Medical Massage

Medical Massage Therapy, as taught by David Morin, allows the client to remain fully clothed (in comfortable athletic or loose-fitting attire) for the duration of the session.

Sessions begin with a Postural Analysis and Physical Assessment using Active Range of Motion (AROM), Passive Range of Motion (PROM), and other specific regional tests depending on the client's chief complaints and goals. This helps to determine the best course of action for the massage. These tests also help to track healing progress. During a typical session, clients will lay supine (face up), prone (face down), and on their sides supported by pillows in order to address different muscles and their attachments.

Medical Massage combines several modalities, including: 

  • Joint Mobilization using both AROM and PROM.

  • Skin Rolling and Lifting to assess and treat the fascial layer.

  • Muscle Energy Techniques (METs), a form of manual therapy which uses a muscle's own energy in the form of gentle isometric contractions to relax and lengthen the muscles.

  • Neuromuscular Therapy (NMT) utilizes classic massage techniques of compression, petrissage, friction, and effleurage to release tension in the muscle belly and attachments, sometimes including stretching of the muscles. 

  • Trigger Point Therapy uses static pressure combined with cross-fiber friction in order to release trigger points, which typically send pain radiating to surrounding areas of the body.

  • Myofascial Therapy is a slow deliberate technique used to expand the fascia. This technique uses no lotion or oil, and is applied with a light to moderate pressure. Heat is sometimes applied to aid in this process.

1 - 3 Pressure Scale

I work with a firm touch, but that doesn't meant the massage should be painful. Everyone's pain tolerance is different, so it is important to have clear communication with my clients during their treatments. In my practice I use a 1-3 Pressure Scale for this purpose:

  1. You could handle more pressure

  2. The pressure is just right

  3. That pressure is a little much, I'm starting to tense up, please back off a bit. 

Anything above a 2 is TOO MUCH. If you find yourself tensing up or holding your breath, that is a good indicator that too much pressure is being used. This means the muscle is tensing or spasming in an effort to protect itself. Using more pressure to try to force the muscle to relax is counterproductive. Instead, using a lighter pressure will allow the muscle to relax and melt tension away. For this reason, I like to stay within the 1-2 pressure zone.

Medical Massage can be used to treat a variety of complaints, including: 

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Thoracic Outlet Syndrome

  • Migraines/Headaches

  • Knee Pain

  • Low Back Pain

  • Shoulder Pain

  • Whiplash

  • Structural Imbalances (forward head, high shoulder, high hip, etc)

  • Temporo-Mandibular Joint (TMJ) Dysfunction 

  • and Much More

Applied Kinesiology

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Applied Kinesiology (AK) is a natural, holistic approach to creating and maintaining optimal health and well-being. This system understands that we are energetic beings living in a sea of energy. Bioelectrical energy, also known as chi, flows through various pathways called meridians throughout the body. When this energy flows unobstructed, we feel and perform our best physically, mentally and emotionally. 

Applied Kinesiology is both an art and a science, which uses muscle testing to communicate with the body's innate intelligence to get a wide variety of information about the state of the body/mind and how things affect it. This method focuses on the Muscle-Meridian-Organ relationship. Every muscle in the body is linked to an acupuncture meridian and a vital organ or gland. There are a few key points to keep in mind:

  • Physical stress can affect your mental and emotional state, as well as your biochemistry.

  • Your biochemistry affects your physical body and your mood.

  • Your thoughts and emotions affect your biochemistry and your physical body.

 

When everything is functioning optimally, the muscle will test strong during the muscle test. But if there is an imbalance in any part of this triad, for example if the organ or meridian is under stress, the muscle will test weak. This provides valuable information about potential energy blockages. Once these blockages are discovered, there are a variety of methods that can be used to restore balance, some of which are:

  • Treating the Neurolymphatic Reflexes of the body for pain relief and energy enhancement.

  • Lightly holding the Neurovascular Points located mostly in the head, which correspond to the different organs, muscles, and meridians.

  • Tracing the affected meridians

Applied Kinesiology may be included with Medical Massage to increase the benefit.