I was prepared to do a massage after I graduated from massage school, but I can’t say that I was prepared to be a massage therapist. I figured that I’d gain everything I needed as I got more experience. But that wasn’t necessarily the case. In fact, 5 years after graduation I found myself an injury away from having to find a new job. I was worried and feeling lost. But then on a cold October day, Xentho (who liked to be called “X”) mysteriously showed up at my massage room door looking for work.
X was a big man with a big heart who didn’t mince words. He had amazing hands and used his big elbow as if it were a fine-tuned thumb.
“Mark,” he would say, “you’re working too hard. Stick your elbow in there.” Then he would show me what he meant. He would lean into the person on the table. Then to emphasize how little strain it was on his body, he would close his eyes, pretending to go to sleep. (I think he actually did sometimes.) For a year or so we traded massages and experimented with new approaches to pain relief massage and new ways to save our bodies. It was a time of incredible learning and discovery.
Then one day my friend disappeared, just as mysteriously as he had appeared. I was sad…but I was also inspired. Now I got it. I finally understood what mattered most and what was missing in my massage life: reliable real-world knowledge.
Since the day X left, it has been my mission to research, experiment with and figure out ways to get the best results with pain relief massage, to minimize/eliminate MT injuries/pain conditions, and to create the most opportunities for success. It’s an honor and privilege to share this information with you.
I graduated from massage school in 1992 and was certified in St. John’s neuromuscular therapy three years later. In 1997, I opened my first massage office and got bitten by the entrepreneur bug. A couple of years after that, my wife, Lisa, and I opened The Massage Institute, a massage business and our lab for developing CE courses. I maintain a private massage practice in Phoenixville, PA. Lisa and I recently opened PressurePerfect(TM) Massage, a massage business based on conscious capitalism. The PressurePerfect(TM) location is also where we teach our CE classes and I coach massage therapists.
In my spare time I write about massage and other health and wellness topics. Some publications that I’ve written for include Massage & Bodywork Magazine, Massage Magazine, Philadelphia Inquirer, Buffalo News, Main Line Times, Running Times Magazine, Spirituality & Health, and Well Being Journal.
On this blog I write about things that can have an immediate and positive impact on the lives of MTs.
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