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Syncretism: Acupuncture and Public Health in Cuba
"Syncretism" is defined as a union of diverse tenets or practices. On a recent trip to Cuba designed to demonstrate the integration of Traditional Medicine and biomedicine, our group witnessed this union firsthand.
One Size Does Not Fit All: Exercise and Nutrition According to Your Yin/Yang Body Type
There are countless new exercise and nutrition plans out there, emphasizing the latest ground-breaking research and claiming to revolutionize the way we view health.
Footsteps of the Sages: An Apprenticeship with Dr. Kezhan Zhang
When I met Dr. Kezhen Zhang in May 2013, I was his translator and the integrity, creativity, and passion he demonstrated as a practitioner and advocate of the medicine convinced me to travel to Beijing to study with him.
Making Sense of an Increasingly Obvious Conclusion
Where's U.S. health care heading? Like it or not, the list of telltale signs is growing to a point that stands out to even the most myopic observer. Consider this list of facts as you look into the future of health care in the United States:
Which Way is the Energy Going? Are You Burning Yourself Out?
One of the simple methods that I use to define Yin/Yang theory to patients is to ask the question, "Which way is your energy going?"
Your Billing Questions Answered
I hear a lot of the following questions: I am afraid I may doing something illegal. I have heard I cannot have different fees for the same service.
Mechanism: Experimental Approaches to Understanding Acupuncture, Part 1
The clinical benefits of acupuncture are difficult to ignore, but also can be difficult to explain to a Western audience. For nearly 50 years, relentlessly inquisitive scientists and physicians have been working toward a conceptual model to explain acupuncture.
Diagnose Sprain Injuries in MVA Cases With Dynamic X-Rays (Pt. 1)
Am I the only person to notice hospitals are doing a seemingly insufficient job lately in their initial radiological workup of motor vehicle accident (MVA) victims?
Chinese Herbs and Pulmonary Fibrosis: A Case Study
"Mary M."* recently celebrated her 90th birthday. Even the former sheriff dropped by to kiss the hand of this diminutive retired teacher, to honor the years she interpreted for him during interviews with Latinas and Latinos.
Born to Energize the Human Spirit: Recollections of Sig Miller
Sig Miller, longtime executive director of the Association of New Jersey Chiropractors (ANJC), passed away on Sept. 17 after a long battle with cancer.
F4CP Making a High-Impact Impression
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has released details of its 2016 strategy, certain elements of which are already in play. The strategy includes ads, posters and other resources available to all F4CP members.
It's Time to Review
It is amazing to see the changes that are occurring in the acupuncture profession. Let's look at some of the news and events that have contributed to this growth and awareness.
Designing a Fitness Plan (Part 1)
It doesn't matter if you come to my practice for pain relief, weight loss, healthy aging or something else. The formula I talk about for each patient's fitness strategy is pretty much the same.
Tailor-Made Knee Pain: The Sartorius Muscle
A patient was referred to my office after receiving treatment from various providers with no results. The patient was training for the Olympics as a marathon runner and was unable to run or walk without severe medial knee pain.
Dietary Fat and Prostate Cancer: An Important Update
K.M. Di Sebastiano and M. Mourtzakis published a review paper examining the role of dietary fat on prostate cancer development and progression late last year that does a stellar job of summarizing the available data on fat and prostate cancer.
The Modern Application of Ancient Mei Rong
Chinese Medical Cosmetology (Mei Rong) has a well-documented and venerated history dating back to the Qin (221-206 BC) Dynasty.
Omega-3 Fish Oil: An Underappreciated Element of Men's Health
As a clinician with many male patients -- and as a man myself -- I am all too aware of the fact that we like to convince ourselves that we are doing great, when that may be the farthest thing from the truth.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 2
Acupuncture's cultural and historical roots go back to the emergence of Chinese civilization. For more than 2,000 years, acupuncture needling has been continuously practiced on the largest population in the world.
North Carolina Acupuncture Board Files Dry Needling Lawsuit
In early September, the NCALB filed a complaint against the North Carolina Board of Physical Therapy Examiners over the issue of dry needling, a form of acupuncture that uses solid needles to puncture the skin and muscle tissue to relieve pain.
The Concussion-Subluxation Complex
In the Aug. 1, 2014 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic, I reviewed some of the literature demonstrating the role of the chiropractic adjustment in post-concussive care.
Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine in the West
We know acupuncture and Oriental medicine as the indigenous medicine of East Asia; in particular China, Korea and Japan are the countries of origin of this wonderful healing system.
Targeting the Bad Apples in the Bunch
While everyone was focused on the conversion to ICD-10, the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services released a new report on chiropractic titled "CMS Should Use Targeted Tactics to Curb Questionable and Inappropriate Payments for Chiropractic Services."
