resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Apple Takes a Bite Out of Research
The more than 700 million iPhone users have just been given the opportunity to "do their part to advance medical research."
If Your Pro-Chiropractic Governor Resigned, Would You Be Prepared?
John Kitzhaber, MD, recently re-elected to a historic fourth term as Oregon governor, has resigned among alleged ethics violations by his fiancée' and first lady, Cylvia Hayes. I developed a personal friendship with John and consider him a good friend.
Functional Impingement of the Hip (Part 2): Rehab Exercises
I find functionally impinged hips that don't move properly on so many of my patients. (See part 1 of this article for a description of the condition.)
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.
Talking to Patients About Medial Branch Neurotomy (Part 2)
Even when lumbar facet denervation (medial branch neurotomy) is successful, relief is rarely complete or permanent. Smuck, et al., reviewed 16 articles and found the average duration of >50 percent pain relief for an initial procedure was nine months.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Trouble in the Wellness Waters?
Call me old-fashioned, paranoid or just old, but I do remember graduating from chiropractic college in the late '70s in the midst of the Wilk v AMA lawsuit.
News in Brief
Dr. Frank Nicchi Receives Award at ACC-RAC; Sherman College Expands International Influence.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
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.
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.
Teach Your Patients About External Healing Applications
Since the skin is the body's largest organ, and is able to respond to both internal and external stimulations, communicate sensations to the brain, protect the body, breathe and even excrete toxins, it can be an excellent source of healing.
Applauding a Legacy of Leadership
Founding Palmer West President, John Miller, DC, HCD (Hon.), FICA (Hon.), a 1954 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, passed away March 8, 2015 at age 83.
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.
September, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 09
A Massage as Good as Gold
Submitted By Lori Schafer
Anna Gammal has spent the past 10 years specializing in sports massage and dedicating her life's work and focus to serving competitive athletes. A former 10,000-meter national champion in her native homeland of Greece, she watched the recent competitions in Beijing from a perspective far different than the 200 million viewers who tuned in to see records fall and hear anthems play.The emotional highs and lows touched her deeply, but Anna's thoughts frequently turned to her time spent with Olympic athletes from around the world and the benefits she has been able to provide by introducing massage into their training regimens.
Bringing personal experience, professional passion and therapeutic massage to serious athletes is a day-to-day privilege for Gammal, a 2000 graduate of Bancroft School of Massage Therapy in Worcester, Mass. She shares her knowledge of the aches, pains, joys and disappointments of the best athletic competitors in the world.
"Massage therapy allows me to relieve pain in others and to assist anyone in reaching their higher potential and ability. ... Providing what someone needs individually can be a challenge, but to be part of their transformation is exciting, rewarding and humbling. At the heart of it is the connection you develop with all of these extraordinary people."
Kareem Thompson, who competed in the long jump and 100-meter dash at the 2004 Summer Games in Athens, saw firsthand what Anna was able to provide. "What an athlete feels and what is going on in the body can be different things. Anna was extremely intuitive and put my mind at ease very quickly. We developed a bond of trust that continues to this day. She was a real standout in my experience with massage therapists."
Developing an expertise in sports massage was a natural evolution for Gammal. In Greece, she competed and trained seriously, learning firsthand the importance and impact of massage for keeping the muscles supple and strong. However, it wasn't an automatic transition toward this career. Along the way, Gammal acquired professional experience as a preschool teacher, aerobics instructor and gymnastics teacher.
"From the start, it was clear Anna had all it takes to be successful - she had excellent massage skills, was developing her business skills and was not afraid to work hard to reach her goals," said Greg Hurd, LMT, MA, the director of career development and outreach at Bancroft.
Not long after graduation, Gammal moved into private practice. She founded Body & Beyond Massage Therapy in Hopkinton, Mass., where she treats clinical and sports massage clients such as Boston Marathon runners. She also maintained her close ties to the athletic community back in Greece. Because of her skills, personal background and commitment to the field, she was tapped to organize and co-direct the Olympic massage therapy team for the 2004 Athens Games.
George Kousaleos, BA, LMT, who served on the massage teams in 2000 and 2004, says choosing Gammal was a "no-brainer" when putting together the right group for Athens. As the 2004 Games approached, Kousaleos tried to find entry points for several months but was unsuccessful. Gammal, however, was already making connections in Greece and with the International Olympic Committee.
"Athens was interested in what we created for Salt Lake City [in 1996] and Atlanta. Anna spent several years organizing and recruiting 180 professional massage therapists to serve the world's athletes at the Athens games. Her leadership and hands-on participation were invaluable. Anna was clearly motivated by her own personal life experience as a competitor, but also because of her generosity of heart. She gave time, resources and was a key individual in making the Athens Massage Team the success that it was."
So, why wasn't Gammal in Beijing for the 2008 Olympics? According to Anna, each host country organizes its own massage services; it does not automatically carry over from one Olympics to the next. There were very early discussions with China organizers, but they chose to orchestrate massage services themselves - using only their own people - rather than rely on any outside volunteers.
Gammal continues to serve and advise current Olympic-level athletes and competition officials around the country, in addition to providing massage therapy to elite runners and competitors nationwide. She's been recruited by Olympic athletes and is looking to the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia and the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
"My goal is to keep growing personally while educating people around the world about the benefits and importance of massage therapy in their everyday life," she said. "In terms of the advancement of our industry, there is a coming together that will occur between the body workers and the body scientists who study muscles and fascia. I want to be at the crossroads of that advancement."
Lori Schafer is a managing partner of On Target Communications. For questions or comments, contact Lori at www.ruontarget.com.
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