What does "Integrative Bodywork" include?
Integrative Bodywork describes my unique approach (not a trademarked term). Integrative refers to the desired effect of our work together, whether using somatic or manual therapy. It's an active process, enhancing fluidity, communication, movement among the body's differentiated systems, toward a healthy whole organism. Bodywork is an umbrella term that encompasses massage, craniosacral, movement education, and other modalities.
How often should I schedule?
Scheduling same day, same time, every week or two helps us develop our relationship. You'll discover that with regular contact, your new physiological balance stays on course. This is especially important if you want to change a long-held pattern.
Just as important, do allow at least a few days between other types of therapy, so your body can process and integrate.
What do you need to know about me?
Our work together may be directed by a more global view. Your health history is important, of course. But I'll be most interested in how you are doing now, and what you hope for, from this session today, or big picture. Your primary complaint (--- is it physical, or a life situation?) may be what got you here. How long has it bothered you? How severe? Is it related to an event, or to other symptoms? What helps, even a little bit? Who are the helpers in your life, people you can trust? What do you enjoy?
What should I wear?
Comfortable clothing is appropriate for any session.
For postural assessments (as with manual therapy), T-shirt and shorts are fine. For visceral work, please wear gym shorts, and a loose top if female, as contact with skin of the torso is required.
Massage therapy clients may choose to disrobe so that lotion may be used; professional draping will be followed at all times.
Do you offer "deep tissue" massage?
As part of a massage session, I will focus on targeted pressure and fascial release for structural balancing, strength and flexibility. The term "deep tissue" can be confusing, as it doesn't always require deep pressure. My certification in trigger-point-based Neuromuscular Therapy (St John) deeply informs my current work. However in my experience since 1998, gentle techniques are often more effective in changing the body's holding patterns.
What ethical guidelines do you follow?
A national level professional organization, Assoc. Bodyworkers and Massage Professionals, publishes ethical guidelines at abmp.com. I have been a member since 1991.
My office policies on confidentiality, privacy, and safety reflect a healthy respect for client boundaries. For example, I may begin the first session with a new client by stating that touch is optional in my practice. Clients may always remain fully clothed. Clients requesting massage, if unclothed, will be draped appropriately. Sexual contact is not a part of professional massage therapy.
What advice might you have for someone new to this work?
Be gentle with yourself!
Take time to explore with curiosity.
Ask yourself, What's OK now, and what do I want to be different, or better?
How does your body let you know when something feels better?
You don't have to choose the "right method" of healing. Healing happens best in the container of a relationship.
Seek out people whose support boosts your physiology.
Don't rush into trying many different interventions at the same time.
Allowing time and space can be key to integrating changes: Small bites!