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The Evolution of Massage and Bodywork

Written by Chris Corrales

September 24, 2019

With time, everything evolves. Everything gets better, hopefully. In Dublin, CA, a genesis is happening, massage and bodywork is getting better, not only in terms of the therapy but also for practice members. Our clients have better results with their issues like low back pain, kyphosis, lordosis, scoliosis, tension headaches, whiplash, asthma, sciatic pain, arm/hand numbness, carpal tunnel syndrome, plantar fasciitis, bunions, etc.
The Big Bang at MedicinEvolution is client empowerment, self-agency, and understanding the problem. Most therapists don’t fulfill their role as educators and clients are kept in the dark or continuously relying on professionals to “fix” them.

I’m going to post frequently on a book I plan to write about the body. There are fundamental functions and things we can all learn and practice that can affect the quality of our health.

Why The Body Manual?

The hospital was my second childhood home. Frequent asthma attacks sent me to the ER. A shot of epinephrine or a breathing treatment were the only things that calmed those silent suffocating experiences. I was grateful for them!

Outside of the attacks, I had regular visits to my asthma doc, and we’ll call him, Dr. Better. Dr. Better knew me on a first-name basis. I’d go to him regularly for check-ups on the status of my asthma. He would check my spirometer reading each visit, listen to my lungs, inquired about any ER visits, and always inquired about the status of my asthma.

Dr. Better always made sure that medicines were fully stocked, and in a very polite, reassuring, gentle voice reminded me of how important it was to take them regularly. The medication certainly brought relief to acute attacks. He was concerned, especially if I had an attack between the regular check-ups. After attacks, he would emphasize the importance of taking the pills and blue inhaler twice a day, and that a proper course of medicines would prevent attacks. If asthma did flare up, I should puff the yellow steroid inhaler as needed.

My mom, who was an RN reinforced the doctor’s orders. She explained that for the medicines to work, they needed to be in my bloodstream constantly. I was a good patient and took the medication as prescribed. I was hopeful my asthma would go away. When I wasn’t regular with the course and an attack hit, I saw it as a sin of my inconsistency.

The medicines made me feel sick. My stomach was perpetually queasy, and I had unbearable jitters; after about a year of taking them religiously, I couldn’t do it anymore. The side effects were bad. However, they weren’t my biggest frustration which was that the medicines didn’t seem to affect the underlying asthma condition. My allergies or the fact that asthma would come on with exercise didn’t change. Taking the medication wasn’t worth it; they felt like bandaids masking a teeming infection.

I decided to do my research. I stopped the medicines and did things differently. This was before alternative medicine was a thing. There was no, or at least very little scientific research, or eclectic ideas readily available. I had to create my own. My body and my asthma became my laboratory. This was the beginning of The Body Manual. Today we have access to things like body hacking, human potential, and neuroscience. Conventional medicine is a system, and alternative medicine practitioners work within their systems, it’s body hackers who function in the realm of “the next new thing.” I don’t mean to say body hacking is the end-all, but it’s the beginning of going out and experiencing, trying new and different things.

I’m not sure this fits snugly into any of those categories. In one word, The Body Manual is about connection. Connection to ourselves, to others, and the world around us, primarily the natural world as we are a part of nature.

Why is a book like The Body Manual necessary today
when there’s so much already available?

The Body Manual is a starting point. We don’t need to get into a lot of technical stuff. Let’s face it; people are extreme, doing simple, easy things can create connection and balance. That’s the first thing that needs to happen, is default to center. We’re either sedentary or we over-exercise, we smoke cigarettes or eat lots of sugar, we party hard, or we’re isolated. The Body Manual is that book that can be used by anyone to get that dial closer to healthy without relying on stuff outside of ourselves.

Both the User and the Tech

Connection is the bottom line of this book. Connecting to our bodies in the way that I’m proposing is a unique thing, especially in this fast-paced time of technology and busyness. Most of us interact with our bodies the way we do with technology; we think of our role as being “the user.” We’re used to holding a piece of technology and interacting with it. The irony is that in our bodies, we’re both the user and the technology at the same time. Without a “manual,” we default more to the role of “the user” rather than “the technology” role.

What does “being the tech” mean?

When I was suffering from asthma, I would’ve loved a manual with tips tricks, and things to think about that would help me gain more awareness and agency over my body, like breathing exercises, nutrition, prevention, what to avoid, do more of, etc. I indeed received education around my asthma, but it was centered around medicine rather than around me and the things I could do to access my body’s potential. Asthma brought me to death’s door twice. I needed something that I could do from within outside of depending on heroic medicine.

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