be co-opted by the same greed that drives the allopathic cartel. We lust for third-party payment. The majority of our schools resist expanding massage- training programs to turn out more well-rounded alternative providers, instead opting to turn out therapists who only can do a full-body, relaxation massage. The more who fail as therapists, the better for the schools because it keeps the demand for new therapists high. We are moving ever closer to gatekeeper control over our services as we seek recognition and validation from the allopaths, who deliberately eliminated "manual medicine" (massage) from their system long ago because it didn't generate enough profit or garner enough side effects.
If we lose this opportunity to establish an alternative system to the allopathic cartel, health care will fall into a very dark age. It might well take several generations for such a chance to arise again.
Without health, little else can be accomplished. Health is not a right - it is a responsibility. A sickness-based system does not provide or promote health, but it slowly destroys it. (U.N. statistics show the health of America has steadily declined since WWII.) As a profession, do we want to join with the allopaths and be controlled by them? Do we want to limit ourselves to just treating symptoms, be they general (relaxation) or specific, or do we want to become the premier wellness modality of an alternative to the failed sickness-based system we have now? A greater awareness must be created that recognizes the interdependence of man, the environment, the quality of our food, and the quality of our health. Our profession can lead the way to a better day on this planet, or we can resign ourselves to becoming merely a trade that provides temporary relaxation. Which will it be? Do you care?
The holidays are upon us. Almost every faith has a major holiday near the end of the year. That is probably not a coincidence. There is a reason for this season and it is not shopping. Take some time to go inside and find what you really believe and what you really want for the next year(s). My wish for you is your wish for you. May you rapidly manifest your greatest vision of yourself but, don't forget, you are not alone. We are all in this together, so put aside some time to work for the good of all. I'll be back with more thoughts next year. Until then, a happy, merry, joyous "holidaze" to you all.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB.
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