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The Short Leg Dilemma
When evaluating a new patient, it is common to note a relative shortening of one leg to the other. Some patients will even tell you they have one, and then pull out the store-bought heel lift they read about online.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 1
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.
More Chiropractors Required
An intriguing study published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine examines how "chiropractic care affects use of primary care physician (PCP) services."
Do Some Good and Grow Your Business with Cause Marketing
Cause marketing is truly one of the best ways that you can promote your services as a acupuncture professional. Cause marketing refers to a type of marketing where a business partners with a non-profit organization to help bring awareness to a charitable cause.
The Food Conversation: Nutrition and Your Practice
It's morning and your first patient rolls in with a triple espresso steaming in one hand and a frazzled, desperate look in her eye. "You gotta help me, doc, I am constipated unless I drink one of these, and I am exhausted and anxious all the time."
The Zen Art of "One Point"
We were always told in our Zen Shiatsu training (by Japanese and Japanese American instructors) that our ultimate aim was to to find that "One Point." To be so focused we could touch just one point to transform Qi throughout a client's body.
Fish Oil: A Key Component of Positive Clinical Outcomes
Patients seem to be presenting with more complex problems, and many are responding to care more slowly or have completely unexpected results. Why?
An Acupuncturist's View of Medicinal Marijuana
The use of cannabis for medical purposes is very controversial. Use as a panacea by physicians uninitiated to the proper application of herbal medicine, as well as an excuse for recreational use have greatly confused the issue.
Oriental Medicine on the World Stage
"Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." This simple, yet powerful statement was lived out time and time again by so many of the athletes from around the world during the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.
What's Chiropractic Research Worth to You?
The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), in celebration of its 20th anniversary, has announced it is spearheading a fundraising campaign to support chiropractic research.
A Chiropractor's Guide to Yoga
"Doctor, can I continue to do yoga while undergoing your care?" "Is it OK for me to go back to yoga while I'm getting my back treated?" "It is safe to start my yoga classes again after my neck pain improves?"
Getting a YES: An Effective Strategy for Overcoming Patient Objections
Patients make more excuses for declining care from an acupuncturist than perhaps any other type of doctor. Various reasons hold them back from making a commitment to care.
Healing Trauma: Cultivating Resilience and Presence Through Mindfulness, Part 2
In the last issue of Acupuncture Today, the first part of this article introduced the topic of trauma and resilience, and their relationship to the autonomic nervous system response and the concept of the spirit being grounded in the body, and suggested the importance of mindfulness as a tool for healing.
News in Brief
Call for Abstracts Announced - Parker Las Vegas 2016; Logan Adds Doctorate Degree; New Role for Dr. James Edwards.
Dorsiflexion Dysfunction: Evaluation & Manipulation Techniques
Almost every condition from the foot to the hip can be attributed to the inability to dorsiflex the ankle mortice and other joints that participate in dorsiflexion. Let's start by understanding normal versus abnormal dorsiflexion.
Harvard Health References Flawed AHA Position Paper
In its special health report, "Stroke: Diagnosing, Treating, and Recovering From a 'Brain Attack,'" Harvard Health Publications includes information from the American Heart Association's 2014 position statement on cervical manipulation and cervical dissection – a statement the American Chiropractic Association emphasized in a letter to Harvard Health mixes "scientific facts with half-truths."
Modernization of Chinese Medicine
Language – written, spoken, signed, or otherwise is learned as a means to express our individualized perceptions about the world around us. Language is designed to communicate our personal experiences.
Patient-Centered Care vs. Payer Restrictions: Your Ethical Obligation
Do you have an ethical obligation to evaluate your patients, make a diagnosis and provide evidence-based, patient-centered health care, irrelevant to the payer restrictions?
Nuts Reduce Risk of Heart Disease, Cancer and Other Health Problems
Several recent studies suggest regular consumption of nuts may provide a significant degree of protection against certain types of cancer, heart disease, possibly type 2 diabetes and some neurodegenerative diseases.
Change Lives by Supporting Chiropractic Research: Are You In?
The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), in celebration of its 20th anniversary, has announced it is spearheading a fund-raising campaign to support chiropractic research.
Practicing with Authenticity
To extrapolate from the above quote, patients love healthcare providers they can trust. One way to earn the trust of your patients is by practicing with authenticity. What does that mean, exactly?
Improving Communication Between AOM and Biomedical Providers
How comfortable do you feel talking to Western medical providers? If you are like me, you may not feel as comfortable as you would like. Some of my interactions with MD's haven't been the fruitful steps toward integrative medicine for which I had hoped.
Surprising Reasons for Orthotic Efficacy
Clinical outcome studies show orthotics are effective in the management of a wide range of injuries, including plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis and patellofemoral pain syndrome.
Help: A Need at Every Level
One of the great gifts of training in acupuncture is the ability to take good care of oneself. I recently had a bout of frozen shoulder — an inflammatory syndrome which can be debilitatingly painful and take years to resolve.
The New Age of Communication
In the age of technology, everyone, including the patient, is seeking faster, easier ways to communicate. With a wealth of social media, blogs, websites and videos, we are constantly barraged with information – to the point of overload.
Fertility and Poly-Unsaturated Fatty Acids
Starting or expanding one's family is a major milestone. It's something that more and more people seek out health care advice and support for.
June, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 06
Building the Ultimate Massage Room
By Terry Russell
We as massage therapists dream of having our own treatment room, especially when we are schlepping our table across town to an appointment. Furnishing our own rooms with the best of the best is a closely held dream and for many, making this dream a reality comes later in our careers.What to do with that empty nest bedroom? That unfurnished bonus room? That really good deal advertised at the local market for "space available."
