Experience Counts in Massage Therapy

By Chad Dupuis
Tagged in Bodywork and Research

An interesting study was recently published in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies.  Researchers from Tsukuba University of Technology performed a small study looking at the effects of practitioner skill and efficacy.  While many of us who have had massage have experienced both good and bad massages.  But what makes the difference?  Massage therapy is actually a very difficult skill that requires a mix of natural talent and trained ability which people can learn from good instructors.  

While somewhat simple the study compared results in neck/shoulder stiffness and anxiety levels after a freshman or sophomore massage therapist, one by an instructor, and as a control just simply resting on the table.  The more experienced massage instructor not only alleviated pain better but anxiety levels were lower even when compared to those who just rested on the table.


As noted above there is natural talent and trained ability but there is also a strong exchange which happens through the power of touch.  This study illustrates this in a basic way and opens up the avenue for more detailed studies in the future.

Experience Counts in Massage Therapy

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Authored by: Chad Dupuis on 21 June 2010

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