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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.
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.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
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.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
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.
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.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
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.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
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.
Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
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.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
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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