When making a list of the items found in your dream massage room, it's always good to include everything you can think of to enhance your practice, as well as everything that will make your life easy. From there, prioritize the items on the list from, "I desperately need," to "I desperately want." Be honest here as there is no room for greediness in your new room.
Equipment and Furniture
Let's take a look at equipment and furniture used in treatment rooms. Keep in mind, at this point these are in no particular order. Starting with the obvious, the table needs to be considered. Is your current table in good shape? Does it squeak, creak, crack or moan? Is it still rugged or do you find it a little wobbly at times? Are the legs still attractive or do they have the used look with scratches and dents? These are the important things. The things your clients see, feel and hear. The things your clients will remember and share with their friends. If your current table is still good, with a little cover make over you can make it look clinic/spa ready.
If your current table has seen better days, then it is definitely time to consider a new purchase. Stationary tables make a great statement on your behalf and do not have to be expensive. Manual adjusting stationary tables are quite affordable and come with many options to fit nearly any budget. This is a capital expense so keep your receipts, record the day it goes in service and share this information with your tax accountant. While adding an electric adjusting option will increase your cost, there are several options to consider while making sure you add the best option for your budget. There are basically three types of stationary tables:
To decide on the proper table take a hard look at your modalities and see what options would better fit your style. Also, consider not only your current clientele, but the future clients and their needs. A little planning ahead can help maximize your new table.
In addition to the table, a rolling stool works nicely in a stationary room. Again, a few options come to play. Some come with a back, without a back or a removable back. Some manufacturer's give you height options as well. The shorter range stools work better in a pedicure environment, while the taller, more standard range performs better for massage and esthetics. Also available for your comfort choice are round bottoms, square bottoms and saddle seats.
Now, on to the fun stuff. The things that before your stationary room were only accessories and that as a mobile therapist you learn to learn without. Stone warmers are a great addition. The six quart will work, but the 18 quart is multi-talented. It can double as a towel warmer if you don't have one and also heat your oils and lotions. A good alternative to stone warmers are the self-heating stones. A pair of these will stay warm allowing you to perform a full massage with just two stones. The beautiful way they charge may intrigue your client into upgrading to a stone massage. These also work great when you only need a stone or two for deep tissue work.
If the budget allows, a towel warmer is an excellent addition to any room and any modality. Towel warmers come with several options and sizes. Basic options include a side open door (like a refrigerator) or a pull down door (like your stove); some have a UV Sterilizer light and a choice of a single or double wire rack option. Towel warmers also come in colors with the most popular being white, chocolate or stainless. Warm towels are a great ending touch for Swedish and a recovery touch in deep tissue.
Oils and Lotions
Now that we have things heating up in the treatment room, don't forget your oils and lotions. There is an option to fit your style by choosing between single bottles, double, triple or quad holder. Also, the unit comes in white, gel colors and stainless. This is a good investment to always be able to treat your client to warm lubricants.
Paraffin warmers allow a nice add-on to earn you extra money and do not take up much space in a treatment room. Smooth the rough hands and heels of your clients, as well as ease joint tension with warm paraffin. This purchase can also go for self-care to ease your over worked hands and to ensure you always have soft hands to work on your clients. Dual benefits to your clients and yourself make this a product to put on the "must-have" list.
Now that you are stationary, why not take advantage of the many bolster sizes and shapes that are available. No longer do you have to make one size fit all. A few different sizes and shapes can make your massage flow smoother and bring even more comfort to your client. Options include, full round, half round, semi round, fluffy and ladies comfort to name a few.
With all the new equipment in the room, now comes the daunting task of storing them neatly while keeping access to them. A trolley or cart is a good supplement to any room. The options are vast with trolleys. The frames are either a lightweight poly, metal or wood. It can come as simple as two shelves and as complex as three shelves, a drawer and a power surge strip. Depending on your needs and space, you can get a trolley that will store your equipment while giving you easy access with a professional touch.
While you are creating the ultimate room for your comfort and ease, don't slight your customer. Be sure to include a hook and clothes hanger for their clothes/robe. A chair is always a nice touch in case they need to sit down while removing their shoes. Consider adding a small tray or bowl to hold their rings, watches, bracelets and necklaces. If room permits, a small step stool is always handy for the shorter or older clientele to help on and off the table.
This is just the tip of the iceberg for your new room. As you settle in the new space, more things will come to mind. The second list could include the expansion phase.
For this initial phase, it's time to prioritize what we have so far. It goes without saying the table comes first. If your table is in good shape then on to the items for the rest of the room. I would suggest the first half of the list be devoted to you and your client's needs and the second half devoted to your wants. At this phase, list everything you can think of. Prioritizing is a personal thing and there is no clear cut solution on what should go where. After you have prioritized the list, set it aside for a day or two, then go back and see if the order you have still makes sense.
Once you have a prioritized list, time to source your potential purchases. Always check with more than one company. Our industry has the luxury of having several multi-line distributors and manufacturers that can offer you competitive quotes. Don't be afraid to ask for a discount. While discounts are not always available, sometimes a company can offer savings, especially on larger orders. Freight and shipping cost are not easily discounted, but always ask for options, especially when talking stationary tables that ship by tractor and trailer. Most equipment quotes are guaranteed for at least thirty days, plenty of time for you to research your buying options. Most importantly, get your quote in writing. This will make it easy for you to compare cost and lead times.
So whether moving into that permanent room for the first time, expanding to a second room or still dreaming of the day you get your own treatment room, dream big, start a list, prioritize and work to make that dream come true.
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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