Cyber Threat Checklist: Defend Your Business With These 10 Steps
Living in an internet connected society brings many conveniences and benefits. The power of the internet to connect us with customers, store data, and find information has opened the door for many small business owners to grow and flourish.
Diagnosing & Treating Aggressive Energy
Recently, there has been an article, and subsequent discussion, about the subject of Aggressive Energy (AKA "AE"), including ways to detect its presence and an alternative method of treating it.
TCM Codes for the World
I just received an email concerning the ICD-TM11 codes. The World Health Organization (WHO) will be presenting the new ICD-11 codes to World Health Assembly very soon.
It's Time for a Functional Approach to Chronic Illness
It seems one of the more modern buzzwords is chronic, referring to diseases – that is to say, "ongoing and incurable." However, we can take a different perspective and recognize that, although the body may have been traumatized and injured, healing should always be viewed in the realm of possibility.
Missed Causes of LBP: It's the Syndrome, Not the Subluxation
When I read the chart notes of other chiropractors, I am usually disappointed. They list what vertebrae are fixated or misaligned. They may describe the involved fascia and muscles.
Bastyr University: On the Front Lines of the Pain Epidemic
At University of Washington's Harborview Medical Center, the Seattle region's only Level I Trauma and Burn Center, the demands for in-patient care are dramatically different from a private clinic environment.
Catch the Workplace Wellness Wave
Do you offer workplace wellness services to local businesses? If not, you might want to consider this lucrative channel for expanding your practice. Workplace wellness programs and wellness-related benefits have grown in popularity over the past several decades.
News in Brief
Parker University Launches New Open-Access Research Journal for Chiropractic; Western States, Cleveland-KC Name New Deans of Chiropractic Colleges; Sherman College Goes Tobacco-Free; Life University Wins 11 Awards.
Spring Allergies & The Spleen: Looking at Pattern Differentiation
As the season of Spring fades away and we shift into the warm summer months, many patients suffer from chronic allergies. This is by far one of the most common issues I see in the clinic as well as often mistreated and misdiagnosed.
Practice Pearls: There's More to ROM Than Meets the Eye
As part of my neuromusculoskeletal examination, I perform range-of-motion (ROM) evaluations. I can "eyeball" the range and measure, I can use a goniometer and measure, I can use my phone app and measure, or I can use various other instruments to help determine degrees of motion.
Multi-Dimensional Acupuncture: 3D, 4D & 5D
Maggie is an intuitive healer and workshop leader who I met on a recent hike. While we were talking she told me how she had to take it easy because of her knees. She said that her doctor told her that she has the early signs of arthritis.
Chiropractic's Next Frontier: Adjusting the Microbiome
Restoring a healthy microbiome to help treat disease may be the next frontier in chiropractic offices around the country.
Old Trend, New Risks: Heavy Weight Training
With more opportunities to exercise than ever, a greater selection of exercise options, and the subsequent opinions supporting and challenging their merits, it's easy to be confused as to which approach is best.
Better With Chiropractic
While chiropractic care is receiving high levels of exposure these days, most pain patients who consult with a health provider still do so with their primary-care MD. And of course, that means in most cases, they're receiving standard medical care, not chiropractic.
Paving the Way to Integrative Health & Wellness
Jared Polis (D-Colorado) and Mike Coffman (R-Colorado) launched the integrative health and wellness (IHW) caucus in October, 2018.
Regenerative Medicine: How to Do It by the Books
The "lay of the land" for regenerative therapies, including but certainly not limited to adult stem-cell treatments, seems to change almost daily.
A Novel Way to Prevent Elderly Falls: Toe Strength
In any given year, nearly 40 percent of senior citizens ages 70 and older will fall at least once. Each fall significantly increases the risk of not only sprains, strains and contusions, but also fractures.
Is Primary Spine Care the Answer for Chiropractic?
