Cupping Massage

I’m very happy to now be offering Cupping Massage as a part of my approach to myofascial release and deep tissue massage sessions! This technique is the ancient practice of applying glass cups to the skin. The inside of the cup is heated quickly and then applied to the skin creating a vacuum. As a result, the tissues lying underneath the cup are drawn up by the suction.

The goal is to help relieve tension and adhesions in the fascia and muscular tissue by the inverse process usually provided by massage. Instead of manually pushing the tissue down and stretching it, we pull the tissue up via the cup and stretch it. This gives us a unique approach to treating long standing tension, scar tissue and other issues that limit full function.

Cups can be left stationary and also glide on the skin. My technique is to combine the placement and movement of the cups to help assist in deep muscular release that myofascial release and other neuromuscular techniques provide within the same session.

Cupping does leave behind visible marks as a result of drawing blood and lymph fluid to the surface. These marks will vary depending on how taught the tissue underneath it is and how long the cup is left in place. These “cupping kisses” can last anywhere from 48 hours to 10 days.

Please contact me for more information about how cupping can help you regain range of motion and relieve tension!

Season’s Greetings!

The Sun is soon to return longer in each day! Time to celebrate!! And so, wanting to wish you a wonderful Holiday Season and much cheer and goodwill, I bring to you opportunities to bring the benefits of massage with you into the New Year for yourself and for your loved ones!

I am announcing another location you can buy Gift Certificates! At your convenience, please feel free to stop on down to Mother Earth Natural Foods here in Geneva, at 441 Exchange Street, anytime during operation hours (Monday-Thursday 9:30am-5:30pm, Friday 9:30am-6pm & Saturday 10 am-3pm). You’ll find upon asking that Gift Certificates are available behind the register counter and will be available to purchase by cash or check. I will only be able to charge debit or credit cards here in the office or over the phone.

Mother Earth Natural Foods is a wonderful health food & vitamin store that I have been working with since I’ve been working as an LMT here in Geneva starting in 2006. I have been a customer of theirs since I was a teen. Can’t say enough about how much I love them!

This Holiday Season I am also listing packages available through Dec 31st, 2014. Packages are perfect for those who need some concentrated amounts of TLC and/or are recovering from a particular strain/injury. Receiving the benefits of bodywork sessions scheduled closely together can make a big difference! There is a savings per package and it gradually increases per the quantity of sessions in each. **

3- One Hour Massage Sessions ~ $165
(a savings of $15!)

6- One Hour Massage Sessions ~ $315
(a savings of $45!)

9- One Hour Massage Sessions ~ $540
!! 10th Massage free !! (a savings of $60!)

Have a wonderful season of celebration, and many wishes of a happy and healthy New Year!!

** Please note:
The modality of techniques used in each package can be your choice, but the time frames and quantities stay the same. These packages are to be used by an individual or couple, and cannot be broken up into separate Gift Certificates for multiple people. All packages must be used within a year of purchase date.

I’m still kickin’!

Wow.
So I definitely need to get back on track on staying up to date here! I’ll be making some visual changes here over the summer. The usual updates, virtual tidying up and what not. I’m hoping that summer won’t totally take off and leave me wondering where all of my time went, but I make no guarantees. 😉

In the mean time, please know that I am working in the same location and am as happy as ever! Please feel free to drop me a line or give a call as well… and soak up as much of that sunshine and fresh air as you can while we have it!

Cheers!

The Courtship of Massage Therapy and Health Care

Sooo…  There is a very touchy subject we all have as a nation before us.  Politricks is not a subject that I normally bring up in the office.  It usually reverses that feeling of relaxation, so it’s a general no-no until it effects the very field I work in.  I read an excellent article earlier this week and have been letting it tumble around in my little head about how I would like to share this with you.  My goal today is to explain to you my own concerns of Massage Therapy “being included” in a “traditional” health care setting.  I would LOVE to hear some feedback on this!  I’ll also include a link to this article later on below.

That being said,  I’ll make my main point first.

