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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the difference between manual therapies (bodywork) & massage??
  • Is bodywork important to preventative health care?
  • What will a session be like?
  • How long is a treatment?
  • What should I wear?
  • What should I do after a treatment?
  • Should I forego other treatments, like chiropractic or massage?
  • What sort of results should I expect?
  • Why can't I make an appointment on-line?

    Q:   What is the difference between manual therapies (bodywork) & massage??

    A:    Massage targets the muscles for relaxation. Bodywork works with muscles, but also targets connective tissues (fascia), organs, and bones for structural and functional change through various techniques or “modalities” (systems of techniques) of manipulation.  Bodywork is not necessarily relaxing and can sometimes be intense. I often have patients move into different positions on the table during a session and perform different movements as part of their treatment.


    Q:  Is manual bodywork important to preventative health care?

    A:  Of course. Maintaining healthy tissues keeps you in balance. Manual therapies can have varying effects depending on which ones are used, but they always promote optimal health of the tissues. Benefits may include increasing circulation of blood flow and lymph flow, reducing edema, lessening tension and promoting proper alignment. Only when tissues are in their proper places--no tendons, tubules or nerves being pinched or twisted--can they function optimally. Manual therapies can prevent congestion and adhesions before they form and treat what has already formed but is not yet showing symptoms. Many people use manual therapies as part of their health care regimen.


    Q:  What will a session be like?

    A:  You likely will be asked to move into various positions during your treatment session and will perform movements or engage muscles in order for me to assess or treat your condition. You may be asked to partially disrobe in order for me to gain better access to your parts.

    I generally start the treatment in the area of your greatest concern (ie: the abdomen, if you’re complaining of digestive issues) and then follow the tissues, depending on what I find. Usually I’m following lines of tension; occasionally I find areas that are slack.  So, while I am attentive to your main complaint, I also address the way the rest of your body has adapted to your misalignment or dysfunction so that the transformation effected in your body will be more complete and longer lasting. This is why you may come in complaining about your stomach and I can end up spending significant time on your shoulder.

    I use many modalities within a treatment session. A patient may experience Chi Nei Tsang abdominal massage, visceral manipulation, cranio-sacral therapy, myo-fascial release, trigger point therapy and acupuncture in a single session. Your next session could be a very different combination of modalities or techniques, depending on how your body is presenting. I call my unique way of working “BodyBraille”.  My hands read your body’s narrative and manipulate the plot.


    Q:  How long is a treatment?

    A:  An hour and a half.  Since most of my patients have complex issues, one hour has not been long enough. I do offer 45-minute sessions of single-modality treatments for patients who either want to try out a modality (system of techniques) or who want to have a “tune up” that is easily addressed by a single modality. But with most cases, the full treatment of BodyBraille is necessary to effect greatest change.


    Q:  What should I wear?

    A:   Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing, if you can. It’s best if pant legs and sleeves can be rolled up and the pant’s waist can be pushed or rolled down.  However, be prepared that I may ask you to partially disrobe. Modesty is maintained as much as possible.


    Q:  What should I do after a treatment?

    A:   While much of the work of the treatment is done on the table, some of the transformative process will continue in the week afterward. Drink lots of water and take a long walk after your treatment. Hydration is important for general health and walking will help integrate the work done in the treatment. As your body moves in concert, all of the parts have to learn new ways of being together. Walk for at least ½ hour every day.


    Q:  Should I forego other treatments, like chiropractic or massage?

    A:   Absolutely not!  Any and all bodywork, massage or other treatment options will only enhance the integration of the bodywork we do. Sometimes you may want to make sure you wait a day or two so as not to overwhelm the tissues, but you need not forego other treatments. 

    Sometimes I have patients who think they should only do one type of treatment at a time “otherwise I won’t know which one worked”.  But do you really need to know? If the desired outcome is to get results, then it’s likely that you’ll need to use more than one approach to get them. Our bodies are complex and are subject to many forces and dynamics every day. It’s unlikely that any one approach will provide the results that you desire. I encourage you to continue any exercise programs, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, etc that you have used in the past.


    Q:  What sort of results should I expect?

    A:   Transformation is a process and happens over time. However, you should notice some change in your main symptom(s) with each treatment.

    Bodywork, like all therapies that involve the body, is a re-education process. Your body has learned a way of being in response to something in your environment. Over time that response becomes an established pathology.  Now your body needs to learn a new way of being.  Education happens in steps, over time.  I nudge your body toward that ideal, but it will want to return to what is familiar. It takes repeated nudging toward that ideal in order to establish real change. And, of course, the longer you've had a condition, the longer it will take to re-establish normal.

    I have considered requiring patients to sign up for three appointments within 10 days so as to jump start transformation and prevent individuals from coming in for one or two appointments and saying, “I tried it….”  when really they haven’t.  Instead, for now, I’m trusting that patients will listen to their bodies, I’m realizing that many patients pursue multiple avenues of healing, and I’m confident that the value of BodyBraille will prove compelling.  I do encourage several treatments early on in your process in order to push toward change.


    Q:    Why can’t I make an appointment on-line?

    A:    I’ve tried on-line scheduling programs in the past and I found that people generally had trouble using them. I’d get their phone call after they experienced much frustration, having just wasted their valuable time trying to figure it out. 

    I also find that patients often have questions or want to discuss the nature of their problems with me before making an initial appointment.  I like this in-person scheduling much better for its ease, for the connection it offers us before the treatment, and for the flexibility it gives us in scheduling.

    To make an appointment, please call me and leave a message with your phone number.  I will return your call within 24 hours, usually in the late evening unless you request another time more convenient for you.