Recently, we sat down with Mark Studin, DC, FASBE(C), DAAPM, DAAMLP, to discuss the state of chiropractic and why primary spine care may hold the key to chiropractic's future. Read what he had to share in this exclusive interview.
Official NCCAOM Practice Tests
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) is excited to announce the launch of the new NCCAOM Exam Preparation Center.
The Acupuncturist and the Opioid Crisis: Conquering Pain & Addiction in the U.S.
The current opioid epidemic dominates the discussion among national health leaders, recovery advocates and families nationwide. Opioids include heroin as well as prescription pain relievers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, fentanyl, and others.
Transforming Exam Delivery
The NBCE Board of Directors has never wavered on its promise to deliver an excellent, on-campus computerized testing experience to students. Likewise, there has never been a compromise to the delivery of fair, valid and legally defensible exams.
State by State: Chiropractic Leads Changes in Health Care
Monumental legislative bills in support of the chiropractic profession were passed recently in Washington, West Virginia and Oregon. Here is a review of this important legislation, state by state...
NBCE to Reinstitute Computer-Based Exams
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) has announced it will reinstate computer-based testing in January 2019 courtesy of a partnership with testing and assessment solutions provider Prometric.
New Opportunities for DCs
For decades, the model chiropractic practice has been the single-doctor practice. Recent surveys have found that approximately two-thirds of U.S. doctors of chiropractic still practice this way, with another 20 percent practicing in multiple-chiropractor practices.
Prompting Memory: How to Stimulate Cognition
Recently I gave a talk titled, The Art of Memoir – Tapping the Past to Sharpen the Present at a senior lunch event in Austin, Texas.
First World Spine Care Graduate: Hildah Molate
Hildah Molate, the first World Spine Care (WSC) scholarship student, graduated from Palmer College of Chiropractic earlier this year and is now working at the WSC community spine clinic in Shoshong, Botswana.
Acupuncture's Standard of Care
Both a concern and critique of acupuncture, frequently espoused by the bio-medical community is, "there is no standard of care in acupuncture." The following is why I believe this statement is disingenuous at best.
Reducing Allostatic Load & Stress Through Heightened Awareness
Your contemporary mental health and psychotherapy colleagues may often approach the treatment of allostatic load as a mental health condition and use prescription psycho-pharmaceutical medicine to affect general and specific central nervous system (CNS) pathways and brain neuro-chemistry medicine to alleviate the associated symptoms.
Dropping Insurance: 4 Steps
My office manager just got off the phone with the secretary of a long-standing patient. I have treated this woman and 10 members of her family for more than a decade. She has, as have all of my patients, paid my fee at the time of service since I dropped insurance in 1997.
February, 2009, Vol. 09, Issue 02
The Art of Massage With Bamboo
By Ernesto Ortiz, LMT, CST
I have been teaching my own modality of hot stone massage for 10 years. This popular type of massage is offered by many self-employed therapists as well as in various spas. But what I am feeling is that we may be turning from the age of stone to the gentler, more flexible medium of bamboo.
In this era of computers, cell phones and fast food, we are in need of something simpler and more authentic. People are learning that the fast pace we keep only produces stress, and are looking for ways to eliminate it. Just look around. Eastern philosophies have arrived in the West. Yoga studios and meditation classes abound in every city. Organic diets, natural medicine, essential oils, and more teas have become the norm for millions of us.
Bamboo fits well into this new paradigm.
Bamboo is one of the most multifaceted plants on our planet. It has earned its reputation from its noble and soft appearance as well as its perseverance under harsh conditions. In the Orient, bamboo symbolizes strength, fertility, youth, prosperity and peace.
I have had the great opportunity to travel around the world. In China, Indonesia, Thailand and Japan, I have seen incredible structures made with bamboo. Festivals and rituals have, in many cases, used bamboo as the must essential element in the creation of sacred spaces. Many families grow a bamboo forest around their temples as a secure barrier against evil spirits. People know that bamboo sings with the wind bringing an atmosphere of peace and serenity.
