resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
April, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 04
We Get Letters & E-mail
By Editorial Staff
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters relating to the publication's content. Letters may be edited for space and clarity, and published in a future issue or online. Please send all correspondence by e-mail to .
Just wanted to say how very much I enjoy reading the articles [by Rita Woods]. The debut article in January was one that I related to on a personal level. Then came the next two articles and the timing couldn't have been more perfect, as I am new to teaching. It has helped. I look forward to more articles.
Jackie L. Lander, LMT
Why We Don't Need Government Regulation of Massage
I support the letter by Kay Gustin, LMT in the Feb. 2008 issue saying that we do not need state government regulating the business of massage. I am a massage therapist with a business in Wasilla, Alaska, a state which does not have any state licensing regulations for massage. We recognize that massage is a healing art that has been practiced for thousands of years and has been handed down from elders to grandparents to parents and to their children.
Most of our cities in Alaska are Native American (First Peoples), so massage is a part of their heritage and traditional medical practice. For a central government thousands of miles away to require us all to take 500 hours of formal training in a school thousands of miles away from our homes and villages would insult our elders. Is their careful teaching worth nothing? Furthermore, this is a ridiculous proposition for us economically. Licensing regulations serve private schools and other special-interest profit motives rather than the interest of our people. Many states, and even the municipalities of Anchorage and Fairbanks, require a GED to study massage and to secure the required license to practice massage therapy. Fortunately, most of the state of Alaska does not require this. What does having a high school diploma or GED have to do with massage except throw up a made-up hurdle to prevent competition in the market?
Kay Gustin is keenly perceptive when she points out that chiropractors have been state regulated and licensed for more than 50 years, but that this has not brought respect down upon them from most medical professionals. Indeed, respect must be gained on the merits of one's work.
Although, the municipalities of Anchorage and Fairbanks are unique in Alaska for having licensure requirements, they allow apprenticeship instead of schooling. However, these municipalities are under intense pressure from special interests to reverse this wise alternative. I think apprenticeships in a hands-on profession such as massage therapy are the only way to gain the skill and knowledge actually required to do the job.
But, it is quite important for massage therapists trained in apprenticeships to learn to work together with western medical professionals in a mutually beneficial partnership. This partnership will help bring respect to our profession, which government licensure regulation can never do. No hourly or yearly requirements on apprenticeships should be imposed, since a signature of an elder qualified to teach massage stating that a student is ready to practice is sufficient. Lobbyists for special interests stand in the way of such sensible alternatives in the interest of money in states where massage therapy is regulated.
Some therapists who support state licensure of massage believe that by fabricating hurdles making it difficult for people to get licensed, they will make more money. This anti-competitive behavior prevents many skillful and talented massage therapists, trained by their elders, from competing in a fair marketplace and it literally takes food from their tables. This evil practice should be acknowledged and stopped. One way to counter this constant lobby from these special interests is for us to write our state representatives to not support state licensure of massage therapy in states where this has not yet been imposed, and to reverse state licensure in licensed states, because this is a waste of our tax money.
Special interests will argue, "We need licensure regulation and national certification minimum requirements to protect the public from harm." Have you ever heard of a case of an unlicensed massage therapist who has injured the public by massage? That malpractice insurance is available to massage therapists for less than $100 per year proves the very low risk of injury from massage. Clearly, the public does not need any protection by government from massage therapists! Some argue that regulation will stop unethical behavior or blue-massage. The National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork publishes a list of page after page of licensed massage therapists whose certification has been revoked or suspended for unethical behavior in their practice of massage.
As Kay Gustin points out, state regulation has not stopped prostitution in massage. Therapeutic touch is often confused with sexual touch by most people in the United States, because most people in our society suffer from severe touch deprivation (see article by Daniel N. Russell, "Touch-Starvation: Severe Cost; Simple Cure," Alaska Wellness, Nov/Dec 2003, p 32-33). This confusion can be overcome and eliminated in part by education as Kay Gustin suggests, but this is not enough. We, as a society, also need to satisfy our human need for touch in positive and nurturing ways. Enlightenment is required at this time of violence in our culture.
Our government relies on a free market to solve problems in any market, and to ferret out bad practitioners in every business practice. Good massage therapists will, naturally, seek education and put those who do not provide positive results out of business. We should allow our free market to work to provide us with the best therapy, rather than support "Bolshevik" state licensure bureaucracies.
Daniel Russell, MS, LMT, NCTMB
Join the conversation
Comments are encouraged, but you must follow our User Agreementcomments powered by Disqus
Keep it civil and stay on topic. No profanity, vulgar, racist or hateful comments or personal attacks. Anyone who chooses to exercise poor judgement will be blocked. By posting your comment, you agree to allow MPA Media the right to republish your name and comment in additional MPA Media publications without any notification or payment.