Lost A Sale, But Initial Phone Consultations — A Big Part Of Brilliant Customer Service
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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.
How One Little Symbol (#) Gets You More Patients
Are you struggling to get more fans or followers for your acupuncture practice? Or are looking for ways to simply connect with your patients? Or do you just want to know how to keep them engaged (comments, retweeting, liking and sharing)?
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 to 4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
What Does Success Mean to You?
Recently, I was asked to speak to young, budding businesswomen about running a successful business — and at first I thought, "Me? You want me to speak to others about success?!"
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 Nectar of Plants: Essential Oils and Chinese Medicine
Essential oils are a very hot topic these days, especially with the likes of the Ebola virus and the resurgence of measles lurking in our awareness, but when I first became interested in Chinese medicine, essential oils weren't on the radar screen for acupuncturists.
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.
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.
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.
Acupuncture in the U.K. Today: A Personal View
When asked to write a short piece on the current state of the U.K. acupuncture profession, my first response was to say it has all been relatively quiet.
Use Technology to Gain New Patients and Improve Efficiency
From the smartphone in your pocket to your microwave oven, advancements in technology have made almost every aspect of our lives easier.
The Source-Luo Point Combination
The luo collaterals are part of the acupuncture channel system presented in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu (The Nei Jing). The function and clinical application of the luo mai are primarily presented in chapter 10 of the Ling Shu, however, they are also found in others chapters in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu.
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.
Acupuncture and the Pulse
In 1991, I attended a martial arts workshop hosted coincidentally by Sung Baek, a martial artist and the head of his lineage as a Korean trained acupuncturist. I was enamored by the details Sung could attain from the pulse, as told to me by some of his apprentices.
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.
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.
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.
The Year to Make Things Happen
It is hard to believe that the Year of the Ram – 2015 is half over. Time seems to be moving especially fast. This is the year for things to happen for the acupuncture profession.
The Modern Acupuncturist
You studied ancient Chinese medicine, but I'll bet you don't practice it! Contrary to popular belief, our medicine has evolved A LOT over the years. Let's take a brief walk through history and discover the differences between ancient and modern acupuncturists.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
Breath: The Movement of Oxygen and Energy
I remember with surprising clarity the first time a patient started crying during an acupuncture treatment I was giving. This is now quite a long time ago, back in 1999, when I was a student.
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.
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.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
Calculating Billable Units
I recently learned of an office that was audited based on the number of acupuncture sessions performed in one day. Is there a maximum number of sessions that can be performed in one day?
TMF 2015 Scholarships
The Trudy McAlister Foundation (TMF), a nonprofit organization established to support students who are on track to make contributions either to clinical practice and/or to the understanding of the role of Traditional Oriental Medicine, has announced the 2015 scholarship recipients.
October, 2012, Vol. 12, Issue 10
A Professional Guide to Handling Change
By Terry Russell
Change. That inevitable situation that we all are faced with that makes us leave the secure area we are comfortable with and make potentially difficult choices. Whether it is personal or professional, we all strive for what is best in our world.For many, the fear of change prevents them from venturing away from their comfort zone so they choose to stay with the tried and true. A nice way of staying put.
Over the past few years, great strides have been made in the lubricant industry. Have you tried any of the new products from the professional manufacturers in our industry? There are lubricants that are olive oil based, creams that are truly all purpose, sheet friendly oils and lotions from sustainable plants, just to name a few.
Choosing the Right Product
When choosing a professional grade product, the guess work has been removed which should help alleviate any fear. For many, we start out using whatever oil, lotion and cream our school used. Before we realize it, we are five years into our career, still using the same lubricant. Think about how your clientele has changed over the past five years. How has your basic technique changed? Any new modalities added to your toolbox? When was the last time you used a new product?
I constantly hear from loyal customers that, "I love XYZ product and have been using it for six years," or "I only use XYZ brand." While brand and product loyalty is important, it is equally important to stay current with trends. Just like technology, our industry is consistently evolving into greater, more advanced products and techniques. Take oil as an example. Massage oil used to be so greasy and many times only considered when the client was hairy or extremely dry. Today's market offers many light, water soluble oils that are not only easy on the sheets, but also don't leave the client feeling like they have been marinating for the past hour. Many now are all natural and without the synthetic preservatives and still allow a long shelf life. There are a few that actually have an indefinite shelf life: (hint) fractionated coconut oil!
