FADS TRENDS AND GIMMICKS
Here are some definitions:
A fad is any form of behavior that develops among a large population and is collectively followed with enthusiasm for some period, generally as a result of the behavior's being perceived as novel in some way. A fad is said to "catch on" when the number of people adopting it begins to increase rapidly. The behavior will normally fade quickly once the perception of novelty is gone.
1. tendency: a general tendency, movement, or direction 2. prevailing style: a current fashion or mode
In marketing language, a gimmick is a unique or quirky special feature that makes something "stand out" from its contemporaries. However, the special feature is typically thought to be of little relevance or use. Thus, a gimmick is a special feature for the sake of having a special feature
Using these meanings I find myself wondering on this first day of 2012. Last week I spent time bringing myself up to date exploring what others in the massage and bodywork field are targeting. The trend certainly seems to be that fascia is the explanation for just about every soft tissue issue and the target for bodywork methods. I believe there is validity in this trend and am excited about the Fascia Conference in Vancouver. However, in my explorations I also noticed that the idea of fascia and massage/ bodywork is leading to fads and even worse- gimmicks. Oh no— Please no! Why oh why do we do this? Just when some evidence based on research is beginning to explain some of the underlying mechanisms that massage may influence it gets mucked up with gimmicks and feels like a fad. Because many of my massage clients are athletes I find myself watching ESPN a lot. There is a segment on one of the shows called “COME ON MAN”. To get the meaning you have to say the phrase just right but I hope you get the idea.
The concepts of massage affecting connective tissues is not new
Taylor described connective tissue methods in his book in 1887. Check it out. http://books.google.ca/books?id=vlqBsuzSOiEC&dq=massage&pg=PP2#v=onepage&q&f=false
Dr. Oakley Smith, founded the science of Naprapathy in 1907 after developing a systematic treatment method of evaluating and healing damaged connective tissues.
In 1920, James B. Mennell described how manual methods stretched connective tissue, which affected tendons and scar tissue.
Elizabeth Dicke in Germany in 1929 described Connective Tissue Therapy (CTT) or Connective Tissue Massage (CTM), also known as Bindegewebs massage.
Ida P. Rolf, Ph.D. formalized structural Integration methods that work on the connective tissue (fascia) to release, realign and balance the whole body
Dr.. Chaitow has been discussing connective tissue and massage implications with me for over 20 years. Tom Myers has been teaching about myofascial based work for years.
It is not going to do the massage profession to get any more faddy (wonder if that is a word) or gimmicky. The human body has not changed very much is thousands of years and massage has been around since someone rubbed a hurt and it felt better. Massage helps people feel better and we are just beginning to unravel some of the reasons that it works. Massage creates mechanical forces that change the shape and pliability of soft tissue, squish fluids around and stimulate the nervous system and likely the endocrine system. You need to really understand anatomy and physiology to be a good massage therapist and you have to do a lot of massage sessions learning from each one to be a great massage therapist. An experienced teacher can help you learn efficiently and possibility bypass some of the trial and error learning by sharing what they know. Massage is not fancy, faddy, trendy or gimmicky . It is like good nutritious food- good selection of simple, minimally processes, nutritious, clean food with just a little sweet and a little salt and a little butter to top it off. You spoil it if you mess with it too much.
“COME ON- MAN”