Although many claim to "believe in alternative medicine", the fact is they often bring their conventional mindset to the table. The massage table, that is.
If you are looking for a therapist or practitioner to fix, repair, or heal you so you can go back to your regularly scheduled lifestyle, then you're really not doing anything different from the person who wants to rely on medicine or surgery to solve their health problem. Both involve a passive approach to healthcare.
I've had clients who are not only unwilling to make changes in their posture, but practically cup their hands over their ears at the mere mention that they take responsibility for themselves, their actions, and their injuries.
So they may run down the idea of 'doctors and medicine' in favor of a more "holistic approach". but in reality, they're swapping out players while playing the same game.
This is why my preferred clients are the ones who want to learn ... and do. Rather than the passive approach (" ... just fix me!") they take a proactive approach, whereby I am their coach, their supplement, their mentor.
I spend time educating my clients about their own anatomy and physiology, in order to allow them the opportunity to take charge of their health and to move wisely throughout the day. "Knowledge is power", and when it comes to health, it's down-right essential!
I often refer to the conventional medical paradigm as"faith based". All religious connotations aside, the fact is: most people do what the doctor tells them, not because they know their own bodies, but because they believe and trust their health-care provider (and the system they are a part of) to solve their problem. Committing oneself to an action ... any action ... without knowing the why's and the particulars for why you're doing it, is nothing less than an act of faith. For good or for bad, that's what most folks do. They do what they're told without knowing why.
I believe in explaining to my clients the reasoning, the logic, and the methodology of various therapies and exercises. Only then will they really get what they need to out of the experience. When they understand how to move, and why, they will see to it themselves throughout their day. Getting in and out of a car, putting away dishes, lifting boxes, tying shoelaces, etc, are all typical activities that can be transformed into healthy, even therapeutic movement once they have the knowledge and background.
Don't expect anyone to repair you from the outside in. Your body heals from the inside out, so that's where you need to begin. You are the captain of your health. You steer the ship. Healthcare professionals are simply part of the crew. Their job is not to steer the vessel while you slumber below deck. Their job is to assist you as you steer your body thorough life's many experiences and circumstances. But in the end, it's your ship, and you're the one at the helm.
I love coming along side my clients and helping them solve their aches and pains, moans and groans, lumps and bumps! I love it when they say "Wow! That massage really helped ... AND I did those exercises you told me about. They really made a difference! Look! I can move my arm now!" I think that's what I enjoy the most about being a massage therapist ... helping people help themselves by educating them and awakening them to the exciting role of proactive health.