1) You graduate with the skills to get a job right out of school. Massage therapy studies involve a lot of practical and hands-on training so by the time students graduate, they feel confident enough in their skills and have enough training to start working right away.
2) Massage therapists are licensed professionals. To become a licensed therapist you must complete a certificate program as well as hundreds of practical hours. This higher degree of requirements has created a greater level of respect for this profession.
3) Having the opportunity to work in exciting and exotic locations. Tourist spots and cruise ships are always hiring massage therapists for their spas. As well beach resorts are always looking for massage therapists which gives you the amazing opportunity to vacation while at work.
4) You can set your own work hours. Since most massage therapists are self-employed, they are able to set appointments based off their own schedule which can be very useful.
5) Your work environment is relaxing. Often massage therapists are surrounded with a great ambiance because they want to make sure their clients are relaxed and in a better state of mind after their massage. This means that the massage therapist themselves also get to enjoy this ambiance.
6) You get the satisfaction of helping others. Massage therapists offer invaluable service to people who are in pain, recovering from injuries or experiencing stress. Massage therapy speeds up healing processes and can also help with restoring emotional balance.
7) Your clients will always look forward to seeing you. Going to your massage therapist is associated with positive feelings and a good experience unlike going to see your doctor or dentist.
8) You are always physically active at work. Massage therapists work on their feet and engage their entire body when giving a massage. Since the nature of the work is physically demanding, as a result you end up in great shape.
9) In high demand in the workforce. As the value of licensed massage therapists increases, it has been predicted that the job demand is supposed to grow considerably in the next decade. New massage therapy jobs are being created constantly in nursing homes and hospitals.
10) Eventually you can become your own boss. Many massage therapists work out of their own homes or travel to client's houses. Some are able to establish their own clinics and employ other massage therapists as well.
*Source: Fremont College*
In our every day lives, so many little things we do can cause back pain and for the most part we never manage to catch and change our bad habits. The following list will give you a good overview of all the little bad habits that most of us have which can eventually cause us to encounter not so pleasant backaches.
1) Do you have a long commute? Maybe your drive from home to work or home to school causes you to spend a lot of time behind the steering wheel. Chiropractors and doctors mention that it is very important to pay attention to your posture when you are driving. Make sure you are sitting at a 90 degrees angle to the steering wheel and you are not leaning back too much that you have to stretch your arms or legs out. As well avoid slumping posture which will cause neck and back pain.
2) Sitting behind a desk all day is one of the biggest causes of back pain. Sitting puts 40% more pressure on your spine than standing. Sitting with good posture and taking regular stretch breaks is often a key solution but it is also a solution that most people don't have time for. Another solution to help your back is to try and sit at a 135 degree angle from time to time. So this means to lean back on your chair; this position puts the least pressure on your spinal disks.
3) When you have to reach a deadline and you are experiencing chronic or acute stress; this stress can directly trigger your back pain. Often times when we are stressed, all of our body's muscles remain in a constantly clenched/ flexed position. An easy solution to this is to simply realize that you are stressed out and find ways to release your stress and relax throughout the day. Many find exercise to be a great stress reliever.
4) Prioritize the gym. Many people assume that they need to lie down and remain inactive when they have back pain. Meanwhile many studies show that people with back pain can greatly benefit from being active and going to the gym or going for frequent walks.
5) Mattresses. If your mattress is very old, you are very likely to have back pain. According to the National Sleep Foundation, you must replace your mattress every 7 to 10 years but many suggest that you go no longer than 5 to 7 years before replacing your mattress.
6) Although all types of exercise help relieve back pain, yoga tends to be the best. Yoga is the fastest exercise to ease lower back pain.
7) Doing crunches to strengthen your core and therefore protect your back is a very big misconception. It is true that having a strong core protects your back but doing crunches is not great for your back and the continuous motion forces the spine to curve forward in a C-shape. Do crunches slowly, with proper form and in moderate amounts by including them in a broader core workout.
8) This may come as a surprise but your diet can affect your back. Eating healthy foods is not only good for your heart and weight but your back as well. Having clogged arteries due to high cholestrol can cause less efficient blood circulation which leads to an inability to bring nutrients to the spine and brain. Not receiving proper nutrients due to improper circulation can cause inflammation which ultimately leads to pain.
9) Many of us suffer from carrying all our belongings in our purse. Having a very heavy bag may cause back damage that is as severe as damage from a sports injury. To avoid this, always carry the lightest bag possible and alternate which shoulder you carry your purse on every day.
10) A deep love for high heels or flip flops. Both of these shoes cause your foot to be unstable and this leads to back pain. High heels force you to arch your back and make your back muscles work harder. Flip flops on the other hand cause your feet to slide from side to side leading to an uneven distribution of your body weight, ultimately causing back pain. Avoid walking long distances in your trendy footwear.
