TEST, the power of information
Imagine for a moment that your car breaks down, or that you hear a strange noise, you take it to the mechanic, and he tells you that he has to change I don’t know which part of the clutch or the gearbox, without trying it, without opening the hood of the car, wouldn’t you find it weird? Would you trust?
In some things, it would be obvious, a tire in poor condition for example, but, from the outset, I would feel distrustful if the fault was something internal to the car, the same thing would happen to me in the event of an electrical failure in our houses.
So, if it would seem strange to us that a mechanic does not check, does not test an engine, why do not we work with tests? For me, the most obvious thing about something in common between an electrician, a mechanic, and a theopath, is that in their respective areas they use tests, tests to find out what is happening, where the fault is, what needs to be changed, but, we as masseuses, we do not do it,
The osteopath and physiotherapist who know more about physiology, pathophysiology, and the human body than the masseur works with tests, and they use tests.
Why not us?
At least those of us who want to sell our services and ourselves as therapists should work with tests. Although it would be obvious that the masseur who is dedicated to relaxing massage is not necessary for him.
But why work with test?
“I am holistic and I work on everything” is a phrase that I have come across since I have been working in this professional sector since 2002 and as I have said before, if physiotherapists and osteopaths with much more knowledge of the human body work with tests, we , masseuses with much less training, it is more justified to work with tests.
Working with tests means working with an objective and neutral way to obtain information on what the cause is, what is the most important thing to deal with the client.
This means that it is a way to avoid working by chasing pain points, understanding that pain is only a cause of the visit and that we do not have to give it importance.
Probably the pain comes from another structure, and in the client it works as a protection or adaptation mechanism, that in the best of cases, because when the pain is chronic, it is no longer a tissue problem.
This is very important, we know that as masseuses and as people we do not like to leave our comfort zone, and if we are masseuses it is because we like to touch, we like to work the muscle, stretch it, squeeze it, but at some point, with clients specific we have to think if we want to work that part of the body that we like (muscles) or we have to leave that selfish point and look for how to help our client, even leaving aside our passion for his good, / working with muscles) and that means understand that in chronic cases it is not a tissue problem (tissues) but rather a problem of working with mechanisms that fix and chronicle the client’s condition.
But to discern all this we need to work in a neutral way, forgetting to work with what I like as a professional and want to work with the client to do what the client needs us to do…
And that means forgetting the body from a musculocentric point of view and taking a step further, also leaving aside, not only working trying to relax those pain points, incidentally, wasting time, ours and that of the client, and also overcoming phrases like “I work like this because it works for me” and trying to apply a bit of reason and not belief (I work here because the problem is with the psoas) Have I tested that psoas? If it is yes, and the test comes out positive, go ahead
But if I don’t test, what do I base my work on? “My teacher told me…” “I read it in a book..” These are not the best options.
Can the same criteria be applied to all customers with a similar problem? If the answer is YES, it is wrong, and we are making the client pay with time and money for our limiting belief.
If it is NO, how do we discern? How do we differentiate when the client with that pain has the same problem as 100 other clients who have come with similar symptoms?
You can’t know if you don’t work with tests
What types of tests?
Well, it depends a lot on where you direct your work, there are many tests and it would be impossible to talk about all of them in a post, but to name them we could talk about:
Functional tests, which talk about muscle function
Positional tests, which talk about the symmetry and position of different structures
Global tests, Unspecific, but it is a good way to start
Kinesiological test, Applying applied or holistic kinesiology
Postural tests, they are used to know what type of information is sent by the sensors and how it affects the nervous and postural system
Neurodynamic tests They serve to test the good state of the peripheral nervous system…
Osteopathic test, reflex test, etc. etc.
When I started in 2002 as a masseur I wanted to know a thousand techniques to treat that point of that muscle. When I studied osteopathy I understood that the technique does not matter too much, it does not matter to learn 100 techniques if you are not putting your hand where you should,
100 techniques are not used to release the lumbar square, but rather decongestion and work on the liver and portal circulation, and at this point the difference between being a masseuse and a therapist begins.