Find Top 10 Best Align Massage Therapist Near Me
Knowing how to move, sit and stand properly can help you stay active and prevent broken bones and disability. Proper posture can also help to limit the amount of kyphosis, or forward curve of the upper back, that can result from broken bones in the spine.
One of the most important things about body mechanics and posture is alignment. Alignment refers to how the head, shoulders, spine, hips, knees and ankles relate and line up with each other. Proper alignment of the body puts less stress on the spine and helps you have good posture.
With pain and discomfort being a significant complaint among many massage clients, you may be looking for a massage modality that can help bring gentle pain relief and comfort.
The Alignment Techniques modality is designed to holistically help the body’s muscles and joints. Using it, you may bring more effective natural pain relief than with traditional massage techniques alone. Learn more about how to acquire the knowledge and training you need to bring this modality to your massage practice.
About Alignment Techniques
According to the Freedom From Pain Institute’s website, some muscles often become tense in response to stress, while others relax. This straining of the body’s muscles and skeletal system can be very painful. Since pain may be difficult to diagnose through objective testing, the true cause of discomfort may not be recognized during routine examinations. Alignment techniques help interrupt pain-causing patterns in order to restore pain-free living.
This painful type of stress response occurs along patterns that Alignment techniques therapists can understand and address. By learning how to use this modality, you can help the body correct these issues and bring pain relief to your clients.
To keep proper alignment, avoid the following positions or movements:
- Having a slumped, head-forward posture
- Bending forward from the waist
- Twisting of the spine to a point of strain
- Twisting the trunk and bending forward when doing activities such as coughing, sneezing, vacuuming or lifting
- Anything that requires you to reach far. An example is reaching up for an item on a high shelf, which also could cause you to lose your balance and fall.
Some exercises can do more harm than good. If you have osteoporosis or have had broken bones in the spine, you should avoid exercises that involve bending over from the waist.
How Alignment Techniques Work
Alignment techniques help remove pain and restore comfortable function, using guided stretches and therapeutic touch. By offering assistance to the body’s natural healing process, the therapist helps the client’s brain correct the underlying causes of pain and discomfort.
“It’s a full-body, neurological joint-mobilization that affects the neurology of the body,” said Paul Kelly, a certified Alignment Techniques instructor and owner of The Temple Human Performance Services in Knoxville, Tennessee. Kelly travels around the world teaching seminars with the developer of Alignment Techniques, Erik Dalton, Ph.D.
Alignment techniques offer results that are consistent and demonstrate powerful pain relief for clients with a variety of health issues. The focus, he claims, is on stopping pain and helping clients return to normal, pain-free lives.
“We focus on relieving the restriction first, then restoring performance,” Kelly said. “This is about trying to correct neurological patterning and correcting blockages to alleviate pain.”
Get the Training You Need
To become a Certified Therapist, coursework with Erik Dalton’s Freedom From Pain Institute or a certified trainer are required. After completing coursework, testing is required before you can attain certification. Only therapists who have received training in Erik Dalton’s methods from a certified trainer may use the Certified Therapist title.
These courses may satisfy massage continuing education requirements in your region. You should do your own research to find out if this training qualifies for continuing education credit, and if other coursework or licensure requirements apply in your state or local area.
Marketing to Clients
Since Alignment Techniques results are repeatable, you can get clients for life, said Kelly. It helps them therapists separate themselves into a pain-management model.
Kelly said that since pain management is very important to many clients and is often a significant motivation for seeking out massage therapy, Alignment techniques can increase your value to clients who are desperately searching for pain relief. For the therapist, this may mean referrals to new clients and the potential for explosive practice growth.
When marketing this technique, Kelly suggests that certified therapists emphasize their knowledge as posture-and-pain specialists. Using social media, therapists can reach an even larger audience and offer written articles and other marketing materials highlighting client experiences with Alignment techniques.
Benefits and Contraindications
Much of the research highlighting this modality’s benefits is anecdotal right now, but that is changing. Kelly reports interesting results through the Freedom From Pain Institute and his own practice. At conferences, Kelly learns of new supporting research every day.
Restrictions in the body are cross-linked, so it all points to neurology having an impact, he said. We change with the research.
While Alignment techniques can help pain in a variety of different areas of the body and have benefitted many clients, not every client should receive them, according to Kelly.
“If someone has major medical problems, they need to see a physician first,” he said. “If you’re a good therapist, there’s really very few problems with this therapy and it is very safe for most people.”
See What Alignment Techniques Can Do
This flexible therapy can be used to help with a variety of pain issues and can provide you with a career boost. By learning Alignment techniques, you will gain another powerful tool to help address clients’ pain and discomfort.