Modalities M-N

Mayan Abdominal Massage

Touching The Core The Heart and Intelligence of Mayan Abdominal Massage By Diane McDonald. Massage and Bodywork Magazine

Medical Massage

Fairly new branch of massage focusing on treatments of injuries, pathologies and rehabilitation.  There has been some talk of having medical certification in order to work with physicians, bill insurance and working with the health care systems of today.  It is important to participate in the process of developing this field so all modalities are included.  Will this affect practitioners right to bill insurance companies?  What about modalities such as structural integration, reiki, or polarity that heal injuries in other less direct ways?

Web resources: American Medical Massage Association

Myofascial Release

There are many methods of myofascial release.  It is used to evaluate an treat restrictions in the body’s connective tissue (muscles and fascia).  Connective tissue includes tendons, ligaments, cartilage, fascia, periosteum, joint capsules and the surface linings of the organs and vessels in the body.  Connective tissue forms a continuous net throughout the body.

Fascia is a complex supportive web throughout the body that affects all components of the muscloskeletal, nervous and visceral systems.  Myofascial release can be used to treat chronic pain, injuries, general aches and pains.

Fascial restrictions occur after after injuries, chronic contraction of the muscles due to stress or repetitive contractions.

Book resources: 

  • Soft Tissue Manipulation by Leon Chaitow  (December 1990) Astrologers Library; ISBN: 0892812761
  • Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction 2 volume set by Janet Travel
  • Endless Web; Fascial Anatomy and Physical Reality by Louis Schultz, Phd.

Web Resources:

  • Myofascial Release –  The John Barnes method.
  • Key elements of connective tissue massage by John Latz


Bonnie Pruden’s trigger point release therapy that is followed by re-education of affected muscles to its normal resting state.  Extensive 1300 hour training program with 45 hours of training every 2 years to maintain certification.

Book resources: Pain Erasure – by Bonnie Pruden

Web resources:


A system of bodywork founded in 1905 by chiropractic professor Oakley G. Smith, author of Modernized Chiropractic (1906). It includes nutritional, postural, and exercise counseling.

Naprapathic theory holds:

(a) that soft connective tissue in a state of contraction can cause “neurovascular interference,”

(b) that this “interference” may cause “circulatory congestion” and “nerve irritation,” and

(c) that reducing this “interference” (primarily by hand) paves the way for optimal homeostasis.

Treatment focuses on the contracted connective tissues mainly near the spine.  Uses repetitive, rhythmic, thrusts to gently stretch the contracted tissues.

Web resources: National College of Naprapathy

Neuromuscular therapy (sometimes referred to as trigger point therapy)

Uses advanced concepts in triggerpoint therapy to return the body to normal neuromuscular balance.  Has both European and American origins. In Europe, Stanley Leif started the work in the 1930’s and passed it on to his cousin Boris Chaitow, his son Peter Lief and Leon Chaitow.  The American version comes from Raymond Nimmo, DC,(The Receptor Tonus Method 1996), Janet Travel and later Paul St. John and Judith Walker Delaney.

Book resources: 

Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction 2 volume set by Janet Travel

Web resources: 

  • St. John Neuromuscular Therapy Seminars- Triggerpoint, Bach flower remedies
  • Judith Walker Delany Method -Neuromuscular Massage Therapy Center -American Version.

There is a brief history of the work and an explanation of the differences of the various types.

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