Massage & Bodywork

MARCH | APRIL 2016

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Earthing offers great potential for bodyworkers—an utterly simple, natural, yet profound strategy for protecting one's body, energy, and career longevity, which also can be easily incorporated into the work setting. GROUNDED AND UNGROUNDED —A NEW MEANING Earthing gives a new meaning to the concept of being grounded or ungrounded. These terms refer typically to a holistic perspective that takes into account subjective qualities like the mental and emotional state of individuals, their connection with themselves and their surroundings, or the level of stress they experience. Psychological calmness is sometimes equated with being grounded. Ungrounded people are sometimes described as frenzied, scattered, stressed- out, or uncomfortable. They may be fatigued, imbalanced, injury-prone, pale, or uncoordinated. Often, it is their inflamed and painful bodies that bring them for treatments. These individuals may also be described figuratively as "disconnected from the earth." With Earthing, the concept of groundedness takes on a literal meaning: a connection between the earth's surface charge and your bioelectrical body. When thus grounded, your body absorbs electrons from the ground, stabilizing and benefiting your body in multiple ways. THE VITAL ELECTRON Feedback from massage and bodywork practitioners, along with Earthing research, is yielding a new perspective about why so many therapists drop out of the profession and why those who stay often suffer chronically—like the clients they treat—from pain and energy issues. The feedback and research indicate that typical clients come to the table with considerable inflammation, and that the 76 m a s s a g e & b o d y w o r k m a r c h / a p r i l 2 0 1 6 T o prevent injury, burnout, and attrition, experts emphasize strategies like proper technique, ergonomically sound body mechanics and posture, a user-friendly workspace, adequate rest between sessions and workdays, an energy-boosting diet, a realistic client load and schedule, continuing education, and seeking treatment at the first sign of injury. Yet, with all these good measures, the fallout and burnout continue. What's missing from these strategies, in my opinion, is Earthing: grounding the body to the earth. GROUNDING FOR PROTECTION Earthing (also known as grounding) refers to physical contact with the natural frequencies pulsating throughout the surface of our planet. These frequencies are caused by the motion of subatomic particles called electrons. A virtually unlimited and unseen reservoir of these energetic electrons gives the earth's surface a gentle, negative charge. You make contact with this natural energy, for example, by going barefoot outside and/ or sleeping, relaxing, or working inside while using conductive grounding products. Emerging research is showing that such simple contact has major health and healing benefits. It restores and stabilizes a natural electrical state within the complex circuitry of your bioelectrical body. Your self-regulating and self-healing mechanisms become more effective. You get head-to-toe improvements like better blood flow, reduced inflammation, less pain, more energy and calmness, and deeper sleep. For many people, the effect is dramatic, mimicking what happens when you charge a run-down battery. Because of these effects, Earthing is creating a significant buzz in the health world. Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever! (Basic Health Publication, 2010), has been published in 15 languages. 1 I have written extensively about this discovery since 2004 and participated in some of the more than 20 peer-reviewed studies published during the last 15 years. 2

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