resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Let's Speak With One Voice in 2015
For the longest time, the chiropractic profession has attempted to achieve some form of unity. On a political level, this was characterized by an ultimately unsuccessful two-year merger effort between ACA and ICA leadership from 1986-1988.
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?
News in Brief
An Encouraging Sign at Palmer; NBCE Announces Retirement of Longtime Director of Testing.
Acupuncture and Homeopathy: Bioenergetic Brothers
Acupuncture and homeopathy share an important healing principle: bioenergetics. "Bio" means "life," so bioenergetics is literally "life energy."
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.
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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