resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
November, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 11
The Swedish Movement Cure
By Judi Calvert, LMP
As we continue on our journey to learn about the origins of Swedish massage after founder Peter Ling passed away in 1839, we have several people to thank for continuing his work.
One of Ling's pupils, a professor Branting, was his immediate successor, taking up the post of director of the Royal Central Gymnastic Institute in Stockholm.He lived at the Institute for 40 years and was largely responsible for publishing Ling's theories.
During that time, many doctors studied at the Institute for the required two to three years, after which they brought Ling's teachings back to one of the 30 institutions worldwide that taught his series of curative movements. Many subsequently published the results of their education in medical papers, adding their own research to create a body of work that shared a common origin.
One such student, Hartvig Nissen, wrote a book called A Manual of Instruction for Giving Swedish Movement and Massage Treatment (1889) because he felt that "a great many physicians, as well as others, consider this treatment to be a humbug, but this is due partly to prejudice and partly to their entire ignorance of the system."
Another student, Dr. George H. Taylor of New York, wrote an Exposition of the Swedish Movement Cure (1860). Taylor felt that it was critical to study anatomy and physiology in order to have a good understanding of the principles of the so-called movement cure, and that this common ground would bring together physicians of differing schools of thought.
Taylor analyzed Ling's movements with the goal of creating a combination that would meet the needs of the human body. He believed that numerous applications of the movements should be promoted as "a science and an art."
So what were the distinctions between the movements, gymnastics and exercises that Ling taught and those taught by his followers? Ling originally defined his movements as "every exercise of which the direction and duration are determined." Each movement is then, according to him, "an idea expressed by the body."
He broke his movements down into two categories: active and passive. Active movements involved voluntary muscular contraction on the part of the patient, whereas passive movements were performed by the "operator," who would manipulate the patient's tissue through stroking, kneading, pressing or percussion.
Nissen, Taylor and Branting practiced both active and passive movements, but each put their own spin on Ling's teachings. For example, one of Branting's biggest achievements was creating "Sitting Gymnastic Exercises," which students could perform between lessons without leaving their seats. The governments of Sweden and Norway used these movements in their public schools. Wouldn't it be nice if schools did this today? Sitting all day is so hard on children.
Taylor, for his part, gave examples of passive movements that included clapping, knocking, stroking, kneading, pulling, shaking and vibration. He further divided these into "quieting" movements of rotation and friction and "purgative" movements of kneading and pressing. These are the strokes used today when therapists perform Swedish massage.
He taught other doctors that Ling's movements were "mechanical agencies directed either upon the whole system or a part of it, for the purpose of inducing determinate effects upon its vital actions, and generally having reference to its pathological state."
Doctors at the time performed these movements to help cure many kinds of disease. Indigestion, "nervousness" and pulmonary consumption were prominent physical problems of the time, and doctors would recommend exercises to their patients instead of the drugs prescribed today. But it was an uphill battle. The general public was more interested in the development of chemistry and the "curative value of drugs," and doctors treating patients with Ling's movements had to repeatedly remind them that they had been successfully used for centuries.
Two such groundbreaking doctors were Dutch physician Dr. Johan Mezger and Dr. John Harvey Kellogg of the United States. Kellogg was one of the first doctors to train nurses in Ling's teachings at his Battle Creek Sanitarium in Michigan, where he had more continuous experience with the massage movement cure than at any other center in the U.S.
Mezger systematized Ling's active and passive movements into the classifications that therapists use today: effleurage, petrissage, friction, tapotement and vibration.
We have all of these doctors to thank for continuing the great work of Peter Ling and the Swedish Movement Cure. All of these men were true pioneers, and it is my hope that the therapists of today will honor them and never forget what they have done for the advancement of massage.
Click here for more information about Judi Calvert, LMP.
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