In 1993, after concluding the first day of a two-day cycling event, I hobbled to the massage tent at the day’s finish line, looking for relief for my painful legs. I was convinced I was in trouble for the next day’s leg of the event. Although I had never had a massage before, what was there to lose?
That massage brought quick relief, and when I got off the table I no longer had muscle spasms. I felt slightly stronger and steadier on my feet. So far, so good.
But it was the next day that made me a believer. I woke up the next morning and I was amazed that my legs felt fresh and rested. It was as if I had not cycled those 80 miles the day before. That physical revival had an enormous effect on my psychology as well, and I finished the other 80 miles that day without a problem.
That first massage experience started a journey to the profession I love. Having been an athlete since childhood ever since I was in Little League, I found a new appreciation for the body’s ability to heal when facilitated by skilled body work. Ice hockey was my sport growing up, and I played at a high level until my early twenties. I also taught myself how to be a skilled batter in baseball. I could have benefitted then, from what I came to know.
Studying anatomy, the working of the body, and becoming a massage therapist definitely allowed me to be a better athlete. As a long-time runner, I was able to add road biking and swimming and competed in triathlons. Tennis is my main sport these days - part of my life for over three decades.
Today, many of my clients are athletes and attest to my work as helping their performance and competitive advantage. As an athlete and a massage therapist, I bring knowledge to the massage table that helps my clients, both athletes and non-athletes alike.
I love to teach.
I want to help others benefit from massage, and found that helping to develop the next generation of massage therapists expands the circle of healing and helping.
In 2002, having had a successful private massage practice for five years, I was approached to teach the 10-month intensive hands-on orthopedic and medical massage program at the well-regarded University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey’s (UMDNJ) new massage program. I taught this program in three locations in New Jersey, and also taught sports massage, chair massage, several other courses. By teaching, I learned more and developed new ways to relay information to my massage clients.