resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
November, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 11
The Ugly Quilt Grows
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
Another patch has been added to the ugly patchwork quilt of massage regulation. This time the great state of New York has passed an amendment to their massage law restricting free trade and interstate commerce in continuing education.The Alliance for Massage Therapy Education and National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork did the right thing by opposing it. American Massage Therapy Association lobbied in favor of it.
I hope all you New York therapists feel you get your money's worth out of the new mandatory continuing education fee of $45 at each renewal. (SB 5431, Section 6)
Further, to become a sponsor of continuing education in New York, one will have to pay a fee of $900. It will depend on how the administrative rules are drawn up if each presenter has to pay $900 or if one sponsor can host multiple presenters. Either way, but especially if the former, the fee along with the administrative expenses of the inevitable paperwork will all be priced into the cost of seminars in New York. Why would you do this to yourselves?
I loved New York. They had the guts to have a higher entry-level standard and to administer their own licensing exam. Plus, they required no continuing education for renewal. This is the way it should be. Therapists should take continuing education because they want to learn more skills to help more people, not because they are coerced to. The public is not being harmed because therapists do not take continuing education. The public is just being underserved. While this is causing a backlash against our profession and among other things keeps us from reaching our potential, the problem is really at the entry-level which is way too low and for the most part poorly executed. Treating the symptoms by legislating continuing education at a mere 12 hours a year is an allopathic approach and will be about as effective at elevating our profession as allopathic health care is at achieving wellness in the general population.
I still love you New York and all my colleagues there. The real point is: When is our profession going to stop punishing itself with poorly written, dysfunctional, punitive laws? The only hope I see is the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards development of a model massage law. This is a huge project and will take more time than it should because of the egos of this profession and the tyranny of the minorities, but it will be worth the wait. Until then, except for administrative necessity, the massage profession should stop adding to the patchwork quilt of lousy laws. When we have a well-written, model law that actually benefits our profession, while of course protecting the public, we can then go forward with a united effort, as most other alternative professions have done, and achieve beneficial regulation with portability and consistent standards.
Stop Politics as Usual
He who robs Peter to pay Paul will always have Paul's support. However, our society cannot go on indefinitely under the faulty assumption that everyone can live at the expense of his or her neighbors. This can only lead to an eventual catastrophic financial collapse - and that is well under way now. How's your business and family budget? The ruling class creates the current economic malaise, deliberately. If we keep sending them back to Washington they will continue to do the same thing - consolidate power and wealth for themselves and their major campaign contributors at our expense.
The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money.
Alexis de Tocqueville
It is believed that Professor Alexander Tyler, a Scottish history professor in the 1700s wrote: "The average age of the world's greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence:
From bondage to spiritual faith;
Where do you think we are on this scale now? Many believe we are on the next to the bottom rung, or near the "apathy to dependence" phase of the professor's theory with over 30 percent of the nation's population already having reached the "governmental dependency" phase.
The only hope to turn this around is to get rid of the ruling class. The only peaceful way to do that is to vote out every incumbent at every election until we have working citizens instead of party hacks of the ruling class running our country. It will be painful, but not nearly as painful as the eventual alternative - tyranny.
What does this have to do with massage? The reality is that your patient's freedom of choice in health care, their freedom to chose to come to you, can only exist in a free society. Tyrants want control of your health care because the government that controls the health of its people controls its people. The existence of massage as therapy, delivered by independent first-door providers depends on preserving freedom of choice in health care. That freedom is in great jeopardy at this moment. Do your part to preserve it. Throw out the ruling class - vote against every incumbent, forever.
As of November 2, the election season is over. I promise not to beat this drum again for two years.
On a much happier note, the Holidaze will soon be upon us. As the Beatles sang - "Every year it's Christmas at the end of every year." Every major faith has a holiday during the 7 Sacred weeks. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could all celebrate this time with respect, tolerance, love, and peace? My wish is that we can all be reading this column next year in a more healthy, prosperous, peaceful world. My sincere thanks to all of you who read this column. Happy shopping and may you sell lots of gift certificates - but remember, it's about something bigger than that.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB.
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