Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual

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9780838507476: Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual

This book shows bodywork professionals who may be experiencing symptoms of fatigue, stress, or overuse, how to heal themselves and prevent injuries from recurring. It teaches healthy bodyworkers how to stay that way, and to help clients who suffer from repetitive motion injuries. Chapter topics include principles of physics—moving and static objects, weight and pressure; eastern influences on body mechanics; unpatterning; repetitive motion and other common injuries; taking care of yourself—physiologically and psychologically; and adaptations for special populations/conditions. For all licensed massage therapists, neuropaths, chiropractors and chiropractic assistants, acupuncturists, physical therapists and physical therapist assistants, certified nursing assistants, and expressive art therapists.

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From the Back Cover:

Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual

Marian Dixon

This book allows bodyworkers to become active players in their own health and wellness by helping them implement body mechanics and self-care techniques to avoid occupational injury, stress, and burnout. Conceptual discussions, clear line illustrations, and kinesthetic exercises bring ergonomic concepts to life, while presenting up-to-date information on important aspects of self-care, such as overuse syndromes, burnout prevention, building strength, coordination, and flexibility, social support, and stress manangement.

  • Highlights body awareness and emphasizes situation-, technique-, and individual-specific body mechanics skills.
  • Troubleshooting Poor Body Mechanics sections help bodyworkers quickly identify unhealthy patterns of movement to avoid injury.
  • Common Injury and Repetitive Overuse Review in Chapter 7 provides a quick review of pertinent pathology and orthopedic concepts.
  • Active Stretches and Relaxation Skills sections help bodyworkers prepare and renew for the demanding work of massage therapy.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Preface

Work-related injury is a major reason why bodyworkers drop out of the massage industry. Understanding how to implement body mechanics and self-care techniques (physiological and psychological) helps emerging and established professionals to work smarter, not harder, and to avoid occupational injury, stress, and burnout.

Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual stresses the importance of becoming an active player in your own health and wellness. The text helps each individual to prepare and renew for the demanding work of massage therapy.

Identifying sensations of discomfort allows you to make appropriate physical changes to feet better while you work. This skill, in turn, helps facilitate the process of positive emotional change. Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual enhances the ability to sense in the moment when a body position or technique is not comfortable or effective, and provides alternatives for unhealthy patterns.

Learning to relax through simple techniques such as stretching, breathing with attention, and guided imagery help to ease the process of letting go of harmful patterns. Specific relaxation techniques are presented throughout the text, to allow readers to learn these skills at a comfortable pace.

Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual provides a basic understanding of the contributing factors and self-care options for common injuries and overuse syndromes that affect bodyworkers, such as thoracic outlet syndrome, carpal tunnel syndrome, low back pain, headaches, stiff neck, temporomandibular joint disorder, sciatic pain, and knee and other joint discomforts. It also provides strategies for preventing the recurrence of these conditions.

Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual provides a clear, easy to use program that can be followed for a complete course of ergonomic study. The content is comprehensive enough to allow educators to develop a body mechanics class based on the book.

The material can be taught in modules—taking each chapter as a unit. Considering each chapter as a module provides schools with a framework to cover important aspects of body mechanics, while leaving the flexibility to mix and match topics as needed. Specific chapters can be easily integrated into established bodywork classes as students learn basic (or advanced) massage techniques. The material is especially recommended for the beginning student as attention to body mechanics and self-care right from the start makes massage learning easier and more effective.

For practitioners who have never had the opportunity to systematically approach body mechanics as a subject of inquiry, or who may need a refresher course, Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual can serve as a reference manual or as an enlightening way to meet continuing education requirements in the form of a class or support group.

The text is also appropriate as an ergonomic primer for anyone experiencing the stresses of repetitive motion in corporate or health care environments.

The face of massage professionals is changing. Younger students are approaching massage as a viable profession as well as seasoned individuals who are choosing a major mid-life (or later) career change. Body Mechanics and Self-Care Manual helps hold the interest of all levels of students, from high school graduate to individuals with advanced degrees. Instructors and students alike will benefit from the complete learning package which includes:

  • Instructor's Guide containing presentation content, objectives, suggested strategies for teaching, and sample test questions and answers.
  • End of chapter summaries that highlight the major concepts presented in each section.
  • Kinesthetic exercises and questions for discussion to provide classroom activities and encourage students to think critically and apply unit concepts to real life situations.
  • Body mechanics red flags and guidelines that provide ways to identify unhealthy massage patterns and strategies for improving efficiency and enjoyment during work.

Acknowledgments

I wish to thank my family for their presence, support, and love, which has sustained me throughout the creation of this book. Thank you Art, Roy, and Sophie Dixon.

I also wish to acknowledge Lisa Ann Kuhnau, L.M.T, the artist, who has spent an enormous amount of time and energy with the illustrations that grace these pages. Thank you for your kindness, patience, and support.

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