Massage & Bodywork

MARCH | APRIL 2021

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EDITOR'S NOTE physical reactions in the brain, how pre-treatment expectation predisposes clients to get more (or less) benefi t from their work with you. Client expectation (before treatment) is an even bigger predictor of benefi t than the modality used" [emphasis mine]. Til and Whitney conclude this article with a self-assessment chart that serves as a secret-shopper checklist of things to do to ensure you're setting yourself up for success. Finally, Sasha Chaitow's "Listen, My Body Electric" (page 42) tackles the "quiet revolution" in biomedical disciplines about the possibility of fl ipping treatment plans and "allowing patients to guide the process," putting the "patient's side of the story" front and center. "The true revolution . . . is to reeducate . . . to see patients not in terms of their pathology . . . instead, they are perceived as whole individuals whose lived experience and whose own narratives of illness will point the way to both assessment and treatment." Clearly, something's afoot. Yes, your touch skills need to be on point. But the periphery to your work is equally valuableā€”if not more so. This includes your warm greeting, your detailed intake with expectations discussed, your credentials proudly displayed, and your engaged listening to ensure your client is heard and thus is an active participant in the therapeutic relationship. Perhaps we can sum this up with: in the continuing evolution of practitioner-client involvement, leave nothing to chance. MTs sometimes believe that if they can add just one more technique to their toolbox, it will equate to achievement. However, your therapeutic touch may not be correlated to a full book; rather, it's likely the little things that will tip the scale and result in success: the combination of your touch, your mindset, and your partnership with your client. We hope you enjoy these articles and the breadth of other topics in this issue. DARREN BUFORD Editor-in-Chief darren@abmp.com The Little Things Aren't So Little In the continuing evolution of practitioner-client involvement, leave nothing to chance. As we were working on this issue, a theme emerged among several of our articles: sweat the small stuff. Yes, your hands-on work is tangible, valuable, rejuvenating, transformative. And even then, it's likely only one component of the full therapeutic encounter. Begin this issue by reading Cindy Williams's column "Being a Client Makes You a Better Therapist" (page 32). It's about a "nightmare" session in which everything that could have gone wrong did. When it arrived in our editors' inboxes, it stopped us in our tracks and served as the topic du jour. It even inspired our Speak Your Mind question this issue (page 17). From the massage environment (entryway, bathroom, treatment room) to the intake process, and from the session opening to the communication during the session, everything was amiss during Cindy's massage. It's no wonder she won't be rebooking with this therapist. She did, however, learn many valuable lessons to inform her own practice: considering and setting client expectations at the outset and exceeding them before, during, and afterward are pivotal. In "Putting Client Expectations to Work" (page 90), Til Luchau and Whitney Lowe write about practitioners' ability to increase outcomes even before the client lies on your table. "Client expectation triggers 8 m a s s a g e & b o d y wo r k m a rc h /a p r i l 2 0 2 1

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