I have been a massage therapist/bodyworker for almost 15 years now and a massage instructor for the past seven or so years. I have a background in Kinesiology (the study of body movement) where I have a B.S degree in exercise physiology and a few thousand hours in massage education. Through my education and experience, I have learned that one needs to have a solid understanding of both the art and science behind massage therapy to be the most effective in their treatment approach.
When we look at the science behind massage and bodywork, we need to understand the factors behind the everyday stress and/or chronic pain that we experience.
How do these stressors affect our bodies, including the muscles, nervous system, connective tissue, and joints?
We also need to understand how massage affects the body as well.
How does massage/bodywork help against these stressors and bring the body back to a more functional state?
My educational background and experience have taught me to exam these factors with each one of my clients so we can work together to develop the best treatment options for them.
We do this through some initial intake questions and assessment techniques. This way the sessions are more effective at getting to the roots of the issues instead of just treating the symptoms. I also like to use this opportunity to educate the client as well on why they are feeling the way they are feeling and how to be involved in their healing process as well. It is just as important for them to understand these factors as well. Let’s prevent the fires instead of just putting them out.
When we look at the art behind massage therapy and bodywork, we look at the tools a therapist has at their disposal to treat the factors that we find above. What techniques work best at getting to the issues that one may have due to the stressors listed above. Through my experiences and education, I have developed many different tools to help with these stressors. These included neuromuscular techniques to deal with muscle spasms and pain, myofascial release techniques to loosen up the connective tissue surround the muscles preventing full movement of the joints, and assessment skills to look at any functional and/or structural issues as well. When a client comes in for a session, the intent is to come up with a treatment plan that works best for them. Having the tools at my disposal, that I have, I am more able to treat any ailments that one may come to me to help with. Over the years, I have treated many different including neck and back issues (whiplash and sciatic problems), shoulder issues (rotator cuff, thoracic outlet syndrome and frozen shoulder), TMJ dysfunction, knee issues, and carpal tunnel problems as well. I also have treated many who are just affected by stress for everyday life as well.
I have also experienced chronic pain issues myself, in the past, due to a serious car accident, and I know how to affect massage and bodywork can be when someone is dealing with these issues. So whatever your stress issue may be, together we can come up with the best treatment plan that will work for you. If you have any questions or would like any more information as to how my treatment approach can help you, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Robert K. Taylor, B.S, LMT, NCTMB