This is the first in a series about my journey writing textbooks as a reflection on past, present and future of Massage therapy. I realsized today the the textbook is 20 years old and as I work on the 6th edition getting better and better.
Secrets from Fritz. Mosby's Fundamentals of Therapeutic Massage
Copyright © 2013 by Mosby, an imprint of Elsevier Inc.2009, 2004, 2000, 1995
When I compare the first edition of this textbook to this fifth edition, it is apparent that the knowledge necessary to begin a massage therapy career has increased, yet the underlying fundamental principles remain—compassionate, beneficial application of touch to help people feel better.
As the author, my intent is to make reading this textbook an enjoyable learning experience; I hope my purpose is reflected in the conversational tone in which I have written the text. My personal conviction is that Mosby's Fundamentals of Therapeutic Massage effectively presents the information and reflects both the heart and the art of therapeutic massage. After all, no one cares how much you know until they know how much you care.
Since the first edition in 1995 I have emphasized critical thinking and clinical reasoning as the foundation of the text. Took a huge leap and moved to more fundamental language and explanations of massage moving away from specific forms and styles and supporting outcomes and the broad contest of massage from the very beginning, supported that massage is based on adaptation to unique client circumstances and based on generalized physiology based outcomes before this was popular.
The book has grown as massage has evolved and I have matured. The book may be 20 years old but my relationship with it is 25 years long. The first edition took me 2 years to write and 1 year to get into publication. A four part VHS series was produced to create moving demonstrations. I recall that the “contour drape” sequence was the gluts of many jokes, yet I just read a post on Facebook about it. It took the publisher-2 years to convince me to write the book. I have dyslexia ya know and was not computer literate at the time. The whole idea was way too big for me. I worked with the Mosby staff to find other authors but for a variety of reasons no one signed on so with lots of help from the Mosby staff I began the writing process. I used Shiela Sorrentino’s book Mosby’s Textbook for Nursing Assistants 1st edition (now in it’s 8th edition) as my model and realized from the beginning that health professions are more alike than different. I will always think of Dr. Sorrentino as a most important teacher even though we have never met.
Surprisingly (or not) the first edition of Fundamentals of Therapeutic Massage was not initially well received. I will let all speculate on the reasons. However, by the time the 2nd edition was released it had found it’s was into many massage schools and both the book and I have persisted, endured and evolved over the years. Professional academic publishing is not for the faint of heart. Before the 2ed was released I had to complete a BS degree. You all may be interested to know that as I was completing my basclors in Health Sciences at Central Michigan University I was granted permission to use the manuscript development of Mosby’s Essential Sciences for Therapeutic Massage as an independent study. It was reviewed by anatomy professors and I received 3 credit hours. How about that!
Peer review can be (and should be) a brutal, ego busting process. Peer review is frustrating but I have read and considered every comment from reviewers for all editions. The current and future editions of the textbook would not be as valid without reviewers. My most frustrating moments are when one reviewer just blasts and rips a piece of content and another reviewer thinks the same content is just wonderful. The textbooks first and second editions presented research for evidence informed practice before it was popular and explored benieth various methods, modalities and types to identify and present unified themes of how the application of mechanical forces using massage methods is the foundation of the benefit of massage.
By the time the 3rd edition came out I had completed my Masters Degree in a new format- hybrid learning using a combination of in- class and online learning. Ha. I remember a conversation with my ethics professor. He said to me ,” I am confident I could assist in negating a peace treaty in the Middle East but I find I am unable to do my dishes or make my bed.” He was brilliant and definitely on the autism spectrum. The course was very challenging and I will benefit from his uniqueness for a lifetime. That was quite a two year experience back in 2002 and 2003.
A lot happened between 3rd and 5th editions. I worked consistently providing massage and struggled during the economic downturn to keep my massage therapy school doors open. I had open heart surgery for the “widow maker” blockage a couple of weeks after the Pittsburgh Steelers won the Super Bowl in Detroit (2006). One year later my oldest son was killed by a distracted driver two weeks after he was married and my granddaughter was born 6 months later. I spent many days and nights caring for my granddaughter and rest of the family. I still have a pacifier in the trunk of my car. Ha. She called it her wysee. These days I still help raise my granddaughter and have been a Brownie leader for her Girl Scout troop. My daughter returned from the military and became a biology teacher in the public school system. She survived a terrible home invasion. The police never have found who broke in and shot up the house and terrorized her. My youngest son carries on my legacy as a massage therapist. He just completed a 4 year employment as the massage therapist (full time) with the Detroit Pistons. Prior to that he work in a spa, fitness center and with a chiropractor and has been a massage therapist for 10 years. He is one class away from finishing his Bachelors of Applied Science in Massage Therapy from Sienna Heights University. He is returning Health Enrichment Center as an instructor. My daughter now manages the massage school and keeps us all in line. I am working on the sixth edition of Fundamentals of Therapeutic Massage and both the kids are part of the team with proof reading and manuscript development. I am able to write about advancements in the massage profession that have been a focus for me for years that are now coming to fruition. I have learned to have patience and not aggravate too many people along the way. I found a little picture at a garage sale that I gave my Daughter. It says-I love you more today than yesterday-Yesterday you got on my nerves.
I am on sort of a sabbatical. I am limited in what I can do physically while I heal from eye surgeries to deal with glaucoma that will last all summer. I was only away from my massage clients 6 weeks after the heart surgery but this eye process will take about 10 weeks. I am scheduling surgeries around the Educational Congress in Minneapolis in July and will see many there at this landmark gathering and one of my visions for massage education. Even though my vision is really blurry and my brain a scatter with new input through my eyes, I can see clearly the hoped for future of massage therapy. I plan on a series of blogs featuring insight into the textbooks I have written and many of the inside jokes found throughout the books. I invite you to the journey.
From the forward ( 5th ed.)
“This is a really beautifully illustrated, well-thought-out and structured expansion of the previous editions of this book, with a host of new features, and the author and publishers are to be congratulated on producing it.”
Leon Chaitow, ND, DO
He has written the forward for each edition.