Bamboo is certainly one of the most versatile plants. It has spiritual, mythological and many practical applications. We can eat it (bamboo shoots). We can build aqueducts, furniture, homes, mats and floors. We can create musical instruments, tools and utensils (flutes, marimbas, baskets, needles, fishing nets and hooks are just a few examples). We can also use its fiber for the production of paper and textiles. Bamboo has been used for thousands of years as an herbal remedy in Chinese medicine. In Hawaii and the South Pacific islands, a traditional knife for cutting the umbilical cord of a newborn was fashioned from bamboo since they believe that metal can cause harm to the newborn.
Bamboo has a unique energy all of its own, one that has a special magnetism; this plant emerges from the earth and grows straight and tall, as if it wants to reach the heavens. From this plant and its energy, we make our bamboo tools. When I was in Bali about two years ago, I was walking one early morning in Monkey Forest in the town of Ubud. (Monkey Forest is a park, a temple and the habitat for hundreds of monkeys that roam free and wild.) I noticed one of the monkeys rubbing a piece of bamboo against a stone. He was filing the rough edges and then he started massaging his body with the stalk of bamboo! But that was not all; another monkey came over to the one with the bamboo stick and turned his back. He bugged and bugged until the monkey with the stick started massaging him.
From this primal and natural interaction I witnessed in the forest came the creation of a new style of massage, Tian Di bamboo massage. Tian Di in Chinese means "heaven and earth"; this gives the meaning and primary objective of this therapy as a human being is part of the universe and a universe unto itself. Our intention is to help our clients maintain harmony between their minds and souls. As I was working on expanding this technique, I realized that it would be incomplete if just bamboo was used for the session and incorporated concepts and basic principles from TCM (traditional Chinese medicine). What bamboo will bring to the surface needs to be removed from the body with other techniques. Tian Di bamboo massage as a completed therapy is divided in three major segments: massage with bamboo, cupping, and Gua Sha techniques.
Massage With Bamboo
With the bamboo massage we also work at three levels of experience; they are the potential for impacting and changing our clients' responses. Those levels will overlap throughout the treatment and can be described as the physical, mental-emotional and spiritual levels.
I call the bamboo sticks cho sticks (cho is "bamboo" in Chinese). We view the cho sticks as conducts to all levels of experience. They are the first instruments we use in the Tian Di session. A set of cho sticks is arranged by numerous sizes and cuts of bamboo, varying in lengths and diameters. We have 6", 10" and 16" sticks, cut in specific ways for tapotement, digging and gliding. Bamboo is essential and unique because its walls are covered with silica. This creates an outer cover of tiny quartz like crystal matrixes that are activated when they encounter the right conditions of mechanical stress.
The two main properties of quartz are piezo- and pyro-electricity. This is what produces an energetic charge, so unique that science and industry, as well as the metaphysical world, have been interested and using it for many years. Piezo-electricity is activated with pressure, and pyro-electricity with heat. As we work, we apply pressure to the body with the bamboo stick and the friction that is created will activate the molecular structure in the silica... and bang! We have a powerful tool that is charged and will create dramatic and permanent changes.
For your clients, it is a new way of feeling. As they get worked on with the cho sticks the energy that is contained within the walls of the bamboo is transferred to them, creating a series of unique and new sensations. Most people describe these as: tingling all over, feeling connected to the earth, feeling like the bamboo is bending and conforming to the body.
There are many benefits for the practitioner as well. Using the cho sticks minimizes stressing and straining the hands and fingers, while still allowing for deeply penetrating maneuvers. At the same time, as we hold the cho sticks, that energy is transmitted to us, which will help us to maintain strong and healthy hands and wrists, the areas most susceptible to injury in our profession. Once you start working with the tools and learning how to feel through the bamboo, they become an extension of your hands and fingers. But the bamboo is also a channel for us, taking our massage to a more meaningful level, giving our work a new depth and dimension.
