resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Unlevel Pelvis in the High-School Athlete: Exploring Causes and Effects
The unlevel pelvis is all too common in the high-school athlete and if not detected, will likely cause a lifetime of musculoskeletal issues. Any provider who doesn't look for this common finding is missing critical information.
Mind-Body in Motion
A central goal of low back pain treatment involves the correction of dysfunctional movement patterns believed to be responsible for spinal overload.
Cell Health (Part 2)
Dr. Barsten, your book is about restoring "cell vitality." Can you briefly define the term? Cell vitality is more than the mere absence of symptoms or pathology, but optimum structural, physiological and energetic health.
It might have been a miserable start to the day in the heart of downtown San Diego. A heavy rain had soaked the large homeless population congregating near the intersection of Third Avenue and Ash Street as they waited for a free breakfast to be served at the First Lutheran Church on the corner.
Old TCM Sayings: Treat the Front to Treat the Back
Chinese medicine college was, and always will be, a memorable time. It was a time of massive personal and professional growth.
Case Histories from Bali: Treating Balinese Chidren with TCB and Shonishin
When I moved to the island of Bali in 2005, I offered my services in Bumi Sehat, which means Healthy Mother Earth, a free birthing center for poor and disadvantaged local women located in Ubud.
Are You Really a Healthy Eater?
I always giggle a little bit (to myself) when someone comes into my office and informs me that they are a healthy eater. What exactly does that mean? Does that mean they eat sugar in moderation? And what's that, exactly?
The Conscious Evolution of Healing, Part 2
The idea of transmission is very important in the Chinese medical classics. According to author Claude Larre, the ancient Chinese were highly interested in the connection between things. Nothing was looked at as an isolated entity.
It's Time to Create a Strong Acupuncture Footprint
Footprints in the sand. Footprints in the snow. Where do these footprints go? Some are big, some are small, but footprints are made by all.
Neuroscience: Where Western Medicine and Chinese Medicine Can Come Together
The recent advances in neuroscience are truly incredible. With this expansion of scientific knowledge, I would like to see even more research into the neuroscientific basic of acupuncture and Chinese Medicine.
Connecting the Dots
In 2002, I published a book on patient examination procedures that included information on the procedural coding of the recommended examinations. The book should have been published in 2000, but I had trouble finding a publisher. Why?
Help Your Parents Stay Engaged
As much as parents may wish it were so, children do not come with an instruction manual. There's no "how to" that can be followed and no two children are alike, so what works with one generally won't work with the next.
The Top Seven Website Mistakes Clinics Make
The majority of acupuncture clinics finally have a website for their business. Having a website is crucial for being found online through Google, Facebook and review sites like Yelp.
Finding Balance in the Clinic
This past December, I celebrated 11 years in practice. I seriously don't know where the time went. I feel beyond blessed and grateful to be practicing our profound and beautiful medicine and to be helping guide my patients restore a state of optimal health.
News in Brief
An Encouraging Sign at Palmer; NBCE Announces Retirement of Longtime Director of Testing.
The CDC came out with a report in March 2013 that suggests 1 in 50 children will be diagnosed somewhere on the autism spectrum – significantly higher than the 1 in 86 figure that came out in 2007. What does this mean moving forward, particularly for children?
Reflections: The Art of Teaching Asian Medicine
Over the past three decades, my global workshops have been translated into German, Swiss German, French, Romansch, Spanish, Lithuanian and Xhosa. Time to offer you new teachers a few tips!
Leaving Footprints on Capitol Hill: Tribute to Dr. Kenneth Luedtke (1930-2014)
It was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Dr. Ken Luedtke.
Put the Social Back Into Social Media
Social media is more than a passing fad, it is definitely here to stay. Social media apps and channels of distribution may evolve, but the concept of social media is now big business and a part of all our lives.
Acupuncture and Homeopathy: Bioenergetic Brothers
Acupuncture and homeopathy share an important healing principle: bioenergetics. "Bio" means "life," so bioenergetics is literally "life energy."
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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