Meghan Welcome to this episode of Jing TV! where we’re looking at massage myths and the question of contraindications. Rachel So today we’re going to be talking about a very important topic that of contraindications. I have a particular interest in this topic because I wrote an article about it that you can find on the Jing website.jingmassage. M It’s a really good article. R I think contraindications are interesting what we’ve found from our time in the UK is that they are very differently taught in the UK than they are in the US.
Do you wanna talk a bit about how they’re taught in the US M First of all the terminology can be different, so we looked at the idea of red flags. Looking at contraindications and that list of contraindications as really something to discuss with your clients, so things that are flagged up, so things like if they have heart disease or they’re in the first trimester of their pregnancy or they’ve had cancer and are in remission or are living with cancer or compromised immune conditions such as HIV. All of these things that I see.
A lot of and have heard a lot of therapists say these are contraindications to massage i.e. a no go zone, certainly in my education in the states it wasn’t a no go zone, it was an area to be aware of. R Be aware of, yeah. M Something to discuss. Certainly at Jing we’ve adopted that so sometimes I say maybe something a bit controversial which is that there is no such things as a contraindication whatsoever, you can always touch somebody. Would you agree Fairweather R I do, I think that there’s an excellent article by someone called Mitchell.
Massage Myths Contraindications
Batavia in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies that I mention in the article that I wrote and he or she, not sure if they’re a man or a woman, did a piece of research where they actually looked at the various contraindications to massage in different textbooks and found that not only a they were often contradicting themselves, so there was no clear list of contraindications but b there was often no scientific backup for any of those contraindications and I think a classic example is massage and cancer. I.
Know that in the UK people are still taught that massage is absolutely contraindicated for cancer. M Which is insane! R Which is insane. M Seeing the amount of hospice care where massage therapists are offering, also Macmillan Trust and lots of more progressive organisations dealing with people living with cancer really advocating. R This is nothing new. M No! R Massage therapists have been working with cancer for 20 odd years. M At least, at least. R There’s loads of books written about it, it has very positive effects, research has backed that.
Up. M Both psychologically and physically and psychologically is just as important really especially for people living with long term illnesses. R People are still being taught that they shouldn’t massage anybody with cancer. M People still have the idea that they can spread it more and that’s really really antiquated thinking. Another example which is always really interesting is massage in the first trimester of pregnancy. R Indeed. M What we talk about at Jing and what we talk about in the classes is that we teach people at Jing that.
Massage in the first trimester is incredibly safe, it’s been exercised and used in many cultures for many many years about actually keeping the foetus safe and the woman in a good healthy space. But what’s happened is our society has become very litigious. R Yep. M Obviously those of you who know a bit about pregnancy know that a miscarriage is most likely in the first trimester and wouldn’t necessarily be caused by massage therapy but it might happen concurrently and so massage therapists are cautioned around working with.
Women in the first trimester that they don’t know well just because human nature is if something goes bad it’s really hard to look at ourselves, it’s always easier to blame someone else. So it’s more about that, rather than you actually causing. R Again I think there is no evidence to back up that giving a massage within the first trimester can cause miscarriage. I think that’s something to be aware of. I think the other big thing to realise is, is that a lot of the contraindications that we are all taught actually apply to Swedish massage.
That’s true. Swedish massage as we know is not the only form of massage treatment, so if you do Amma or acupressure based techniques or trigger point or myofascial release, stretching, there’s so many things you can do, even energy work. What we usually say is there is usually something that you can do and we’re much more into people being educated about contraindications to think Why is this contraindicated What shouldn’t I do and why Then to make an informed decision about it, we’re a very big fan of the decision tree approach, Tracy Walton does.
A great book out on that, where you just actually making informed decisions about what to treat and what not to treat, rather than getting this blanket list do not treat ever. Frankly you’d never have a massage practice. M No, absolutely, you’d have nobody left to work. It just thinking about using common sense, going back and looking at those contraindications sheets and thinking OK, right, so if somebody has diabetes or somebody has a heart condition or somebody has an inflamed sight what do I need to know about that, what would be safe practice around.
That and what can I offer them differently. We really feel like there’s always something, which is obviously why we teach so many different courses at the Jing Institute, you can come to see us in Brighton, we actually also teach all over the UK, you can look us up in London, Edinburgh, loads of different places. You can find all the courses on.jingmassage And we do a great working with cancer course and simple lymphatic drainage, so come on that if you’re scared. M And table Thai. Find us on Twitter and Facebook JingInstitute.