Jeff Kittner is a fourth term RMT student here with us at CCMH. When he’s not spending time in class learning or preparing for his upcoming board exams, he is either managing his own small business or teaching yoga. We had a chance to chat with Jeff about his experience at CCMH, his ideal job and why, and what’s next for him after graduation.
Tell me a little bit about your time so far at CCMH.
I recently completed my third term in school. One more term of learning, then Board exams and then I will graduate! I was a little nervous about the Board exams earlier this semester, but lately, I’ve been hearing good things about how well prepared CCMH students are from alumni.
What else do you do outside of the classroom?
Before CCMH, I started an organization in 2005 called Wolf Den Expeditions that I still manage. We conduct all inclusive trips in the Canadian wilderness, providing food, shelter and a guide for our clients.
Wow! How do you manage being a student and running your own business?
Wolf Den is a small business with other contract workers so it allows for some flexibility, which I greatly appreciate. I work from home as a stay at home dad while juggling school and family. I am also a certified ORCKA canoeing instructor and a yoga instructor.
What led you to yoga?
I initially had a lower back issue that bothered me for a long time, and I started practicing yoga. I’ve been teaching yoga for seven or eight years now.
When I had been teaching for about five years, I stumbled onto a three-day course run by an organization called The Jaguar Path that inspired me and made me want to help others in pain as well. It turned out that the three-day course was actually part of a nine-month program that teaches people to become healers.
Can you tell me about your time at The Jaguar Path? Sounds like an interesting nine months!
Learning with The Jaguar Path was an amazing experience. I would go to Massachusetts for one weekend a month, for nine months. Then I got to go to Peru and even practice in the Indies and the Amazon jungle with Shamans. Not surprisingly, this accelerated my learning process a lot.
With all the learning you’ve done so far, why CCMH?
CCMH has gotten me one step closer to what I actually want to do, which is healing with touch, energy, emotion and, of course, muscles. My intuition and gut feeling has always been important to me. I think combining this with the scientific and analytical approach I’ve learned at CCMH will allow me to be a better healer.
So what would be your ideal job and why?
So far in my learning experience, I’ve learned that emotions can impact the body in ways that may not be able to be logically explained. It’s the reason why stress and heart disease are closely linked, even though you can’t physically see stress. When I think about the ideal job, one of the most important things I always consider is the emotional impact of a person’s job on their body. I believe that fulfillment is often a domino effect and my ideal workplace will have to be open to this way of thinking. To be honest, I am very curious to see where I’ll end up! I think it would be great to work with a Naturopath or an Osteopath because of the holistic approach of both types of careers.
What’s next for you, Jeff?
I would like to learn more about Anatomy. I started learning and it wasn’t hard at first but then there was more details, latin terminologies and just a lot of content in a short period of time. When I learn, I try to compartmentalize things. With Anatomy, I started with the chambers of the heart, then the vessels and then the neurological components. As of right now, I’ve had to put that and my own spiritual interests aside. I wanted to immerse myself into student life at CCMH as much as I could and I know that ultimately I will be a better healer for it. I can’t wait to assess just how much I’ve learned when I graduate.
Is there any advice you would like to give to current and prospective CCMH students?
My advice to current and future students is to embrace your breaks during the day. CCMH is an intense program but it’s worth it. So go outside during your breaks instead of staying inside where there is a lot of stress and energy. It is important to be able to reset and you can only do that by appreciating the bigger world outside. Go outside, put your feet on the ground, breathe in the fresh air and look at the trees around you. Reset!
That really is great advice, Jeff! Thank you for taking the time to speak with us and share your CCMH experiences. Looking forward to watching you grow as a Registered Massage Therapist in the future.
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