resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Misconceptions & Opportunities With Medicare
As I speak around the country on how to properly document Medicare patient encounters, I get questions regarding opting out of Medicare. There are many misconceptions about opting out of Medicare, including just what it means to opt out.
Excited to Share the Science of Chiropractic: An Interview With Dr. Heidi Haavik
Dr. Heidi Haavik has become known in the circle of chiropractic researchers as not only a rising star, but also one willing to do research that can have a major impact in the scientific world and how chiropractic is perceived.
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.
Identify & Adjust the Apex Posterior Sacrum
Low back pain involving an apex posterior sacrum (+θX-axis misalignment) typically presents with signs of lumbosacral joint impingement or facet syndrome.
Designing a Fitness Plan (Part 4): Blending Pain Relief With Healthy Aging
Pain relief is still the No. 1 reason patients come to my office. However, most of my patients have other goals as well, such as: "I want to lose 10 to 20 pounds"; "I feel old and want to slow down the aging process"; "My doctor says I am becoming a diabetic and need to exercise"; or "I'm tired and want more energy."
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.
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.
Let's Streamline Your Front Desk
Your front office can be your greatest source of efficiency or a constant bottleneck. Increasing the productivity of this area without sacrificing the quality of patient interaction can be a little tricky.
F4CP Launches New Social Media Campaign
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has launched a new service to help member doctors: a social media campaign called "Accelerator."
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.
Specialized Pro-Resolving Mediators: 21st Century Inflammation Fighters
Specialized pro-resolving mediators, or SPMs, are a portion of the omega-3 fatty-acid spectrum that have been shown to have a powerful effect on reducing inflammation.
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.
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.
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?
News in Brief
Northwestern Student Honored for Addressing Concussions Head-On; Northwestern Announces New CFO; Life U. to Provide Unique Opportunity.
How Many of Your Patients Have Sarcopenia?
Figure 1 demonstrates the typical appearance of sarcopenia in the paravertebral muscles. Have you considered evaluating your patients for this problem? Sarcopenia is the progressive loss of skeletal muscle mass and function that affects the older population.
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.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
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.
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.
An Alarming Lack of Accountability
Accountability seems to be a lost quality today. The simple act of taking responsibility and doing the right thing just doesn't happen as often as it should. Maybe it is the litigious nature of our society.
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.
September, 2011, Vol. 11, Issue 09
What is Your Play Personality?
By Sharon Puszko, PhD, LMT
When the last time you played? I'm sure there are some people who can quickly give an account of what they did yesterday that constituted play for them. There also will be many who will pause with a furrowed brow and remain silent as they try to remember when they last did something just for the fun of it.
Whether it's cooking a new recipe, going on a hike, watching a movie, fixing up an old car or reading a book, play is a primal and necessary part of our lives. Especially in a competition-based culture such as ours, play is essential to being a productive member of society. As helpers and caregivers, it is crucial that we as massage therapists give ourselves time to play. It is impossible to help others heal and relax when we aren't relaxed ourselves. Playing helps us re-boot our systems and bond with others, which, in turn, makes us better therapists.
Merriam-Webster defines play as, "a recreational activity; especially the spontaneous activity of children." However, the types of play that exist are as varied as the people who engage in them. As adults, we often do not think about, or spend a significant amount of time, playing. Notice that the definition itself refers specifically to children. While play is crucial for the intellectual and social development of our children, it is also important for us in adulthood.
We are learning that it would be beneficial to change the ending of that entry to "children and adults." Current research demonstrates that not only have Americans made work and competition a priority, but that we are sacrificing playfulness and creativity for them. For instance, over the past 30 years, time spent at work has jumped 10 hours a week. Therefore, learning how to play more at work has become a popular subject these days. However, the nature of our work as massage therapists puts a limit on how much play we can integrate into our work. While some clients enjoy playful banter and laughing throughout a massage, others would never return if we did not respect the quiet time they look forward to while in a session. This makes it all the more important that we try to incorporate play into our lives outside of work.
So, if we simply work less, will we spend more time playing? Not necessarily. Play and work are not mutually exclusive; rather, one cannot survive without the other. A life without play is not one filled with work: it is a life filled with depression. For example, the work we find most fulfilling usually reflects the type of play we engaged in as a child. Does this mean I spent a lot of my childhood volunteering massages to my friends? Not necessarily. But it does mean that I was an active, social child who enjoyed problem solving, which Stuart Brown, M.D., the founder of the National Institute for Play, would say meant I have three different types of "play personalities."
After years spent gathering "play histories" from people, Brown noticed several archetypes that play preferences usually fall into. While some people might fit into just one type, others might have several preferences for the type of play they enjoy. An easy way to start putting more play into your life is to identify what type of "personality/personalities" the play you enjoy fits into.
I've listed what I feel are the more common types below. You can find the complete list in his book. These "types" can be used as a guideline to determining the type of play you prefer, and help you remember how to put some fun back into your life.
Someone who enjoys comedy shows, making people laugh and finding the humor in any situation enjoys the Joker type of play. It is the most basic form of play, and is repeatedly found throughout recent history as a species. Think of the saying, "Laughter is the best medicine."
The Kinesthete is the person who taps their foot, twirls their hair or rocks back and forth during an exam. Kinesthetes are happiest when they are moving, whether that be playing basketball, walking, or cleaning the house. I am also inclined to believe that the majority of massage therapists — those that truly enjoy their work — are all or partly Kinisthetes, since our work is very physical.
The unique, the different, the unknown is what drives the Explorer personality. Visiting a new park, reading about a new scientific theory, or trying a new cuisine are all activities someone with a dominant Explorer personality would prefer.
People who have an Artist/Creator play personality find pleasure in creating things: planting a garden, cooking, writing music, or even fixing up an old car. Some might share their creations with others, some may not, but the point is simply to create.
Fun is found in the imagination for people with a dominant Storyteller personality. Some examples include people who like to write, perform, play Dungeons & Dragons, watch movies or read books.
No matter what type of play you enjoy, the point is simply to make sure you spend time having fun. It doesn't have to be all fun all the time, but one needs to find a balance between focused work and playfulness. Remember: the opposite of play is not work; it's depression. The more ways we find to incorporate play into our lives, the happier and healthier we will be. This in turn will make us better therapists, which is a good example of how work and play complement each other. So start singing, take a road trip, see a play, or get out your postcard collection and just start having fun!
Sharon Puszko is the owner/director/educator for Day-Break Geriatric Massage Institute. She may be contacted at
or through her Web site: www.daybreak-massage.com.
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