True Therapeutic Massage (Medical/Clinical Massage) always approaches the client as a whole being.  Not as a symptom, not as a list of complaints that need to be subdued or have pills thrown at and certainly not as a small number of visits allowed in which you can only work in certain areas.  When using Medical Massage, the client is included in the whole process,  is shown what is causing injury/strain and given the tools to change themselves.  It is very much up to the client how much they want to recover and get back to functional living again.

When I have someone come into my office, we go over many aspects of the client’s activities, typical routine, range of motion, injuries and physical restrictions.  Why?  Because there you will typically find what causes many of the postural issues that cause common strains, aches & pains within the client.  As we work together more, it’s normal to find that session goals change, new information relating to past injuries may surface which gains a greater insight into present dis-function.  There is always a goal of rehabilitation and there is always a wide scope lens being used by the Therapist (me!) to get there.   Your pulled neck could very well be from the fact that you carry your hip higher on the left than the right.  There is NO way to treat one  area of the body without treating the rest of it!  So we start treating and releasing it, and the client is given stretches and strengthening tips to help resolve this issue.   For most folks, this is a normal experience with their Massage Therapist.

IF Massage Therapy were to be included in a “typical” health care system, how might this change? As is stands, the best experience I’ve gotten of this possibility thus far is when I’m working with No Fault Insurance claims.  Let me share with you some of my struggles.

This situation is always due to some type of automobile accident and the client receives a Prescription for massage.  Each Rx is usually for 4-8 sessions, depending on the severity of the accident and the length of time for each session.  As it stands, I have to advise the client to have the Rx written out for 1/2 hour sessions, as the insurance companies will not cover a full hour of massage.  They will only pay for 45 minutes within a 48 hour period.  This is part of our NY No fault Regulation (68) Law and  it hasn’t changed since 2002.   Personally, I prefer to see clients at least 2x weekly when recovering from accidents.  Thus a Rx for eight 1/2 hour massages is a great solution.   So far, not a big problem.

Insurance companies dictate to me what they will pay me, they do NOT ask what I charge.  In fact, they don’t care.  I was told at one point, that if  I had a problem with the way things were to take it up with my local legislature.  WOW, that blew me away!   The fact that I would have to talk to my local congressman about getting paid fairly by an insurance company (i.e. forcing them with some kind of law change!!) and not talk directly to someone within the company itself should speak volumes to more people than just me!  I’m not looking to make a quick buck here, in fact I get paid less through No Fault Insurance than what my normal fees are in my office!    Rates typically change because the cost of operation goes up.  Insurance companies know that reasoning very well as they use it all the time.  However, they do not travel down a two way street and don’t use that same logic when it comes to having to pay an LMT for their work.  The cost of operation has certainly changed since 2002 for the typical Massage Therapist.

Now we come to my biggest issue.  While I am working with a client with such a Rx, I am not allowed to work on any other place of the body except for those given a code for in the Rx itself.  If your neck was injured, and I know that you would have a much better release if I were to able to work within the pelvis first, I wouldn’t be able to.  It’s not part of the neck, Therefore it’s not included in the “approved” areas that need massage.  This kind of rule is understandable to an extent, however it hinders true healing in the long run.  Many MD’s don’t look at the muscular body the same way a Massage Therapist does,  Insurance companies definitely do not at all.  Why am I wanting to focus on the opposite side of the body that received impact?  Because it contracted and reacted more to the physical trauma of the accident.  The client may feel sensitivity/pain in the  neck, however it could be from the pelvis that was thrown to one side introducing compensation in the center of balance within the client.  It could be a combination of the physical trauma of the accident and what the client does for a living.  I have to be able to treat the whole body to get the best results, not just the areas the Insurance company will “cover”.   Try explaining that to an Insurance Rep, they don’t care.  No massaging any other areas during the session, they are not budging.

