resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Universal Design: Principles & Practice
In many respects, universal design serves as the core of ergonomics. It's also a good tool to use when designing a return-to-work program for injured and/or ill patients. Let's take a closer look at universal design and why it should matter to you and your patients.
An Unexpected Diagnosis: The Result of Lacking Communication
A couple years ago I had a case that showed me the importance of open communication between health practitioners. We need to show up with less fear, and let go of our judgments so we can do better for the patient.
Bill With Confidence: Learn What to Collect
Q: I am trying to understand what I may collect from my patient when there is insurance. Do I have to accept the amount allowed by the plan or may I collect up to my billed amount? Please note, I am not a member of any insurance plan.
Creating Good Business Buzz
What do patients really think about working with you? Rarely do you hear the whole truth. Those who improve may be candid in their gratitude.
A Major Role in Back Pain: The Multifidus
Back pain affects roughly 80 percent of the population at one time or another and is one of the leading causes of doctor visits.
Is It Time to Rethink Mental Illness? (Pt. 1)
Invariably, patients will ask their chiropractor about depression or various mental illnesses. Some practitioners will reflexively offer a cervical adjustment, suggest St. John's wort or contemplate a referral to a specialist.
Why I Quit Doing House Calls
My father was a chiropractor who did house calls, so when I became a DC, I figured doing house calls was part of the job. My March article recalled my experience as a small boy, accompanying my dad while he went to patients' homes to treat them.
Balancing Spring Challenges
As the winter months come to a close and warmer spring weather appears, patients may begin to present with new challenging pattern presentations.
Eczema & Acupuncture: A Sound Solution (Part 1)
Eczema affects approximately 3.5 percent of the global population and is one of the most common skin complaints seen by dermatologists.
Clearing Blocks: A Way to Improve Cosmetic Acupuncture
As a Five Element acupuncturist who teaches facial acupuncture classes nationally, I was surprised to learn that one of the basic principles I was taught in school is unfamiliar to most acupuncturists.
Taking the Chiropractic Message to the Press
"There is no better place on earth to have a news event," the National Press Club boasts, and it's easy to understand why: Every year, the 108-year-old Washington, D.C.-based organization hosts countless press conferences on the hottest topics impacting America and often the world.
Give Yourself the Digital Advantage
When you see this article in the print version of this issue and swear you read it already, don't be alarmed: you probably did. That's because by that time, the May issue will have been available online in digital format for three weeks.
Women's Hormones: A Western & Eastern Perspective
Sometimes it may seem that you require a degree in medicine to understand hormones and how they function.
News in Brief
ACA Adopts New Governance Model; ACA 2017 Awards; CCA Helps Calif. DCs "Share the Love"; $1 Million to Help Advance the Profession; D'Youville Raises the Bar on Anatomy Education; ErRatum.
The Visual Error Scoring System: A Concussion Tool
Postural stability and oculomotor function are the most easily recognized physical indicators of neurologic motor dysfunction associated with concussions.
An Integrated Approach to Chronic Pain
Findings from a unique Medicaid pilot project in Rhode Island involving high-use Medicaid recipients from two health plans were recently presented to the state's Department of Health, demonstrating stellar outcomes with regard to medication use, ER visits, health care costs and patient satisfaction.
A Daily Strategy for Heavy-Metal Detox
In modern society, we are constantly exposed to heavy metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. These heavy metals have no essential biochemical roles in our body, and conversely, can cause us a great deal of harm if they build up to toxic levels.
Raditation & Your Smartphone: Is it Worth the Risk?
If radial arteries could talk (and in my experience they can to some extent), they would say, "Step away from the smartphone." At least that is the message I am receiving loud and clear as I feel the pulses of many patients.
New Relationships, Old Trauma: AOM & Other Healing Strategies
Being in love is one the most beautiful and enjoyable experiences. Most of us are willing to pay almost any price to have that experience, and still often find it elusive or fleeting. Navigating the ups and downs of loving relationships are often challenging — even for the most psychologically balanced among us.
February, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 02
A Successful Man Working in a Woman's World
By Terry Russell
It's a woman's world - verbiage heard through the ages. History resonates with women's issues like voting rights to equal pay. Media keeps women in the forefront with working women frying the bacon to anchoring world news. It is no wonder the mindset of strong women has filtered into the massage industry.
I remember sitting in massage school class being so excited to start my new career later in life. Massage therapy was going to be my new profession. It had become my new passion. I am so thankful that my school back in North Carolina did not bring up the fact I was not a woman. A fact I never really gave any thought to except to fill out a questionnaire or go to the rest room.
Graduation came, national certification passed, state license granted. Nothing was going to stop me now, or was it? My first real massage job was at a high end spa. Awesome, I thought. I would be working on educated, successful people who realized the importance of touch. Period. End of discussion. Not a specific gender touch, but just touch in its most sincere and healing intentions.
It was during orientation that it was brought to my attention that since I am male, I was automatically at a disadvantage. What? I have trained and embraced neuromuscular massage. I was put here to ease pain and educate those in chronic pain. While not totally in error, I was clearly far from the truth of my reason for existence. My client education was to be in the form of explaining to the public that a guy's touch has all of the same benefits that a woman's touch will have.
I remember vividly one night the spa was about to close and a client had just flown in. He was in desperate need of bodywork to prepare him for a seminar he was presenting the next day. He was a doctor so I thought there would be no problem with me being male. After all, I was the only one that agreed to work over. He met me with great resistance, demanding a female therapist. When he learned the next female appointment was the next morning, he opted to keep his appointment with me. By the end of the massage, he not only thanked me but apologized for his behavior earlier. He became a regular client of mine and would only schedule when I was available.
I continued to be one of the most booked therapists in the spa. Intent is everything, even if it is making the world aware that gender is not relative in touch. I firmly believe we are only limited by ourselves. If you see yourself less than anything other than being an awesome therapist, both your current clients and your potential clients will see you as less as well.
I went on to create a successful private practice by marketing my strong points and ignoring my manhood. Often, I was faced with questions that before I entered this field I would have thought of as trite. Early in my career, I learned most of these potential clients only wanted me to be real with them. They were going to be vulnerable on a massage table and needed reassurance the person in the room understood their concerns. It really was that simple.
When greeting new clients for the first time, I would take the time to explain how their session would work. I would ask them where they would like additional time spent. I would explain where and why I would work certain areas. The key I found was that I always finished my explanations by asking them point blank – do you have any questions or concerns? If they were apprehensive, I just opened the door for dialogue so they would not have to start an awkward conversation.
Many times, I was met with "well, this is the first time I have had a man work on me." Perfect. This was my cue to take the conversation from a zen-like tone to a more medical office tone. To steer the conversation into more of what I hope to offer the session and less about gender. I wanted to create a relaxed atmosphere so that by the time they were on the table, they were a little more at ease and by the need of the session they were glad they opted for a male therapist.
As my career has shifted and I have been in the multi-line distributor arena for several years, I have had to opportunity to meet many therapists, students and educators in the massage industry. I am amazed at how we, as an industry, can set limitations on our potential male therapists. I have had many conversations with male students at trade shows who show concern for their future because they heard in class that it's hard for guys to make it in the industry. Really? Don't you think it's hard on all therapists when starting out? We all had to sharpen our skills, build our tool box from scratch and build a clientele based on skill and talent. Nowhere in the last sentence can you insert the word male to make it harder. Face it, hard is hard. No matter where you live, what gender you are or the industry you are entering it's tough to start a new career. Tough is hard but not impossible or impractical. What is impractical is telling a very talented therapist, "you will have it harder because you're a guy."
This is for the guys. As you plan your future, don't limit yourself by thinking this is strictly a woman's world. You're strong. You're in an industry where skills and knowledge will set you apart. Always strive to add to your tool box. Look for continuing education that will improve your practice and not just quick and easy. You can make it guys, even when someone thinks this is a woman's world. Just a quick note to the massage educators - empower your male therapists instead of discouraging them. The massage industry is no longer a woman's world. A male therapist can make it whether looking to enter into the areas of spa, wellness, rehabilitation or medical. Good luck guys – you are in an awesome industry.
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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