resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
The X Factor in Clinical Research: The Patient
It was the great baseball legend, former New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra – he of countless aphorisms, each with a mind-bending twist – who once declared, "You can observe a lot by watching."
To The Finish Line With the Help of TCM
When acupuncturist Eddy De Smedt pursued a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine, he knew he wanted to make a difference.
Lime Jello on Morphine
Taste is in the eyes... actually the mouth... of the beholder. My food preferences have changed, lightening from the food of my youth. My parents loved heavy eastern European cuisine and I loved it as a child. Now I enjoy leaner, healthier whole foods.
Simple Ways To Find True Happiness
Patients in our clinics are always seeking happiness. As their health advocate, we need to ensure we inform them that in order to find happiness, they have to make sure to identify what makes them happy in the first place.
5 Ways to Occupy Occupational Health
Despite the progress that has been made to better protect workers, occupational health and safety remains a priority area for many national governmental organizations due to the widespread problem of occupationally related morbidity and mortality.
Web Marketing: Content Is King
Google's sweeping updates to its search algorithms over the past few years have brought a paradigm shift in how you can optimize your chiropractic website to gain maximum marketing leverage.
Saying No to Medicine
An interesting article recently appeared in Men's Journal titled "When to Say No to Your Doctor." The article begins with the summary statement above and effectively arms readers with information that will help them "take more responsibility for your own health care, because you can't be sure anyone else is.
Talking to Patients About Healthy Aging
I've noticed that a particular category of patients seems to make up more and more of my practice – they work out, but still experience lots of degenerative joint disease (DJD) issues.
The Heart Protector
On the physical level, the Pericardium is a double-layered sac of fibrous tissue that envelops the Heart. The space between the layers is filled with serous fluid that protects the Heart from external shock or trauma and lubricates to allow for normal Heart movement.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
Managing Patient Expectations About Acupuncture
Last year, I attended the Pacific Symposium in San Diego for the first time in six or seven years. It was the 25th anniversary of this event, and on one evening there was a panel discussion with the title; "What is Qi?."
Help Patients Achieve Optimal Vitamin D Levels
Much research has been done on vitamin D levels and their impact on health; optimal levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of developing numerous conditions.
Pulse Diagnosis: What We Know
I am still finding pearls of wisdom from the books and papers that I inherited from my pulse diagnosis mentor Jim Ramholz.
Blaming the Gluteus Medius, Overlooking the Deltoid
The gluteus medius (Gmed) is commonly written about, strengthened and blamed for many conditions, and rightfully so. After all, the Gmed plays a role in pelvic stability, hip motor control and lower-quarter dynamic movements.
AOMA Strengthens Leadership Team
AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine, a leading college of acupuncture & herbal medicine, announced the appointment of Donna LaPoint Hurta, MBA as the new VP of Finance & Operations this Fall.
The Wonders of Light Therapy: An Interview with Wes Burwell
I first met Wes Burwell in 2011 when he was teaching a class on light. Since then, every time I hear him speak, his understanding of the benefits, function and capacity of light has evolved.
Healing With TCM at San Quentin State Prison
For the prisoners at San Quentin State Prison, life-sentences are the reality of every day life. It is not often that prisoners get the opportunity to use alternative medicine to deal with common ailments they encounter behind bars such as, depression, anxiety and pain.
The Tao of Gender
If you think gender is as simple as having a new client check off the "male" or "female" box on your intake form, we hope this article will expand your understanding and thus the reach of your health care.
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
Jingei Diagnosis: An Effective and Powerful Diagnostic
I graduated from the Kotatama Institute under the direction of Drs. Masahilo and Katsuharu Nakazono in 1984. As a student, I was exposed to the practice of most of the various theories and modalites of Oriental Medicine.
Understanding and Identifying Pediatric Growth-Plate Fractures
In general, fractures in children heal well with little intervention as long as the alignment is good. Fractures involving the growth plate, however, are a different issue. In fact, growth-plate injuries are the primary reason for the subspecialty of pediatric orthopedics.
