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As the role of massage therapy in cancer care expands, it is an exciting time to provide oncology massage. In this intensive course, we combine the art and practice of touch to create safe, effective massage sessions for clients with cancer and cancer histories. In a lively, supportive learning environment, participants learn simple, concrete ways to adapt massage to cancer and cancer treatment.
We look closely at the dynamics of cancer spread, shining new light on the old myth that massage was contraindicated, and we introduce several approaches for educating the public about this common concern. We then modify traditional western massage techniques for common client presentations, including surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, bone metastasis, vital organ involvement, and lymphedema risk. Unique positioning and bolstering techniques are introduced for pain relief, sleep support, and overall comfort.
We introduce guidelines for a range of client presentations, from robust to medically frail. These guidelines may be used effectively in a variety of massage settings, including the hospital, private practice, spa or retreat center, franchise, and hospice.
A balanced approach to learning blends lecture, spirited discussion, and hands-on work. In-depth homework is assigned prior to the course (instructional videos, 2-3 hrs. total view time) and during the course (about 1 hr. of evening homework on days 1, 2, and 3).
Massage therapists leave with essential oncology massage tools: sample protocols, a client intake form, follow-up intake questions, a visual decision tree, clearly described pressure guidelines, supervised hands-on practice experiences, and an extensive training manual.
New in 2016: A “Peer Practice Clinic”
In a peer practice clinic (PPC), students pair up and work with each other in two supervised sessions on the final day of the course. Using realistic client case scenarios, each student gives an oncology massage to a fellow student and receives an oncology massage from that student. With teacher support and supervision, students practice interviewing, communicating with a client, and adapting massage therapy to cancer symptoms and side effects of treatment.
Read more about the course, topics, teachers, and FAQs here: http://www.tracywalton.com/4-day-intensive/.]
About the Instructor:
Tracy Walton, MS, LMT, is a researcher, writer, award-winning educator, and specialist in massage therapy and cancer care. She is a dynamic voice for the power of touch, and is the author of Medical Conditions and Massage Therapy: A Decision Tree Approach. Tracy appears in the film “Touch, Caring, and Cancer,” an inspiring instructional program for care partners. She has worked as a massage therapist in private practice since 1990.
As a researcher, Tracy has worked on NIH (National Cancer Institute)-funded clinical trials involving professional massage and massage by caregivers. Research partners include the Osher Institute at Harvard Medical School, Beth-Israel Deaconess Medical Center, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center, and Collinge and Associates.
In her courses and presentations, Tracy warmly welcomes and reaches consumers, researchers, health care providers, and massage therapists from all levels of training. In 2003, the National AMTA named her the Teacher of the Year. In 2013, the AMTA Massachusetts Chapter presented her with the Chapter Humanitarian award. Learn about her work in oncology massage at www.tracywalton.com.