Let me tell you a story…..
Back when I was in massage school at Irene’s Myomassology Institute way back in 2002, all I wanted to do was go and work at a fancy day spa and do fancy body treatments. And, after I got out of massage school I got a job at the Elizabeth Arden Red Door Salon and Spa inside of Saks Fifth Avenue. And voila, I had my dream job! Only, it was kind of my dream nightmare! Being pressed to upsell services and products, seeing clients back to back, doing these cookie cutter massages. I was miserable. I think I quit that place at least 4 different times until I finally quit for good after I accidentally opened Royal Oak Massage in October 2004.
Now, for the sake of keeping things short, I’ll spare you from the details of EVERY continuing education course I’ve taken (but it includes neuromuscular therapy, shiatsu, thai massage, myoskeletal alignment techniques, rotator cuff and more). You see, there are literally hundreds of different types of massage that exists, and some are completely new and unique and others put a spin on existing materials to turn it into something fresh.
I’m coming up on 13 years of running my massage practice and the average career lifespan of a massage therapist is 7 years, so I’m already almost double that but in 2016 I was starting to get bored. I had (and still have) a very loyal following and business is only getting better with all of the new treatment options I am able to offer. So, today I’m going to talk about a few of those treatments as well as what is on the horizon for 2017.
Oh Lokte Method and your creator (and my soul friend/spirit animal, Ashley O’Connell)…..you’ve changed my life and my practice. This technique utilizes a pin and stretch modality using body weight (delivered by my feet) to create more effective, lasting results. It is used for chronic pain, repetitive use injury and range of motion problems. This is a relatively new technique but is catching on fast, and professional sports teams have started utilizing it in their training-the Chicago Bears, Worlds Strongest Man, Denver Broncos, Chicago Cubs and more. However, it’s not just for the professional athletes in the world, take a look at some photos of people that I have personally treated and the results after just one session (usually under 10 minutes too).
Fascial Stretch Therapy (or FST) is a very different approach to manual therapy that focuses on the connective tissue system rather than isolated muscle treatment. We assess passive, active and resisted movements in functional positions as well as on the treatment table. The approach starts with assessment and treatment where needed at the deepest part of the connective tissue system – the joint capsule. It progresses through all the layers of fascia, ending with the superficial layer. Where the central or peripheral nervous system is restricted or not optimal in movement, proper neural mechanics is restored. Muscles that were inhibited are activated while those that are over activated are normalized. Decreased pain, stress and increased function and mobility is a typical result from a session. I recently had a client (my very first client actually) come in for a 60 minute FST session and after getting off of the table, her low back pain that she had been suffering with for years was GONE. Even now, 2 months later, and a few touch up sessions, even I am amazed at how much more mobile she is and how free everything is. There’s a reason why we say “Set it free with FST!”
But wait! There’s more!
I have never wanted to be a revolving door practice. I am not a spa, and I don’t thrive on getting as many new people in the door in a week or a month as I can. I thrive on FIXING PEOPLE. I have people that have come in for 2 Lokte Method sessions and I don’t see them for months. I have people that make massage part of their regular health and wellness routine on a weekly, biweekly or monthly basis. I take a more clinical approach to my work and if you’re looking for a last minute appointment, fancy robes, cucumber water and a serene atmosphere, well you may want to go to one of the several franchise establishments in the area. Currently I am booked 4-5 weeks in advance and while I don’t always enjoy having to turn people away, I guess that’s a testament to my work? 🙂
I am excited that 2017 is bringing another round of trainings and continuing education (which I said in 2016 I was done with, whoops!) but I will be adding Levels 2 and 3 of Lokte Method, Level 2 of Fascial Stretch Therapy as well as taking on a new role: Yoga Tune Up Teacher. (More on that later, but it’s amazing!).
When it comes down to it, we only get one life and one body so why aren’t we treating it with the utmost respect? We spend so much money on looking good (getting our hair done, nails done, facials, clothes, etc), imagine what would happen if more people started spending money on FEELING good?
In good hands,
Rebecca Tamm, LMT