Massage & Bodywork

SEPTEMBER | OCTOBER 2018

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A B M P m e m b e r s e a r n F R E E C E a t w w w. a b m p . c o m / c e b y r e a d i n g M a s s a g e & B o d y w o r k m a g a z i n e 77 treadmill or walk Coconut Grove every afternoon after returning from the TRI. I go to a breakfast club every morning (we mostly discuss politics) and a sailing club on the ocean every evening (we mostly do not discuss politics). I get a massage a week. So, I'm very much a creature of habit except for my teaching tours." Every August, she ventures northeast to see her now 42-year-old "beautiful, very smart, great writer, and farmer daughter," where she spends most of the month helping her tend to her organic farm. "She is mostly in New York City getting a graduate degree at Union Theological Seminary, but in the summer she does organic veggie and medicinal farming. I spend most of August helping her on the farm and editing her papers for publication." TRI TODAY Research with Field's beloved preemies continues today at TRI, with other current research at the institute exploring massage for hip pain, and massage for veterans with PTSD to reduce their depression and sleep issues, the latter of which she is especially excited about. And does her work continue to hold up to scrutiny? "Yes. There are hundreds of replications around the world, mostly on preemies and on pain syndromes. Every two years I write a review paper and I am amazed at how many researchers are studying the effects of massage—mostly outside our country." Yes, the massage profession owes much to Tiffany Field. Ultimately, however, it's the preemie babies who get to go home earlier, the HIV patients whose immune systems are bolstered, the cocaine-addicted babies who are able to thrive, and the countless others whose lives were changed by the massage mechanisms Field helped prove throughout her storied career who reap the greatest benefit of her work. Notes 1. T. Field, "Why the Touch-Deprived Can't Wait for Portland's Cuddle Shop," The Guardian, November 28, 2014, accessed July 2018, www.theguardian. com/commentisfree/2014/nov/28/portland- cuddle-shop-touch-deprived-depression-health. 2. T. Field et al., "Tactile/Kinesthetic Stimulation Effects on Preterm Neonates," Pediatrics 77 (1986): 654–58. 3. The Golden Goose Award, "History," accessed July 2018, www.goldengooseaward.org/history. 4. The Golden Goose Award, "Awardees," accessed July 2018, www.goldengooseaward. org/awardees/rat-and-infant-massage. Karrie Osborn is senior editor at Massage & Bodywork. Field's work with prematurely born infants is what cemented her place in massage therapy history. While other countries pour money into their massage research, the US institute that helped legitimize an industry of healing professionals may no longer be able to keep its doors open for lack of funding, effectively shutting down Field's decades of massage therapy research. A PASSION FUELED BY SCIENCE, A LIFE FUELED BY JOY As yet undeterred, Field admits she's a workaholic. It's why, for this avid scientist, retirement is not part of her long-term plan. "I have never thought about retiring," she says. And why should she? Her work is what fuels her passion and joy. "I'm a workaholic by nature and have so much energy and excitement about massage therapy effects that I want to keep researching them," she says. But self-professed workaholic or not, Field's life is more full and balanced than most. Look at her daily routine and it makes sense. "I swim laps every morning at 6:30 a.m., teach tai chi and yoga, and do the

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