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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.
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.
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?
News in Brief
Call for Abstracts Announced - Parker Las Vegas 2016; Logan Adds Doctorate Degree; New Role for Dr. James Edwards.
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.
Practice Policy (Gone Bad): The Sign
Every once in a while, you see something and think to yourself, That's a really bad idea. Case in point: I went to see my medical doctor the other day. Just after being "roomed," as they say, the nurse checked my vital signs. Then she left.
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."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?"
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.
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?
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?
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 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.
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.
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.
August, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 08
Understanding the Beautiful Choreography of Massage
By Caron Lerner
Given the choice, I would pick my own music when giving a massage. Now, I find myself working at a specific location where I don't have a say in the matter. The music that I work with is very calming, pleasant and wonderful.
Through the years I have worked with smooth jazz, head banger hard rock, sound effects such as waterfalls, running water (nowadays not my favorite, running water always makes me run to the bathroom), tribal drums and a host of others.
I have always said that when I give a massage I should get as much benefit out of giving the massage as the client on the table getting the massage. With the proper music there is a certain ebb and flow in the bodies movement making the treatment more of a dance than a clinical event. The smooth flowing long strokes, as well as the intense critical trigger point work all have a place in the surrounding music that accompanies a massage treatment.
As I listen to the music, my body begins to move in conjunction with the rhythm. It has the same effect as standing while holding a baby. There is a natural rocking/swaying movement taking place as the session continues. Even as the music changes from song to song, it's an easy adjustment to follow the rhythmical changes as they occur. To stoically stand from place to place as you work on your client will lead to poor postural habits, fatigue, pain and discomfort.
In my education, included in my curriculum was Tai Chi Chuan. It took me a few years to see the true benefits of using the long flowing movements, lowering my center of gravity and relaxing as I move through the treatment. Not only do I find a true connection with my client's energy, I feel that they can feel my energy as the rhythm flows through my touch.
The movements are slow and yet precise. I can deepen my breathing allowing for relaxation throughout the entire massage. This allows me to focus and regenerate during the massage making the treatment less fatiguing, allowing for greater energy to be dispersed.
After years of working in my own private practice, my husband and I relocated from Long Island to Charlotte, North Carolina. My best option for continuing my passion in massage was to join the ranks of therapists working in store front franchised massage businesses while building up a private clientele. This was quite an education. I used to design my own music and burn my own discs.
I went through a Yanni phase, classical music phase, melodic piano, guitar, folk and classic rock. My clients began to request a certain genre and my library grew. The best technological advancement came with Sirius Satellite Radio. I would go to my clients homes and tune into the meditation station or other stations conducive to massage. I am partial to piano or guitar music. Slow melodies in minor keys give the tempo of the massage a very relaxing, sedative almost tranquilizing effect. As I listen to the rhythm and melody of the music, my massage begins to evolve into a symphony and dance of flowing energy. Combining music with the movements of Tai Chi has allowed me to continue my massage for more than 20 years.
There is a certain meditative feeling allowing me to close my eyes and feel deeply into my client's muscles. I let my hands feel what needs to be felt. I let the music permeate the atmosphere allowing for the quintessential experience to begin. Each and every massage is a new adventure, a new exploration into a healing process. I take the journey with my client and together we work through a maze of stress, tension and medical issues.
In the medical field, there are few practitioners that have the privilege of an actual hands on experience with their clients from beginning to end. As massage therapists, we all but guarantee that the person walking into our room will feel better walking out of our room. Through a blend of ambiance, music, knowledge of our craft and empathy, we have the ability to significantly alter a person's day. This is a very satisfying experience. A challenge I accept every day.
Caron Lerner graduated from New York College of Health Professions 1993 and has been actively practicing massage therapy for more than 24 years. She is a licensed massage therapist in North Carolina and New York. Email her at:
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