If Massage Therapy were to be included in a health care system that is already treating it like this, what would the ultimate impact be?  Would there ever be an understanding that the Medical Massage Therapist has very direct and specific techniques to help the elimination of pain and that no matter what they need the space to work and effect the whole body of the client?  Or would we continue to see a power struggle between Insurance companies, the regulation makers and the Therapist?  I’m worried that the benefits of massage, the client becoming aware of the whole self and treatment of the whole person would be lost.  We might loose the ability (or even worse, the right!!) to heal ourselves altogether.  That’s the scenario I want to avoid completely.  If that means that I don’t work within a system that doesn’t understand what it is that I do in the first place, then I know that my clients and I will be all the better for it.

What do you think? I want to know your concerns and how this might affect you and your families.  We’re all wanting the same goal, to have a system in which the client IS the center.  Where we the practitioners work TOGETHER to benefit the client and not coat pockets.  Can it be done?

The Corruptibility of Facts

By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB

Top Ten Reasons To Get A Massage

woman getting stone therapy

This article was found at the following link…  🙂

http://www.spabeautyed.com/career-center/top-massage-reasons/

Receiving a massage is a great way to pamper yourself. No trip to the spa would be complete without visiting a Massage Therapist . In addition, massage can be a pathway to improved health and well-being.

Did you know that Hippocrates, the father of medicine, was also a massage therapist? He used massage to treat sprains, dislocations and constipation, writing in 380 BC, “A physician must be experienced in many things but assuredly also in rubbing.” Today’s massage therapists are trained in a broad range of techniques to help clients overcome illness and injury while helping increase vigor and vitality.

Here are the top ten reasons people seek Massage Therapy.

10. Stimulate and detoxify the body.

The lymph system is the body’s natural defense system against toxins and impurities.  Massage Therapy stimulates the flow of toxic waste from muscles, organs and tissues for improved health and digestion.

9. Relax muscle tension and improve mobility and flexibility.

Massage stimulates blood circulation, increasing oxygen and nutrient flow to connective tissue and muscles, easing tension and muscle knots while soothing and lubricating overworked joints for increased flexibility.

8. Recover from injury more quickly.

Massage breaks up scar tissue, giving tissue and bones improved movement. The International Journal of Neuroscience points out that among other traumas improved by massage, research shows massage therapy improves functional abilities, range of motion and muscle strength in patients suffering from spinal cord injuries.

7. Improve posture.

Massage can improve body posture by helping train muscles to be in the right position, improving their ability to support the bone structure of the body.

6. Prevent injury and illness.

Tense muscles pull and tighten the body, restrict circulation and pull the body out of alignment. Unattended, this can lead to a host of problems. Regular massage relaxes the body and can prevent many chronic conditions from taking hold.

5. Enhance and maintain good health.

Massage is to the human body what a tune-up is to a car. The International Journal of Neuroscience mentions that massage helps reduce heart rate and lower blood pressure. In addition, massage helps boost the immune system by increasing the production of the body’s natural killer cells, especially for those with challenges such as HIV.

4. Increase attitude and alertness.

Massage improves attitude. It gets things flowing in the brain by stimulating brain-wave activity and helping increase alertness.

3. Relieve pain.

Massage helps block nervous system pain receptors and increase blood flow to the muscles. It can reduce the pain of arthritis as it relieves and increases joint mobility, taking pressure off painful joints. Trained massage therapists can help ease the pain of migraines, childbirth and cancer. The Journal of Clinical Rheumatology points out that a massage can also ease the pain of fibromyalgia.

2. Reduce stress.

Massage calms the body and helps relax the mind, in turn helping reduce stress by lowering the body’s cortisol levels, a prime ingredient in stress. Considering that stress is responsible for most illness, alleviating stress can make a major difference in overall health and attitude.

And the number one reason to get a massage?

1. It feels wonderful!

As anyone who has had a massage can attest, afterwards you feel wonderfully relaxed with a smile on your face. In addition to all of its other health benefits, massage stimulates the body to secrete endorphins, the hormones responsible for creating the elation often referred to as the “runner’s high.”

If you’ve never experienced a professional massage, now is the time to try it out – it will only take one visit to discover why massage is so popular and massage therapists are in such high demand!