resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
May, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 05
The Body's Core Line and Central Linkage
By Dale G. Alexander, LMT, MA, PhD
Consider the last ten clients on your treatment table. What were their somatic complaints? Now, imagine that you could loosen and lengthen the central linkage of the human body from occiput to sacrum.And, that the effect of this loosening and lengthening would assist and improve the therapeutic effect of almost any style of massage treatment.
Consider how this might simplify and potentiate the desired outcomes for these same ten clients? This is a premise I have been exploring and empirically testing for the past year and it seems to work exceptionally well for clients.
The Starting Point
Here are the anatomical ports of call I have been addressing: decompress the occiput upon the atlas, lengthen the esophagus, stretch each hemi-diaphragm and decompress the tissues around the heart/lung complex, stretch the ligament of treitz, mobilize the mesenteric root of the small intestine and finally, enhance the range of motion within the ankle/foot complex. These changes may be achieved using any manual therapy modality you have learned to effectively utilize.
There are numerous additional steps that could assist this proposed protocol to be even more effective yet, as described, it succinctly addresses the body's core line. It traces the linkage from the occiput to the sacral base to the ankles. It reduces the resistance to the heart's expansion. It eases the diaphragm's vertical and downward excursion and it revives and enhances the capacity of blood and lymph returning to the heart from all areas of the body below the diaphragm.
This protocol addresses the body's three major innate pumps for moving its fluids: the heart, the diaphragm and the ankle/foot complex. Mobilizing the heart/lung complex reduces compressive resistance to expansion of the heart muscle itself and stimulates the function of the root of the lung allowing more surface area for the production of new blood. Mobilizing the mesenteric root of the small intestine also increases its surface area, allowing for more absorption of nutrition. Increasing the mobility of dorsiflexion/plantarflexion of the ankle/foot facilitates the movement of blood and lymph back to the heart/lung complex. Osteopathy considers the ankle/foot complex as the body's 2nd heart.1 Together, these manipulations are proposed to reduce compression throughout the axial spine.
As a profession, I invite all bodywork educators to pool their collective intelligence and creativity toward developing other therapeutic protocols that facilitate the range and efficiency of these movements and functions. Also, consider how this proposal allows those in our profession to define what they do. Simply stated, "therapeutic massage stimulates your body's inherent capacity to move its fluids along their 60,000 mile journey from the heart and back again." Not a bad one-liner when speaking to a prospective client.
The philosophical shift here is to transform our therapeutic intent from manually enhancing the flow of venous and lymphatic fluids to specifically assisting the body to "re-calibrate its ongoing capacity" for self-perpetuating healthier function. The process becomes more analogous to tuning-up one's engine. The results continue with the client and contribute to their quality of life over a longer period of time. With the present emphasis on national health care, our ability to describe the benefits of what we do is what will make the difference in how we are regarded as effective health care practitioners. We know everyone benefits from bodywork and massage yet, we need simple ways of describing "how."
If any of these anatomical structures initially described are unfamiliar, please Google them, seek out your most recent continuing education teacher or ask around among your professional peers. Most of what has propelled me in this therapeutic direction was learned at the Upledger Institute from Drs. John Upledger, Richard MacDonald and Jean Pierre Barral. The Institute supports many excellent teachers.
Click here for more information about Dale G. Alexander, LMT, MA, PhD.
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