*Sources: www.msn.com -Health & Fitness*
As you may know, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture practice have been regulated in Ontario since April 2013. Since then, the licensing governing body of this profession (CTCMPAO) has issued more than 2000 licenses. The introduced licenses are R.Ac (Registered Acupuncturist) and R.TCM.P (Registered Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner). The majority of current practitioners have obtained their license via the Grandparenting procedure which is issuing license based on the past experience of practitioners. The deadline of applying for Grandparenting license (for eligible applicants) is Mar 31, 2014. After this deadline, you will only be able to obtain these licenses through studying the program and passing the board exams of CTCMPAO.
We have performed a study on a random sample of health practitioners in the GTA to compare the average annual income of practitioners who have either R.Ac or R.TCM.P license with the other practitioners without these licenses. Our goal was to provide a more clear vision for new students or current practitioners who are interested in learning Acupuncture and/or TCM.
Groups of target study:
1. R.Ac or R.TCM.P health practitioners who have received license since April 2013 (n=67).
2. Health practitioners with only one regulated license:
- RMTs (n=113)
- Chiropractors (n=23)
- Physiotherapists (n=42)
3. Health practitioners who have one regulated license + An Acupuncture Certificate*
- RMTs + Acupuncture Certificate (n=53)
- Chiropractors + Acupuncture Certificate (n=22)
- Physiotherapists + Acupuncture Certificate (n=18)
* Practitioners with Certificate are able to apply Acupuncture needling as a modality mixed with their current practice; however they are not able to bill clients or insurance companies separately for Acupuncture or TCM services.
4. Health practitioners who have one regulated license + R.Ac or R.TCM.P
- RMTs + R.Ac or R.TCM.P (n=49)
- Chiropractors + R.Ac or R.TCM.P (n=18)
- Physiotherapists + R.Ac or R.TCM.P (n=12)
Comparing number of Acupuncturists (or TCM practitioners)
Before and after April 2013:
* Source: Estimation based on the number practitioners previously working with different private Acupuncture associations before April 2013.
** Source: CTCMPAO website (the number of registered practitioners as of March 2014)
According to the American Pain Association, an estimated 86 million Americans suffer from chronic pain. Chronic pain can be characterized by persistent pain signals that are repeatedly fired from the nervous system, and they can last from weeks to years. While it is common that chronic pain is the result of a previous accident or condition, it can also occur with no apparent incident, and is a frequent problem for older adults. As with most prevalent and life-affecting afflictions, there is a wide variety of solutions available; from over-the-counter medication to prescription drugs, chronic pain is dealt with daily in a variety of ways. However, traditional Chinese medicine may have two more effective means of relief to offer.
Both Chinese acupuncture and massage therapy are regularly used to alleviate chronic pain. There is some contention in the field of Oriental medicine as to which practice is more beneficial. According to the British Medical Journal, a recent study showed acupuncture to provide greater short-term pain relief and better range of motion than traditional massage. The study consisted of 177 patients with chronic neck pain, all of whom were randomly assigned to treatments of acupuncture, massage, or placebo practices.
In their results, the researchers stated that, “individuals treated with acupuncture reported greater reductions in pain both immediately after the first and last treatments, and one week after the last treatment, than those treated with massage.” In this study, acupuncture was deemed especially more effective in regard to pain caused by motion. The conclusion of the British Medical Journal was a statement that, “…acupuncture is a safe form of treatment for people with chronic neck pain and offers clear clinical advantages over conventional massage in the reduction of pain and improvement of mobility. Acupuncture was most effective in people who had had pain for over five years and in those with the myofascial pain syndrome.” Pain relief was also varied between the patients that were skeptical, versus those that were positive about the study’s possible results.
While acupuncture is believed by many to provide long-term relief for chronic pain, massage therapy also has a good deal of staunch believers. The Archives of Internal Medicine conducted a randomized trial comparing traditional Chinese medical acupuncture, therapeutic massage, and self-care education for chronic low back pain. This study included 262 patients between the ages of 20 and 70 with persistent back pain, and consisted of 10 weeks of the various treatments. The results state that, “Therapeutic massage was effective for persistent low back pain, apparently providing long-lasting benefits,” and that traditional Chinese acupuncture was “relatively ineffective.” The Touch Research Institute has conducted over 90 clinical studies on the beneficial effects of massage therapy. These studies have proven massage therapy’s effectiveness in the relief of not only chronic pain, but also juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, labor pain, fibromyalgia, and back pain.
Thankfully, the millions of sufferers of chronic pain do not have to choose between acupuncture or massage therapy for their relief. Both practices have obvious benefits and continuous business with returning clients, which is perhaps the most convincing proof of their success. While common, chronic pain should not be one of the most accepted ailments in the world, particularly when there are so many treatment options. By utilizing the resources available in traditional Chinese medicine, whether acupuncture or massage therapy, people can greatly improve their daily lives and well-being.