Zhenya Wine

Massage Therapy Research and Education blog, by Dr. Christopher Moyer, Interviews Us!

Posted on: Sun, 09/06/2015 - 7:36pm By: Alice

Christopher Moyer, Ph.D., is a psychologist who has done research in massage therapy and meditation. He recently began a blog on research and massage therapy and I was honored that he asked to interview me for his blog.

I first got to know Chris when I heard that he’d done a metaanalysis that overturned what a lot of us thought about massage lowering cortisol. Curious, I looked him up on the internet and sent an email asking about his paper. Shortly after, I encountered him again in online discussions and it led to a friendship that was both professional and personal as we discovered we had many common interests.

Let Us Now Praise Those Who Challenge Us

Posted on: Wed, 05/29/2013 - 3:25am By: Alice

A massage therapist recently asked the question, "Who was your mentor and what did you learn from them?" Immediately, a particular individual came to mind and I began to think of how I would answer that question. Then I thought of the first massage therapist I considered to be a mentor. And then the second one. Shortly after, I thought of two individuals who came into my life a couple of years ago. They challenged me in ways that changed and improved my thinking. I thought back to my science-minded father who did little experiments with me and bought an encyclopedia for me when I was five years old. The list kept growing longer. It seemed to have no end.

Interview with Massage Talk Radio

Posted on: Wed, 05/08/2013 - 10:36pm By: Alice

On Monday, May 6, Kathryn Merrow interviewed me for 30 minutes for Massage Talk Radio. We had a lot of fun. She asked about how I got into massage, about my training and experience, and how I've evolved to incorporate the various things I've learned over the years into my practice. We talked about how my understanding of trigger points has changed and I was particularly happy to speak about what I've learned about pain science in recent years. I appreciated the opportunity to tell my fellow massage therapists that even though learning something new that contradicts what we've believed to be true can be uncomfortable at first, it does not have to be threatening and, in fact, when we embrace understanding how the body actually works, it's exciting and liberating.

Pushing Into Muscle: Are We Really Doing What We Think We Are Doing?

Posted on: Mon, 05/14/2012 - 2:24am By: Alice

We massage therapists are taught a lot about muscles. We also study bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, fascia. We learn a little about physiology, about other systems of the body, and some lip service is paid to the role of the nervous system in the relaxation response and to how the brain mediates the changes brought about by massage. But mostly we pay attention to muscles. We talk about which muscles are tight, find “knots” in them, and “release” them by pushing into them and/or stretching them with our hands, fingers, forearms, and elbows.

Neuroscience, Russian Massage, and Remembering Zhenya Kurashova Wine: An Interview With Will Stewart

Posted on: Fri, 09/09/2011 - 1:19am By: Alice

When Will Stewart, owner of 3-D Optimal Performance, asked to interview me, I was surprised and honored. Will recently began a series of webradio interviews with many of the "heavy hitters" in the field of manual and movement therapies and neuroscience. These are individuals who are bringing an understanding of what neuroscience knows about the brain and applying it to manual and movement therapies. Will has conducted some fascinating interviews with physical therapists, manual therapists, massage therapists, athletic trainers, occupational therapists, and even his piano instructor, all with an interest in understanding how the role of the brain and the central nervous systerm plays a part in their approach to their work.

Bringing Neuroscience and the Interactor/Operator Model to Therapeutic Massage

Posted on: Sat, 08/20/2011 - 3:47pm By: Alice

“Monkeys, and other animals, groom each other often with a marked reduction in stress. Touch is good, and one doesn’t need to wrap it up in pseudoscientific nonsense for it to be beneficial.” - Mark Crislip discussing reflexology on ScienceBased Medicine blog

These are the opening words to a paper on the interactor/operator model by Canadian physiotherapist Diane Jacobs, who describes herself as a "human primate social groomer and neuroelastician." When I first read this paper, I wasn't always completely clear about what Diane had to say, but what I understood resonated with me and articulated a dilemma I'd struggled with for a long time.

At The Russian Baths With Zhenya Kurashova Wine or "Alice In BaniaLand"

Posted on: Wed, 06/22/2011 - 1:22am By: Alice

My Russian Massage teacher, Zhenya Kurashova Wine, passed away recently. She'd been ill for awhile and so the news was expected. Still, I felt very sad. Another time, I will write more about her. For now, I find myself thinking about all the good times we had together. Zhenya was a remarkable woman, both professionally and personally, and she loved having a good time. She was fun to be with.

In 1997 she took a group of massage therapists to Moscow to see how massage is used in hospitals and clinics there. Although the time spent there was not long, it had a great impact on me. We spent the mornings and early afternoons at an orthopedic/sports medicine clinic. In the later afternoon and evenings, we did all sorts of fun things.

One of my friends publishes a small magazine and asked me to write up one of my experiences. It originally ran under the title "Alice In Banialand" and was accompanied by a lovely illustration of Alice in Wonderland and a character, a woman with a push broom, who appears in the story. I later published the story on a small website I had for a few years.

A Reader Asks About Swelling After Massage

Posted on: Wed, 09/29/2010 - 10:32pm By: Alice

Update on 4/5/13: Oddly, this has been one of my most popular articles. Apparently a significant number of people are looking up swelling and inflammation after massage therapy on google. Maybe massage therapists need to ease up a bit.

I might need to revise the language of this just a little, but my answer is still essentially the same. My clients don't seem to complain of this and while the reader insists the pressure was not too hard, I suspect it was either more than the body tolerated well or it was treated for too long. I'm not sure what else to say.


A reader asks:

I received a great massage about a week ago but the next day my lower back was swollen. Why would this happen? The massage was perfect pressure and she never hurt me at all. Can you please help me understand this?
 

Painless Deep Tissue Massage

Posted on: Fri, 07/09/2010 - 4:18pm By: Alice

An Oxymoron?

Painless deep tissue massage. Some people think it's an oxymoron. Many clients and therapists alike believe that in order for a massage to be therapeutic is has to be painful, that harder means deeper and better and more effective. They believe that the only way to affect deeper muscle tissue is to use a lot of pressure. I once thought this myself.

I am here to deliver some good news: massage does not have to be hard and painful to be effective and one does not have to inflict pain on the client in order to effect the deeper muscle tissues. In fact, the opposite is true. Too hard of pressure creates resistance in the body and pain only causes a stress response. I thank my Russian Massage teacher Zhenya Kurashova Wine for teaching me how to work effectively without causing discomfort to the client and how to do painless deep tissue massage.

What Is The Right Kind Of Massage?

Posted on: Sun, 05/16/2010 - 12:28pm By: Alice

Massage is an ancient healing art that has been practiced in every culture. Captain Cook once described how his back pain was successfully treated with massage by the native people of Hawaii during his stay in the islands.

Massage has evolved and taken many paths and continues to evolve during these modern times. With so many names and philosophies, how does a client know which is the right kind of massage for them? And how does the therapist know what is the right kind of massage for the client? Sports massage, Swedish massage, Russian massage, acupressure, deep tissue massage . . . there are so many different kinds of massage. I'll discuss some general categories in another article but for now I want to talk specifically about what I mean when I say that the right kind of massage can be very effective, while the wrong kind of massage will, at the very least, be ineffective and, at worst, cause symptoms to worsen.

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