Eastern Influences on Western Massage Therapies

Eastern Influences on Western Massage Therapies

As an RMT there are many techniques you will learn in order to provide the best treatment plan for your patients. A growing interest in Eastern massage techniques is influencing the treatments applied by Western RMT’s working much to the benefit of patients.

Tui Na – Chinese Medical Massage

In China, Tui Na is found to be so effective that patients can be found lined up around the block to receive treatments at the most reputable hospitals and clinics. Tui Na dates back as far as 2700 B.C. and because of its effectiveness and popularity Chinese hospitals have entire departments dedicated to the treatment.  Tui Na is in fact one of the four sisters of traditional Chinese medicine which features acupuncture,  herbal remedies and qigong, a style of breathing and exercises. Tui Na actually combines the theories behind acupuncture using acupressure points with massage techniques such as tapping, kneading, pulling and friction. It is a rather intense combination far more rigorous and physical than a Swedish massage.

Best Applications for Tui Na and Eastern Techniques

Due to the diversity and effectiveness of Tui Na and other Eastern techniques many RMT’s find it very effective to add the skills to their modalities as it has been proven effective especially in focusing on specific health issues including:

  • Arthritis
  • Sciatica
  • Joint pain
  • Muscle spasms
  • Back, neck and shoulder pain

The focus of Tui Na much like many Eastern approaches looks to the energies from the body. It can also be used to treat migraine headaches, constipation and stress related issues such as insomnia.

Complementary Approach to Massage

Discovering ways to use techniques such as Tui Na and the theory involving channels, stagnation and energy flow allows you to broaden your treatment and further develop your understanding of the Eastern perception of how the body must be treated to achieve overall health and wellness. Using palpation techniques on the channels as well as applying the basics of acupuncture and acupressure all work together to provide a complementary approach between Eastern and Western techniques. You may find that when compared to Western techniques, modern Eastern Tui Na actually seems to comprise more of physical therapy and chiropractic techniques combined with acupressure than more traditional modes of massage such as Shiatsu.

As an RMT it is important to maintain a close watch on growing trends and effective techniques in order to remain successful. Your clientele will continue to grow if you choose the right modalities that will provide the most in demand and effective techniques. Finding courses that suit your needs and meet the demands of your clients will help secure you a successful career as an RMT.


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