Physical: When we apply the piezo-electric principles to the body, the electrical and thermal energy activates peripheral circulation. Enhanced circulation will remove stagnant toxins and move blood throughout the body, heart and lungs, improving internal respiration. Oxygenated blood will return nutrition and healing aid to the cells and tissues of the affected areas. This enables your work to be deeper to relax and realign muscle fibers without causing micro-tears. Working with the cho sticks is like creating a ying-yang, cause and effect. It is giving your client's body space for healing.
Mental-emotional: Emotionally, this therapy provides a total sense of relaxation. While the client's body is feeling the warmth and flexibility of the bamboo, an earth dance will take place around the table with the musical sound of the cho sticks. Stagnant emotions will surface once the client feels relaxed, nourished, and has reached a point of trust. The love that we, as therapists, bring to the session will encourage our clients to freely release and process all their "negative stuff." With a clear mind and resolved emotions there will be balance and connection. The client will experience a healthy relation between the heaven above and the earth below.
Spiritual: Tian Di therapy will reach whatever level of spirituality you are at. If you don't connect with the cho sticks on a spiritual level, if you don't bring that body/mind/spirit awareness to your session, two people are loosing: you and your client. While on the table, it is not unusual for clients to express their experience in profound terms. Even for those who are not able to connect as deep or as high, there will be an experience. They will be able to feel and understand that something profound has taken place. It is not unusual that the effects of Tian Di therapy continue for days after the session. It is as if you have opened a portal and allowed the newness of the experience to enter and linger there.
Cupping and Gua Sha
These techniques work more at a physical level. They come as an aid to finish the work done with the cho sticks. They suction and sweep away what has surfaced from the treatment. Cupping involves placing suction cups on the skin with a vacuum-like device to deeply work on acupressure points along the channels and meridians. (The original cups were made of bamboo but today there are cups made of glass and plastic as well.) The technique is very effective to relieve stagnation. Stagnation refers to congestion or accumulation of fluids, lymph, qi or blood due to lack of movement of any kind.
Cupping is the opposite of massage. In massage therapy, for the most part, we do compressions. We do skin rolling, we lift some, but it is superficial. With cupping, however, we suction and lift. As we glide slowly with the cups, the suction is able to penetrate far deeper than with any other tool we may have. Cupping therapy can aid numerous conditions, ranging from chronic pain, stiff muscles or joints, fatigue, emotional and psychological states, and even some problems with organs. Cupping has been found to penetrate the tissue four inches into the body, stimulating blood flow, helping tissues release toxins, and supporting the lymphatic system.
Gua Sha dates back over 2,000 years ago. It uses round-edged instruments made of horn, stone, bone or pieces of jade, to work along the surface of the skin to promote vitality and flow. In Tian Di therapy, we use jade and horn as Gua Sha tools. In Chinese, Gua (gwa) means to scrape or extract and Sha (shaw), means sand or toxins. So we literally scrape or sand off toxins from the body as they surface from the bamboo and cupping treatment. This ancient method is used to promote qi or bioelectric vital life energy, blood circulation and removal of toxic heat, stagnant blood and lymph fluid from the body. Any patient that suffers from stiff joints, chronic pain, poor circulation, stiff muscles, lymphatic congestion, fatigue, and more will benefit from this treatment.
These three techniques together, bamboo massage, cupping and Gua Sha, make a complete and powerful Tian Di session. The beauty of it is that you as the therapist can choose to use one, two, or all three methods during the session depending on the needs of the client.
As the world expands in knowledge, we expand and we learn more. We receive inspiration and guidance to use tools made out of natural resources. We slowly move back to basics and we impart the benefits of nature to our friends, clients, family and the world.
Ernesto Ortiz, teacher and massage therapist, has been in the massage therapy field for more than 20 years. He has facilitated workshops teaching Tian Di bamboo massage in the U.S., Canada, Egypt, Bali, Australia, the Caribbean, South America and Puerto Rico. For more information visit his Web site: www.journey2theheart.com.
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