resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Knee Pain From the Kinetic Chain
As practitioners of manual medicine, chiropractors often treat patients suffering from knee pain.
Vaccines and Chiropractic: Evidence-Based Medicine or Medical Dogma?
Right or wrong, the chiropractic profession has historically been against vaccinations. However, a growing trend within the profession is seeking to reverse this position.
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."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
February, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 02
Charting Your Progress: Visuals for Success
By David Kent, LMT, NCTMB
Whether you perform massage in a medical, clinical or spa setting, it's important for clients to feel they are benefitting from treatment. Using visual aids is an excellent way to chart and evaluate a client's progress and charting allows you to show a client their progress. It also helps you and the client stay focused on which course of treatment to pursue.
In my last article, "The Power of the List," I presented my goal-setting questions and a Power List to help you kick-start the process of identifying and achieving your goals for your practice and all areas of your life. Below are tips for using visual aids for your client's benefit, no matter the type of massage setting in which you work. I also describe how I use visual aids in my own practice. These tips will help you gain, maintain and increase the momentum you need to attain your professional goals while you subsequently help your clients.
Few goals are ever achieved in one step, and one massage therapy treatment is rarely going to resolve the core cause of a client's stress, pain or dysfunction. Many clients want instant gratification - the "magic bullet" or the one-treatment fix that will immediately solve their problem. However, it's incumbent upon us to educate our clients about the accumulated benefits of a series of treatments versus a single treatment here and there. Clients who make a commitment to regular treatment often are quickly amazed at the positive impact it has on their quality of life.
Here's a brief quiz. Imagine you are driving down the highway and the "low oil" warning signal displays on the dashboard. You take the next exit and drive to the nearest gas station where you check the oil level and see that the engine is low by two quarts. Should you:
Obviously, the best answer to the question is "E." You need to schedule the car for service, not only for a filter and oil change, but for a complete checkup. You make this decision on simple information that would be obvious to any person. It's not too hard to see that the car in this scenario is a stand-in for the human body. And this valuable machine needs attention and care to run correctly and last for the long run. Ultimately, it's cheaper to maintain the body's health than to pay for a complete breakdown in the long run in the form of lost work, doctor bills, medication, pain and a reduced quality of life.
The point of this exercise is to demonstrate the importance of gathering information the right way at the right time. For example, a client complains of headaches that occur three to four times a week and require prescription medication. However, even with increasing medication, the client frequently misses work. This client also has secondary complaints of neck, shoulder and upper back pain that disrupt sleeping patterns. In this example, my short-term goals are to reduce the headaches and the neck pain intensity, frequency and duration, as well as to improve sleeping patterns.
Here is where I start collecting my visuals to create my starting point of reference so I can measure the client's progress from this point forward. To begin, I have the client fill out intake forms, questionnaires and a pain-scale chart before and after treatment. Other aids I use to establish a baseline include documenting range of motion; conducting muscle and orthopedic assessments; using trigger-point charts; taking postural analysis photos; and evaluating gait.
Depending on your massage therapy setting, you probably will adjust which visual aids you use in your practice. Most clients, regardless of the setting, find it both useful and comforting when the therapist uses charts and models to describe their condition and note their progress.
Lastly, we all need a little encouragement to produce the results we want in our lives. Often, however, we have no one around to motivate us. Every day, I list the things I am grateful for, as well as the things I did to move myself closer to my goals. I also ask my clients to do the same. A client with chronic headaches might be grateful for finding you, the massage therapist and, thanks to continued treatment they might be grateful for missing less work and sleeping better at night. This client might be following your recommendations and stretching and exercising every day as a means of reducing the frequency of the headaches.
As for me, I am grateful for my health and my practice. Whether it's learning a new skill, following innovative practice-management techniques or using visual aids, I make a point of doing something every single day that will help me reach my professional and personal goals.
Click here for more information about David Kent, LMT, NCTMB.
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