Guide to Gifting Massage

Posted Posted in My Practice

When you’re relaxing on a massage table, it’s easy to see massage as a gift. Whether you’re there to reduce pain, to ease anxiety, to help you recover from the physical and mental stresses work or athletic training or parenting or simply being alive, massage is a moment of freedom in an occasionally crushing world. If you’re thinking of gifting massage with someone else for a special occasion or “just because,” you are almost certainly doing so from a place of love and generosity. Obviously, I’m a big fan of gifting massage as a present! But just as with choosing […]

Stress Management for the Whole Family

Posted Posted in Healthy Living

Stressors come in all kinds of forms: work and school pressures, relationships, health concerns, uncertainty about the future. Even changes that are generally positive can still be incredibly stressful, like gaining a family member or starting a new business. Left unchecked, stress can lead to a host of symptoms, including headaches, disrupted sleep, nausea, irritability, lack of focus, and poor impulse control. Tips for stress management are frequently repeated and generally well-known: Get some exercise! Talk with a friend! Breathe deeply! Get a massage! But while most of us recognize at least a few of these symptoms from stressful periods […]

What is Therapeutic Massage?

Posted Posted in My Practice

Recently a client said she wanted a good therapeutic massage. I thought, I’m perfect for you because that’s exactly what I do. Later, I began to think more about our conversation and thought I would share my thoughts with you. All massage is therapeutic in nature. The difference between types of massage is based on your goals. Say you get a massage because that’s how you relax and take care of yourself. That is therapeutic. You are recognizing that your body and mind are craving something healing. By getting a massage, your nervous system has a chance to get out […]

What Do We Really Know About Pain?

Posted Posted in Healthy Living

Pain is one of those “you know it when you feel it” kind of sensations. But it’s also a strange phenomenon, when you think about it. A snowball is cold, and so it feels cold when you touch it. A block of concrete is rough, so it feels rough when you touch it. But a knife isn’t painful on its own. Neither is a pot of boiling water or the leg of a table. We handle these things safely all the time and experience their mass and temperature and texture. But pain exists only in the body, and even more […]

Dealing with Rotator Cuff Injuries

Posted Posted in Conditions treated

You’ve been doing Olympic lifting for a while. Or stocking tall shelves. Or cheerleading, throwing your partners overhead. Everything was great! Until suddenly, it wasn’t. Ice and ibuprofen didn’t quite do the trick, so you visited the doctor. And lo and behold, you’ve got a rotator cuff injury and two questions: How the heck did this happen? and What on earth do I do now? You and your shoulder: it’s complicated! Dem bones Despite all falling under one general name, the “shoulder” actually consists of four (or maybe five) different joints. The sternoclavicular joint is where your collar bone connects […]

Stress, Anxiety, and Massage

Posted Posted in Healthy Living

Why get a massage? According to a survey conducted by the American Massage Therapy Association, 28% of Americans who get a massage do so for relaxation and stress reduction. That’s a lot of people in the US who feel strongly enough about their own experiences with massage for stress reduction to put their money on it. But aside from individual feelings, what exactly do we know about massage and how it relates to stress and anxiety? And what does the research have to say about that? What is stress? What is anxiety? Stress Stress is your body’s response to demanding […]

February is American Heart Month

Posted Posted in Healthy Living

February is American Heart Month. The goal is to raise awareness about heart disease and how it can be prevented. Heart disease is a term used to describe several different cardiovascular-related illnesses, such as arrhythmia, high blood pressure, and heart failure. It is the number one cause of death in the US, accounting for 2,300 deaths every day. In addition, heart disease affects an estimated 44 million American women. Although these numbers are staggering, lifestyle changes and education may prevent 80% of heart disease and stroke events. Being active can help lower blood pressure, improve circulation, and control weight. Massage […]

New Year Resolutions

Posted Posted in Healthy Living

It’s the start of a new year and a time for many people to make resolutions or set goals. I’ve honestly never been one to treat the transition from one year to the next with any deference or commitment. But for some reason, probably because of the start of a new business and the certifications I’ve been working on, when I think about the new year, I am drawn to an excerpt from a book that was read to me during a yoga class- a meditation called “Going Easy”. My favorite parts are: “Go easy. You may have to push […]

Stretches That I Love (and will most likely suggest you do)

Posted Posted in Healthy Living

DOORWAY STRETCH If you feel you are hunched over or if you have pain in your upper back, my suggestion to perform stretches of your chest. It may sound counterintuitive, but there is a method to the madness- it’s all connected! The pectoralis major muscle medially rotates the shoulder (think rounded shoulders) and it is connected to the humerus (the upper arm bone). The rhomboids (the muscles between the medial side of the shoulder blade and the spine) retract your shoulder blades. In certain postures, the pec can pull forward, causing a stretch of the rhomboids. A pain may be […]

How I chose to become a Massage Therapist

Posted Posted in My Practice

People often ask me how I decided to become a massage therapist. It’s never an easy answer, especially since I find the story to be quite long and I’m usually asked by a person receiving a massage. So here it is- the long version.   I wish I could tell you that massage came to me in some sort of magical way, but it didn’t. The truth is that it came to me as an epiphany. That is, after months of a thorough search of what to do with my life post-college. I’m a scientist at heart. I like facts […]