Massage & Bodywork

JULY | AUGUST 2016

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Soma Cupping By Gregory Gorey What combines the ancient traditions of Asian medicine and key fascia-releasing techniques? Cupping massage. In fact, this modern take on an ancient therapy brings together the best of both worlds. A FIELD OF CONTRADICTIONS I received 14 months of well-rounded and comprehensive massage school training to begin my career. After graduating in 1995, I realized that I really didn't know much of anything. A lot of my accumulated knowledge contradicted itself. For instance, if I have a client who suffers from headaches, should I spend a bunch of time doing neuromuscular therapy trying to extinguish trigger points that might be activating the pain process, or should I look at the structural components that might be creating a head-forward, rounded-shoulder posture? Perhaps the headache comes from some sort of vertebral misalignment or subtle craniosacral imbalance? Maybe an inactive muscle in the neck is creating instability, or could it be a faulty eye pattern? What if nothing physically has changed with my client, and the headaches are a result of an increased stress level? Given all those questions about just the subject of headaches, I knew I couldn't build a big enough toolbox of techniques to relieve every person's symptoms every time. But let's look at a few other questions I had as a new therapist. Should I follow the path of most resistance or least resistance when doing myofascial release? Should I try to massage and soften the tight side or stimulate the tissues that seem nonactive? Do I deliver deep myofascial alignment work (that might be painful) versus work that I know will feel good and settle the client into a parasympathetic state?

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