As a massage school owner and a massage therapist I stay on top of the laws for the State of New Jersey as well as our ethics and the science behind our beautiful healing art. I follow a broad national and sometimes International network of massage school educators that all stay on top of the best practices – the current national best practices – of our beautiful healing profession. I am not in full agreement with a letter recently sent to the NJ state board massage from a therapist who represents a group of NJ LMT’s that feel it’s not safe anytime soon for us to reopen massage therapy and that massage therapists should not be going back to work any time soon.
I feel LMT’S need to stick together as compassionate healing artists and find a way back into our profession.
Over the last couple of months of being in Quarantine, and teaching my classes through Zoom distance learning, I have done a lot of research about how we can really be reopening sooner rather than later, safely and with science behind us. I’m happy to share that information with LMT’s because I believe strongly that we need to stick together, treat each other with respect and dignity and grace, and have a collective voice to present to our New Jersey Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy in Newark.
What I have found in speaking to a lot of LMT’s over the last couple of weeks is that there is a definite polarity happening, and that is not going to be good for our massage profession moving forward.
I have learned through teaching so many things throughout my entire adult life that human beings are driven and live from only 1 of 2 emotions: love or fear. I choose love. Those that are fearful to return to the profession have every right to feel the way they do but they don’t have the right to prevent anyone else from moving forward once the state allows us to and we choose to of our own volition.
As LMT’s, we always have had the right to refuse service to anyone except discrimination. I can recount many, many, many cases where you have the right to refuse service because it is contraindicated.
One of the myths that has been circulating is that massage therapy causes strokes, heart attacks, blood clots and more, which is simply not so. We need to know our clients pathologies and comorbidities in advance – do a full health history – which we should be learning from an enhanced client intake session – 1st over the phone, and then again when clients arrive for their service. We can add many levels of screening for our clients to be certain that we want to actually provide service to those for which it is indicated, of course with all the necessary Covid-19 warranted precautions, moving forward.
There are a tremendous number of massage modalities that we can use with clients to keep ourselves and our clients safe and I’m happy to share all that knowledge.
I believe licensed massage therapists are not only healing artists but medical professionals. We need to behave professionally. We must do our research. We need to have current knowledge. We need to remain compassionate. We also need to realize that we are entering the unknown, so those of us who are not afraid to move forward – with caution and care – can find the solutions. Lets come together with our peers who feel the same way. Let’s find a way forward.