Several of you have asked me recently what the difference between a massage therapist and a natural health practitioner practicing naturopathic bodywork is. This month’s post is all about what the differences are and what you can expect in a bodywork session with me.
Let me begin by saying massage is a form of bodywork but not all bodywork is massage. Bodywork encompasses things like acupuncture, acupressure, chiropractic care, massage, reiki, craniosacral therapy, light healing touch, energy work, and many other forms of working on the body (and sometimes off).
A massage therapist is a bodyworker who has been trained and licensed (at least in Michigan) to practice massage therapy. Seems fairly simple, right? It is, and it isn’t. Massage therapists have been specifically trained in various massage techniques and bodywork protocols. In general, these are all on the body (as opposed to above it or off it working in the auric field). Variations of massage you can expect from a licensed massage therapist include:
- General relaxation massage
- Swedish massage
- Deep tissue massage
- Chair massage
- Myofascial release
- Posture work and positional
- Trigger point therapy/massage
- Lymph drain (often)
- Reflexology (often)
- Visceral massage (specialized form)
- And others…
Licensed Massage Therapists in Michigan have had 500 hours of classwork work and have passed a state examination. Additionally, they are fingerprinted and have been background checked.
This is not what I am, nor do I plan to become a licensed massage therapist. Why? Because my passion lies in the integrative practice of naturopathy.
So what can I offer in the realm of bodywork?
First, I do not offer massage. I do not practice general relaxation massage (though I am trained in how to). I may incorporate some aspects of it into a bodywork session, but I also include many more aspects of holistic health to address the whole person, not just the physical body.
I am trained in the following forms of bodywork at present:
- Chair Massage (I usually integrate this into my consultation work)
- Swedish Massage (this is only assimilated into other bodywork)
- Lymph Drain
- Infant Massage (and I teach mommies and daddies how to do this during a session)
- Pregnancy Bodywork
- Reflexology (both of hands and feet)
- Light Healing Touch
- Polarity Therapy
- Magnet Therapy
- Sound and Color Therapy
- Meridian work
- Craniosacral Therapy
- Emotional Release
- Raindrop Therapy
- Flower Remedies (sometimes I will use these on the body while I work)
- Neural Organization Technique (N.O.T.)
- And more…
However, I am not limited to just forms of bodywork. I am able to also offer things like:
- Essential Oils
- Flower Remedies
- Amino Acids
- Vaccine information
- Fertility Help
- Healthy Baby Education
- And more…
As you can see, a naturopathic bodyworker offers many more modalities beyond a simple massage to help you on your path to wellness.
Also, don’t forget I am also a trained opera singer which gives my sound work another level of power!
If you need help finding your way to health, don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment today.