resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
July, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 07
Suffering for Profit
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
Never has the direction of our profession been brought into focus more clearly than by the recent legislative activities of our major professional associations. With little, if any, understanding of the professional regulatory mechanism, our associations are working hard to pass massage licensing laws, state by state. They obviously only have themselves in mind, not the profession and certainly not the public.
At one time, the AMTA was the association working for regulation and the ABMP was the association working against it. Times have changed. The two have now teamed up against us. Most professions, through their associations, are constantly working to expand their scope of practice to better serve the public. Not our associations. They are working for themselves so they can say, "We passed a law." Never mind the laws they are passing are deeding away huge portions of our traditional scope of practice. Who cares about joint mobilization, stretching and exercise? We'll trade them for a new law. One new law defines what a massage parlor is relative to us. Great - we've just legally defined adult entertainment as a part of massage.
On pessimistic days, I see our profession merging into adult entertainment, with the boundary being very unclear and no one really caring. How many hours does it take to train a prostitute? What anatomy must they know?
Of course, there is no set amount of anatomy a massage therapist must know. One hundred hours sometimes is specified, but 100 hours of what? According to the recently passed law in Massachusetts, therapists are forbidden from doing exercise, period. Better not be seen in a health club if you are a therapist in that state. A new law being proposed in a major northeast state will forbid us from doing joint mobilization, among other things. This precedent will now be the standard demanded by the dark forces of allopathy for all future laws and, of course, they will now add even more demands to limit us. The physical therapists have been given the charge to negate us. We're letting them win.
Any muscle-head in a health club, with no qualifications whatsoever other than large biceps, can give the public stretches and exercise, but massage therapists can't. Thanks, AMTA and ABMP - great job. You've done a great job of selling us down the river.
If you like the laws being passed by your associations, you should let them know. However, if you don't, it's even more important to let them know. Call the AMTA at (877) 905-2700 or the ABMP at (800) 458-2267. No law is always better than a poorly written or bad law. Laws that restrict our traditional scope of practice are bad laws.
Who is the winner and who is the loser when bad laws are passed? The associations and the schools win. The schools get to keep grinding out minimally trained therapists and the associations keep signing them up. As usual, the public loses because they are denied the full potential of massage therapy care in the name of profit for schools and associations. It's amazing the human suffering we justify in the name of profit, isn't it? At one time, this profession offered an alternative to the profit-driven allopathic model. I fear that time is nearly gone. Only you, through your involvement, can save alternative health care. Do you care?
More Sauce, Please
Do you know what the massage lubricant you're using is made from? There is some very dangerous stuff being sold as massage oil, lotion and gels. As lotion gets cheaper and cheaper, do you really think it's getting better and better? You put it on your patient/client for an hour or so at a time, now and then. You put it on yourself every session. Many colleagues are developing skin reactions to massage products. Worse, some are developing liver problems. Even clients are reacting negatively to some of the products being put on them. Read the labels on your massage products. If you see terms such as Quaternium-15 (or any of the Quaterniums), which are harsh; skin-sensitizers; BHA/BHT, which are linked to cellular changes in lab experiments; or maybe glyceryl cocoate ethoxylate (a water dispersant that can cause skin irritation/sensitivity), you should seriously consider why you're exposing yourself and your patients to these chemicals, and maybe find a cleaner, more natural product.
By the way, just because something says it's natural or even organic on the front label doesn't mean it really is. For example, Splenda, the artificial sweetener, starts with pure sugar, but there is little resemblance to the natural substance once it is processed. It's buyer beware, as it should be. However, that places the responsibility on you, the buyer, to become educated and aware of exactly what you are buying or using.
Even More on RLS
Interesting information continues to come in on restless leg syndrome (RLS). The following comes from Valerie Whiting, MS, OTR/L, LMT, in Knoxville, Tenn. I find it quite insightful, as it correlates with some qigong information I have come across recently that says a lot of our problems come from lack of walking in a full and correct gait pattern. "The RLS folks have habitual short stride length, so the limit may be from hip, knee or even ankle injury, but the problem is that stretch doesn't occur as it does naturally in a long, easy walking stride. Personally, I find that with people sitting on the job, tight quads limit the stride length. That concept is the base of my assessment for RLS complaints." Send in any RLS information you would like to share and I will pass it along in a future issue.
As this is the July issue, Happy Birthday, America! Have a great 4th of July. See you in September.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, 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.