2023 allowed JMS‘s readers to enjoy three complex clinical cases in which therapists successfully used Medical Massage to dramatically change their patients’ lives where modalities offered by traditional and alternative medicine had failed.

          JMS’s Editorial Board feels that only real cases solved by massage therapists with proper clinical training can illustrate the unprecedented value of using Medical Massage in integrative rehabilitation.

          We express deep appreciation to three exceptional therapists who are former or current students of the Science of Massage Institute for their unprecedented clinical work and expertise:

1. Tianna Beebe, LMT: Medical Massage Courses & Certification | Science of Massage Institute » MEDICAL MASSAGE WITH AROMATHERAPY vs POSTSURGICAL NERVE TRAUMA

2. Cheri Conklen, LMT: Medical Massage Courses & Certification | Science of Massage Institute » THREE MEDICAL MASSAGE SESSIONS vs. COMPLEX COMBINATION OF SOMATIC DYSFUNCTIONS

3. Kristi Tidwell, LMT, CMMP: Medical Massage Courses & Certification | Science of Massage Institute » MEDICAL MASSAGE vs. FRUITLESS PAIN MANAGEMENT


          The majority of our readers voted for the clinical case presented by Kristi Tidwell, LMT, CMMP. Here is our interview with:

WINNER of JMS’s International Best Case of the Month Contest, 2023


Kristi Tidwell, LMT, CMMP

JMS: Congratulations on becoming the Winner of JMS’s professional contest!

K. Tidwell: I thank everyone who voted for my clinical case. I would also like to mention Tianna and Cheri’s exceptional contributions. I immensely enjoyed and learned from their clinical experiences.

JMS: How did you get into massage therapy?

K. Tidwell: In 2001, I was a high school senior, and just before graduation, I had an opportunity to attend a two-day seminar with the Phoenix College Therapeutic Massage Program. We experienced a wide array of different modalities, ending with reflexology, and I was enamored right from the start. They offered grants, and I was awarded a scholarship for signing up for their 700-hour program starting that fall.

We began class on 9/10/2001. Most of us learned about the tragic events unfolding in New York on the radio while we drove into school the next morning. The shared tragedy created a bonding experience that stayed with us throughout the program. As we learned and studied the curriculum, I fell madly in love with muscle anatomy on the day we used plastic skeletons and Play-Doh. By molding and layering the muscles individually, I understood the body as a topography map. It filled me with a child-like glee because I could visualize how it all worked, and that excitement still fuels me to this day.

When I attended my first Medical Massage course with Dr. Ross Turchaninov in 2006, his science-based approach immediately appealed to me. Yes, it wasn’t easy to understand most of what was said that first weekend, but I immediately knew it was worth my time and dedication to learn it all. It took me 17 years to complete the CMMP program, and during these years, I studied his textbooks, memorized muscle anatomy, and took live training classes with SOMI.

Eventually, I started working for an integrative medical facility in Tempe, AZ, that practiced multiple disciplines of medicine. I ran its therapy bay for many years, side-by-side with chiropractors, physical therapists, medical doctors, and nurse practitioners. It gave me an exceptional opportunity to learn first-hand what it is to be a real clinician.

JMS: Please tell our readers about your practice. What is your opinion of Medical Massage, and how has it helped your practice?

K. Tidwell: Medical Massage has changed everything for me. I have been practicing massage for nearly 24 years, and I am doing things I never thought possible. I continue to learn and understand the pain phenomenon better with every new patient I help. The idea of being able to separate and read a patient’s symptoms while tracing them back to the initial trigger is as brilliant as simple.

Now, I see different pain patterns, like SOS signals, coming from the affected tissues. SOMI’s Program has given me the ability to read pathology in the human body like Morse code, directly address the initial trigger, and help tissue in the affected area recover.

I constantly observe life-changing results from just a handful of Medical Massage sessions and can help more patients in a day with various pain syndromes than I ever believed possible. My physical ability to continue and even accelerate in this field after many years of practice is directly related to the approach I learned from Dr. Ross.

It is simply incredible what a difference it makes to use correct body mechanics and diversified medical massage techniques that decisively improve patient conditions while saving my hands from repetitive stress and breakdown. I am looking forward to stacking up another 20 years!

My business is skyrocketing now! Everything Dr. Ross told me once has proved to be 100% accurate. He said that if I complete SOMI’s Medical Massage Certification Program, my biggest worry will be, “How will I see all these people?” And I am absolutely living that dream!

JMS: What is your favorite type of bodywork?

K. Tidwell: I am completely obsessed with the Lateral Shift Technique I learned with SOMI and its application to the entire body. It is a gentle and subtle but highly effective treatment option. I am amazed at how easily I can melt fuzz, unstick tissues, and restore function and mobility, all of which immediately alleviate pain and dysfunction.

I use Lateral Shift every week to unlock my forearm flexors and protect my hands and wrists. It has been an absolute game-changer for me and, I am sure, for other therapists trained by SOMI.

JMS: Any professional advice for therapists who are new to the field?

K. Tidwell: Study muscle anatomy! The better you understand the concept of soft tissue layer arrangement AND the direction of muscle fibers, the more self-evident Medical Massage protocols become. All of this technical knowledge will come to you when you can envision how our body functions as a whole.

Seek out anatomy training apps such as Kenhub and Muscle in Motion, and use them often. Their visualizations will help your hands see the layers of tissue and begin to address them individually. The results are nothing short of astounding. Consider joining SOMI’s Medical Massage Certification Program to help the many people who suffer from very complex somatic pathologies!

Category: Person of the Month