Transparency and Accountability: Q&A With the CCE
Every profession needs an organization dedicated to upholding the quality and integrity of its degree programs and educational institutions.
April, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 04
Raising the Quality of Massage Education
By Stan Dawson, Vice President, Board of Directors for the Alliance for Massage Therapy Education
When the leadership team that started the Alliance for Massage Therapy Education (AFMTE) discussed the mission and goals of the Alliance, the primary focus was on improving the quality of massage therapy education. The next logical question was: How? There are a few obvious possible answers.
Schools could be required to be nationally accredited. The education standards in the state massage regulations could be increased above the current levels, which tend to be at the 500 clock hour level. Curriculum standards could be implemented that make massage education more consistent from state to state. A Model Practice Act could be created that implements most, if not all, of the possible solutions to improving the quality of massage education. Teachers could be required to become more than content experts by learning more about how to teach. All of these possible solutions have been discussed for years.
National accreditation has been endorsed as an ultimate goal for the profession by the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), the Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals (ABMP), the Commission On Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA) and many leaders in the massage world. School owners have expressed resistance to the idea. Regulators tend not to back proposed legislation that has a significant opposition from a group that can make a legitimate claim that the new law would cause them potential harm, even to the point of putting small schools out of business. Consequently, even though it is a goal, accreditation is not widely regarded as a practical step to attempt in our current political atmosphere. That is a real pity.
The Entry Level Analysis Project (ELAP) could potentially lead to raising the education standards. It is a fairly long-term process, but a worthy one. COMTA, the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB) and the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards (FSMTB) have all done job task analyses (JTAs) that could help with this project. COMTA has a set of competencies that are required for their accredited schools. The Massage Therapy Body of Knowledge (MTBOK) could help, but version one was not widely accepted and the Alliance's version two has not received much exposure. Nevertheless, the MTBOK can contribute to the sense of what competencies should be required for entry level practice in massage therapy. The task force charged with ELAP is using all of these. Setting standards for entry level practice will lead to the need for curriculum standards and eventually rewriting the state massage laws to establish a new sense of our education standards.
A common criticism of massage education is the lack of consistency from school to school in terms of curriculum. Massage schools do not have a common set of competencies. COMTA's set of competencies is one that could be used, but is not being applied across the massage education sector. The MTBOK project was thought to potentially lead to a consensus that could be used to develop curriculum standards. The Alliance undertook the development of a second version of the MTBOK not just to solve the issues left from version one, but also to help in the development of a basis for curriculum standards. The stewards who oversaw the MTBOK did not see fit to follow through on making sure that version one was useful to the profession and fulfill its promise. The ELAP process may yet correct that short-sightedness.
Raising the quality of massage education is widely regarded as being crucial to the quality of massage that the public receives. Improving the quality of the teachers who teach massage is a common sense way to improve the quality of both massages received by the public and massage education in general. The Alliance surveyed the profession in 2010, and got widespread acceptance of the notion that raising teacher standards could make a significant difference and should be attempted. In late 2010, under the direction of the Alliance's professional standards committee chaired by Dr. Rebecca Birch Blessing, they outlined five phases for a Teacher Education Standards Project (TESP).
Those five phases are:
The entire TESP process will take 5 to 10 years, depending on the commitment of the massage profession to raising the level of massage education. The AFMTE will be working hard to see this process through with the belief that it will make a difference for the quality and the image of massage nationally.
In the spirit of fostering a culture that supports raising the standards of excellence in massage education, and highlighting the TESP Core Competencies for Massage Therapy Teacher, the AFMTE is pleased to announce the establishment of the Educators of the Year Award. In partnership with Biofreeze and BonVital, two educators (one teacher in a school setting and one continuing education provider) will be recognized for their excellence in massage education. The recipients will be chosen based on their experience, teacher training taken, and how well they meet the core competency standards.
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