Skip to main content

Conflicting Opinions: Why I Question Everything I Learn Through YouTube

Learning massage is not a static thing. I'm constantly researching new techniques, perpetually attempting to hone the old techniques I already know. Every year I'm required to attain at least 12 CEU's (continuing education units) to remain licensed and certified. The problem with massage is that you can't just read about those techniques. You have to see them before you can perform them. The best way to do this is to take a class with a certified instructor who knows what the hell she/he is doing. And for those 12 CEU's I WILL be required to find and pay that instructor so that they might give me a piece of paper that says I shelled out the dough and passed the class. That class will probably set me back a week's worth of pay, so that instructor better be damn good. Grumble.

If I were a rich woman, I would take a class every couple months. There are so many modalities that I'm dying to learn. Lymphatic Drainage, Table Top Thai, Reflexology, are only a few. I am not a rich woman, so I rely on the next best thing, educational videos. If things are really tight, I'll resort to the cheapest method I know, otherwise known as YouTube-How-To. It's not a method I particularly care for, however, and I'll tell you why: anyone can make a YouTube video. You could be a 20 year vet or fresh out of massage school. You could be some loser with a can of Wesson Oil and no certification other than, "Well, my girl says I rub her shoulders real good. Real good, if you know what I mean." Anyone can say they're a massage therapist and make an instructional video. Anyone. How would I know if they're lying unless they specifically give out credentials I can check?

Even when they give out their bona fides, there's no guarantee that the information they give is 100% accurate. Take these two instructors:

In the first video, massage therapist Athena Jezik suggests around 0:14 that working the sacrum for a prenatal massage is contraindicated (i.e. stay the hell away). Working around the sacrum is okay, she says, but in general, it's best not to touch it at all.

Now watch the second video. Skip ahead to 5:22 where LMT Heather Maynard says, "You can use firm to very firm pressure on the sacrum." Not "around the sacrum". Not "very light pressure on the sacrum." Firm pressure on the sacrum is A-OK. Hmm...

Both of these women are licensed professionals. Maynard has co-authored a book called Home Pregnancy Massage. Jezik has been an LMT since the mid 70's. They know what they're doing, and they know what works for them. Unfortunately, what works for them isn't necessarily going to work for me or my clients, and I have to be careful which techniques I use from either one of them. If these two were teaching me face to face, I could ask, "Well, I heard Maynard say this. What's up with that?" or "Jezik said no way to that. Can you explain why she's wrong?" I could email the quandary, and eventually I will ask for their take on the conflicting advice, but there's no guarantee they will get back to me on that or that I'd get a satisfactory answer. At least in person they could see me scowling in frustration. Frowny face emoticon over instant message just isn't the same.

Guess I'll have to make do with a Fancy Bear Meme.


Popular posts from this blog

Five Things You Didn't Know Could Happen During a Massage

Everyone likes a good massage. Well, almost everyone. There are some that cringe at the very idea of being naked in a room while a total stranger rubs them down. These people are either crazy or have never had a massage before and don't know what they're missing. There are also the ones that like massage a little too much and should feel free to do to themselves what they erroneously believe they are paying me to do to them. Also, read item number 3 of this blog article I wrote in November of 2012 and follow the instructions therein.

But for those of you who are just looking for a nice, perfectly innocent, legal, and in no way rage inducing way to relax, massage is the way to go. That said, there are a few things you should be prepared for before getting that first massage. Things such as...


I once had a client come in for a deep tissue massage who must have eaten a very big, extremely gassy meal right before climbing onto my tab…

Top 5 Things That Drive Your Massage Therapist Crazy

I recently read an article titled 8 Things Your Masseuse Doesn't Want You to Know. After reading it thoroughly, I've come to the conclusion that the LMT's (licensed massage therapists, for those of you not in the know) interviewed either haven’t been in the business for very long, or really hate their jobs. For example, one of the items mentioned that most massage therapists get scared when their clients snore. I don't buy that. I think if a client is relaxed enough to fall asleep on my table, I'm doing a damn fine job. Isn't snoring like applause for massage therapists? It is to me.
It got me to thinking of my own personal pet peeves though, so I tried googling Things Your LMT Hates or Things That Drive Your Masseuse to Drinking, but these searches provided no useful data, and quite frankly I’d like to know what insane, perverted monkey Google put in charge of their search engine for me to come up with this list:

Since Google failed me miserably, I thought I wou…

Facebook PM Mating Call 2: Take the Hint Perv

If the internet has taught me anything over the years, it's this: No matter how unattractive you think you are, no matter how homely you might be, there will always be that one pervert who will whack off to your profile picture and beg you for cyber sex in a Facebook private message chat. And chances are, this pervert will misspell everything he types and mangle the English language beyond recognition. I consider myself an understanding, open minded person. People get lonely. I get that. If you never ask, you'll never know. But when someone tells you they're married and not interested in your need to "take out sperm", you should take what they say at face value and try to hit up someone else. Especially when they tell you they have a history of blogging morons who won't take no for an answer. Case in point:

Being NiladriSekhar Ghosh: Hello

Karma Girl: Hello

Being Niladri Sekhar Ghosh: Wassup

Karma Girl: Goofing off on Facebook and waiting for my husband to come h…