Lotions have evolved into a rich, vast category. No longer just a moisturizing tool, some lotions are versatile enough to handle your most complex days – going from Swedish to deep tissue without missing a beat. One of the best changes with newer lotions is the slower absorption rate allowing this to be the perfect choice in a varied technique session. The fact that most lotions completely absorb into the skin is sure to please even the most finicky client. Today's lotions often leave the client's skin feeling so fresh and vibrant that it makes a great retail product allowing for extra income to the therapist. Always keep an extra eight ounce bottle handy for when the client asks, "Where can I get that lotion you used on me?"
Creams by far the trickiest to find the proper match. I highly suggest trying two or three small sizes of various creams that interest you. Try them on several different clients and several different methods before making up your mind. Cream is no longer just for deep work. Some creams turn into lotion when heated to the body's temperature. Some are infused with moisturizers and some are safe for the face as well as the body.
Gels are a great compromise when you are unsure whether you need an oil or a lotion. Combining both oil and lotion, manufacturers have given us the luxury of having the slip of oil while absorbing like a lotion. The brand's performance can vary as greatly as creams so I suggest trying one or two to see if they work in your practice.
While samples are a nice idea theoretically – practically, this idea falls short. Not only is it costly for the manufacturer (who could be spending that money on research and development for new products), it is unjust to the therapist interested in trying a new product. A ketchup packet size of oil, lotion or cream cannot show the true quality and benefits of working with that product – it is just to give the therapist an idea of the performance. The best way to really put a product to the test is to buy a small size (some creams come in as little as 4 ounces). This way the therapist can try the product with different modalities because no one wants to buy a different lubricant for each different modality they perform. Also, it is a chance to put the product to the test with several different clients. No two client's skin condition and absorption rate is the same.
Another factor that all major lubricant manufacturers have embraced is going green. Whether going organic or using sustainable products, a therapist does not have to look far to find an organic or natural oil, lotion or cream. From the containers to the product, it is easy to go green in your practice. The majority of the oils, lotion and creams in our industry are American made as well. Your experiment into new products will be helping the U.S. economy by supporting local business. Even in these tough economic times, our lubricant manufacturers have been busy in research and development, bringing the best ideas to market. Ideas that will sustain our market help our industry grow and aid us in providing the best possible care to our clients.
Looking at all the choices that are at your fingertips can be overwhelming. We are fortunate to be in an industry where manufacturers and distributors alike have websites and customer service representatives to answer your questions – from basic to technical, the answer is only a call or click away.
Inventory Your Products
Take a moment. Look on your shelves at your oils, lotions and creams. When was the last time a new brand or new type shared that space? Do you have any consumer-based products occupying that space? Mass merchants and big box retailers are not the places to shop for professional grade products. What you use in your treatments clearly defines you as a professional therapist. Leave the consumer grade products for the consumer. This way, when you do experiment with products, you can rest assured that the professional grade products that you are considering are made with the best ingredients, tested for our industry and will represent you well to your clients. The last thing you want your client to see is a bottle of lotion on your table that they saw on clearance at a retail store earlier in the week.
Still using that same oil, lotion or cream that you were taught with eight years ago? There is a whole new world out there. Venture out. Experiment. That new professional grade oil, lotion or cream you consider today could help redefine you tomorrow. Change. It is an inevitable situation that arises in all our lives. We can choose to be safe, secure and complacent or we can grab the challenge by the horns and make it a positive force.
Your product choice is a direct reflection of who you are. Always use professional grade products. Every so often, change your oil, lotion and cream. Keep your clients guessing what wonderful new product you will be using today. This small change can have a huge impact on how you, your name and your practice are received. Are you trendy, up to date on new products or stuck in a decade past? Isn't it time for a little change?
Terry Russell has been involved in the massage community since 1999. His previous career includes being a full time therapist at Spa Palazzo in the Boca Raton Resort & Club, as well as owning a successful private practice. As the Director of Sales – Schools, Distributors & Franchises Division at Universal Companies, his efforts are now focused on bringing schools, distributors and franchises the best of equipment and supplies with outstanding customer service. For more information, visit www.universalcompanies.com.
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