Massage & Bodywork

JANUARY | FEBRUARY 2020

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Ta k e 5 a n d t r y A B M P F i v e - M i n u t e M u s c l e s a t w w w. a b m p . c o m / f i v e - m i n u t e - m u s c l e s . 93 tension, when there is injustice, and when there is a cultural chasm. We see it when the parts of a whole are not functioning well together. With this in mind, let's look at the parts that make up a whole human. The cells, molecules, neurons, hormones, organelles, organs, tissues, and systems that define and dictate who we are act individually and together to create a living body. If we can envision these groups of cells and chemicals like we see groups of people in a community, we start to see things in a different light. When it comes to social dis-ease, aches and twinges are the picket lines demanding to be heard, repetitive strains are the local leaders lobbying for a shift in protocol, and chronic pain is the global outcry for a deeper change. POSTURE AND MOVEMENT: BEYOND THE SKELETON Posture is the embodiment of this particular version of social unrest. Extending beyond an asymmetric skeleton or an inhibited muscle firing pattern, how we hold ourselves is the expression of when one or more of the parts of the whole are in disharmony. There is a social, emotional, and psychological component to posture that carries significant weight. Ignoring these issues is the equivalent to a president denying the existence of an entire state. What I have noticed in my years as a bodyworker is that correcting the degree of knee flexion, the length of the spine, and the tilt of the head is effective and should be addressed. Inefficient function causes pain and screams for attention. But there are also large numbers of people who practice careless computer-ing, sustained social media-ing, and continuous couch-potato-ing on a regular basis and experience no pain. Similar to how a loud noise would be intolerable for someone who has a migraine, an inefficient tilt of the pelvis will create a pain response for someone whose parts are disharmonious. Paying attention to these subtle clues will be the key to guiding your client into wellness. So what can we, as bodyworkers, do to help? Create a new movement. There are several ways to create new movement. • Introduce new modalities that bring a shift in body awareness. • Place your client in altering positions that will change the way a muscle responds. • Engage your client's tissues in activation techniques that trick the nervous system into new communication patterns. • And, arguably most importantly, make sure you are connected to a health-care network you trust. Anxiety, depression, childhood trauma, and threatening or oppressive situations are all out of our scope of practice. But, if you suspect your client is suffering from an internal social unrest, make sure you have the resources at hand to guide them to a professional who can help. Scars run deep and grip many layers. Being able to refer someone to the right individual might be just as important as filling our offices of power with the right candidates. Managing those scars with the right team might be the link to a deeper harmony. You have the power to create a new social movement. Begin with your practice. Notes 1. Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary, "Movement," accessed November 2019, http://unabridged. merriam-webster.com/collegiate/movement. Allison Denney is a certified massage therapist and certified YouTuber. You can find her massage tutorials at YouTube.com/RebelMassage. She is also passionate about creating products that are kind, simple, and productive for therapists to use in their practices. Her products, along with access to her blog and CE opportunities, can be found at www.rebelmassage.com. Movement is life. Stagnation is death. Ancient Eastern philosophy Watch "The Deep Muscles of the Spine!"

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