Too Many to Remember: Tips to Revive Your Ortho / Neuro Test Skills
When I was at Palmer in the mid-1980s, we were given a set of notes in one of our diagnostic courses. The notes covered approximately 70 orthopedic and neurological tests for various regions of the body.
May, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 05
Using Transactional Analysis to Speak "Client"
By Gerry Pyves
One of the most valuable things I learned when I trained as a Transactional Analysis Psychotherapist was to learn the difference between my "self" and the "other." This is particularly important in a therapy like massage which offers so many opportunities to "merge" with our clients.
By "merge" what I mean is to confuse what I am experiencing and thinking with what the client actually experiences. This sounds a bit obvious, doesn't it? However, one of the most common mistakes I witness in my training of massage therapists is precisely this problem. Many therapists pride themselves on their "sensitivity" and their "psychic" abilities, even. They simply love to prove their abilities by telling clients exactly what they notice about them and what their "energy" is doing.
Most of this is simply projection. We feel uplifted so we say to the client, "I notice how uplifted you are." In the power relationship of massage, the client is bound to agree. Occasionally, a client with a strong ego will simply walk out and not return as a result of such insulting and manipulative behaviour.
We must ensure it is the client's own experience they are describing in their own words. To do this, I invite the client to spend a few minutes lying on the table at the end of the treatment. This is so they have time to integrate the effect of the massage. Sometimes this is the most powerful therapeutic time of the treatment. Clients often report that they "let go" even more than during the bodywork itself. I leave the room so they really are in their own space for this phase.
The second part of this "integration phase" is when the client is dressed. Here, I still avoid chit chat and deflect the inevitable, "what did you notice?" game by simply asking the client to: "Walk around the table and notice how your body wants to walk after this treatment. Tell me anything you notice that feels different from this before you got on the table - if anything."
What is remarkable is that clients never say "Wow, I feel so myofascia-ed!" or "I feel like my iliopsoas is now so much longer!" Only massage therapists and professional bodyworkers talk such language. If clients really do speak this way, then they have been educated. What clients actually come out with, without such professional brain washing is, well, absolutely anything!
Learning From Our Clients
That is what makes it so exciting to actually listen to clients - I never know what will actually come out of their mouths. One client may walk like a zombie carrying lead weights on his feet and say, "I feel so light and free." They could not look less free or light if they tried. But who am I to say what my client actually feels or experiences internally? What is certain is this: everything I learned about the power of touch and massage came from the mouths of my clients. None of it can be found in the massage text books which, of necessity, only speak "bodywork." Yet, to really understand the immense power of massage, we really need to turn each client we massage into our teacher, by truly listening to their words.
Many therapists I know actually give a non-stop verbal commentary on what muscle is being released as they work. Now this is beyond the scope of practice, because it is hypnotherapy. Telling another human being what is happening in their body while they are in a semi-relaxed state and giving them suggestions is hypnotherapy. It is not ethical, in my opinion.
Only one person truly knows what the client is feeling in the treatment room, and it isn't the massage therapist. If you want to be a psychic, go get a velvet tent and a crystal ball. Otherwise let your clients have the space to find their own words for what they are feeling. When my clients "walk" after the treatment and are integrating their new body structure through the walk, I must bite my tongue and let them explore this new state of being.
What if they say, "nope, don't feel any different?" If there is not a convenient 8th floor window to throw yourself out of, you might just stay around and learn something. These "failures" are sometimes the most powerful teachings of them all.
You will not learn about massage from training courses. You will only learn about it from actual clients. if you bother to really listen to them and really want to know about them. All about them, not just their "physical" state. Know about them as human beings. You are not a bodyworker. The only place to find bodies without energy, emotion, mind and spirit is in the morgue or in bodywork text books. What you are, is a "human being worker."
The Best Marketing Tool
One of the great advantages of giving the client the chance to define their own reality in their own words, is how your clients walk out of your treatment room extremely clear about the value of coming for treatments with you. When they meet their friend for coffee after the treatment and they ask, "what have you been doing?" Your client replies, "I have just had a massage treatment and I feel six inches taller, so much lighter and ready to take on the world."
What just happened here? You just got yourself a new referral is what happened. Just from learning how to speak "client."
Gerry Pyves lives in West Yorkshire, in the United Kingdom. He holds an MA from Oxford University and qualified as a massage therapist in 1984. He became a UKCP registered Transactional Analysis psychotherapist in 1999. He is the founder and creator of NO HANDS® Massage. He is currently looking for instructors to teach NO HANDS® in the U.S. For more information, visit www.nohandsmassage.com.
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