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Exactly what IS Remedial Massage????

It is easier to answer the question: What is the meaning of life?!! More later, here is my version first

My interpretation is simple. I am here to do my best to help relieve aches and pains and headaches, lengthen tight muscles and improve flexibility in as few visits as possible. It involves asking the right questions to find out what your problems are, before and after assessing, trying to get your symptoms of pain, tightness, aches etc from 10 when you walk in to 3 or below when you walk out, hopefully with a smile on your dial. If your problems are due to tight muscles and other soft tissues, I usually can achieve this goal. Problems arise if there is structural damage to muscles, tendons, ligaments, loss of cartilage, bulging discs etc.

One of the reasons, in my view, that Remedial Massage is yet to get more serious approval from the Federal Government, insurance companies, DVA etc is that it lacks a clear, precise definition.

Even though a thousand people get a Diploma of Remedial Massage each year and Health Funds give rebates for Remedial Massage, no one has been able to define it to me.

To me, Remedial Massage is about relieving aches, pains and headaches. It is targetted and focussed and may use a variety of techniques such as craniodural therapy, trigger point therapy, PNF Stretching etc.

Massage therapy, on the other hand, is less specific, generally is a full body massage, and is more of a maintenance, feel good massage which is good for the muscles, promotes lymphatic drainage and relaxation and reduces stress. Remedial massage requires considerably more skill and knowledge than massage therapy, so I am not a big fan of being called a massage therapist!!!

Here is the explanation of remedial massage according to

Medibank Private's definition of remedial massage

"Remedial massage is the systematic assessment and treatment of the muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissues of the body to assist in rehabilitation, pain and injury management.

It is performed to create favourable conditions for the body to return to normal health after injury and is defined by the premise that the treatment can reasonably reverse certain physical effects a patient may be presenting. If a patient has suffered a moderate injury resulting in structural pain and/or loss of function, loss of function, then remediation is required to reduce or eliminate pain and restore that function. Remedial massage is designed to balance muscle/soft tissue length, tension, tone which will in turn promote the return to normal joint/capsular/bone position; increase the flow of blood and lymph, particularly in the injured areas, thus removing blockages, damaged cells, scar tissue and adhesions resulting from injury."

A remedial therapist must have knowledge of anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology to determine where to treat patients. Their services must be based on best practice principles and before any remedial massage treatment begins, a thorough patient consultation and assessment is to be performed to ascertain the patient's current health status. If the patient is suitable for remedial massage and relying on the patient's feedback to identify the areas that require attention, the therapist can then apply the relevant and appropriate treatment.

Qualifications and professional organisations

In order to offer health fund rebates you must be a member of a professional organisation with a code of conduct. There are two main professional associations. I am a member of AAMT, Australian Association of Massage Therapists, now trading as Massage and Myotherapy Australia. I have three diplomas in Remedial Massage.

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