Massage & Bodywork

March/April 2012

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best practices BUSINESS SIDE | Q & ART | TABLE LESSONS | SAVVY SELF-CARE "Everything going well?" he asked. "The players really seem to like this, which is probably a good thing. Sometimes, athletes just need to be placated." "Placating?" I thought to myself. "Is that what I am doing?" I was too stunned to respond at that moment, but I knew I couldn't let the comment pass without addressing it. Gathering up my things, after I finished with the athletes, I happened to run into the trainer on my way out. "If you have a second, I'd like to share with you the methodology behind what I am doing with the players. Let's imagine that an athlete has pain in the anterior shoulder, for instance." "Like my left shoulder?" the trainer asked with interest. "Really?" I replied. "I'm curious, if I strength test your left anterior deltoid relative to your other shoulder, is the left deltoid weaker?" "You can test it, but I can tell you How Placated Do You Feel Now? By Douglas Nelson I have had the great fortune to collaborate with many excellent certified athletic trainers during my years working with collegiate and professional athletes. Over time, these trainers knew when to refer to me, and they understood which conditions respond favorably to soft-tissue therapy. This is why my experience with a new trainer a few weeks ago was so startling. During a momentary break from seeing athletes in rapid succession, the trainer popped in. right now it is significantly weaker than the right deltoid. I have been doing strengthening exercises, but it doesn't get stronger and the pain seems to increase after exercise." Just to double check, I did resistive testing on the left anterior deltoid and found it significantly weaker than the right. The left deltoid also had mild pain during contraction as well. "Are you familiar with trigger points?" I asked the trainer. "Sure," he said. "They are points that refer pain to other parts of the body." "That's true, but only part of the story," I answered. "It is more accurate to say that trigger points refer sensation, rather than pain. Sometimes trigger points mimic nerve entrapment, a feeling of itching, or even nausea. More commonly, trigger Celebrate ABMP's 25th anniversary and you may win a refund on your membership. 33

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