I have always been active in multiple sports including weight lifting. In my early 20s I injured my shoulder due to over training. The medical term for this is Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI). The doctor I visited said that if I kept weight training, I would need surgery in my shoulder. He also said the surgery only had a 50% success rate. He went on to say that if the surgery failed that I would not be able to lift my hands above my head (I could barely do it at the time and didn’t want to risk even more range of motion.). For the next six years, I avoided bench press and any exercise that would jeopardize my shoulder. The problem was that after six years my shoulder still was only 50% functional. I tried all kinds of rehab exercise but none of them worked substantially. After much prodding, a friend at the gym convinced me to get a second opinion from a specialist he had used. I went just to get him off my back, but to my surprise, and the surprise of the doctor, (He thought I had a bone spur based on my description of my pain), all I needed was a shot in the arm. He told me that it was a 3-day process, but after the 3rd day I would have increased range of motion and less pain. He also said that I may need an additional shot to get back to 100% motion and to be 100% free of pain. The doctor was extremely correct. I went from approximately 50% range of motion to approximately 75%. I was excited about the results and couldn’t wait to go back for another shot. Unfortunately, a few weeks after the doctor visit, I received a bill for the full price of the shot. Initially, I was told that it was covered under my insurance plan but it turned out that the insurance denied payment. This left me with a large unexpected bill and the reality that it would take another large bill to get the final shot.
Discouraged by the denied claim, I was determined to get my shoulder back to 100%. At this point, however, I knew that it was mineral build up and not a torn ligament. This is where my passion for massage therapy was born. I had received massages before, and I would always tell the therapist to work on my shoulder, but they never provided any real results. One day though, I received a massage that noticeably addressed the injured area. The difference was the technique and skill of the therapist. After that I went back for a several additional sessions and after a couple months my shoulder was at 95% range of motion. Additionally, the pain was considerably less. The last 5% of my recovery came from shoulder strengthening exercises and stretching. Ever since that experience I have believed in the power of a proper massage.
About 3 years ago I entered the Marine Corps Mud Run in North Carolina with my high school buddies. It was a great experience that sparked my passion for mud runs. Unfortunately, I injured the same shoulder on one of the obstacles. It was in a different area than my previous injury. For some reason my first course of action, was to rehab my shoulder with light corrective exercises. I did this for about 3 months and saw some improvement but not much. I don’t know why I didn’t go get a massage first since it worked in the past, maybe it was cost prohibitive at the time but for whatever reason I didn’t go. Finally, I started going to get massages. I got at least three of them and my shoulder was not any better. Finally, I went to another therapist and this time I felt the results immediately. I knew that this Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT) was going to give me the results that I needed. After a few more sessions with her, and some corrective exercises my shoulder was back to 100%. It was at this time that I recognized that not all Licensed Massage Therapists are the same. Some have different levels of skill; some have different levels of ability. It is important to find a massage therapist that is right for you, especially if your suffering from muscle pain.
I formed my company around the premise of Repetitive Strain Injury prevention and reduction. Lifting weights and typing or working in a warehouse or factory are not exactly the same, but they all have something in common: massage provides a necessary ingredient to wellness for such individuals.
I researched many articles and paid several doctors to access medical journals not available to those who are outside of the medical industry. I found out that there is ample research based evidence that supports the effectiveness of the correct type of massage and RSI reduction. While this is not news to the massage industry, as they have known and practiced this for years, the research was not “ample” in definitively showing that massage addresses Repetitive Strain Injuries. Believe it or not, some research actually stated the contrary. I read these contradicting articles, they measured the effects of massage therapy given during one session only, and or they did not use specific techniques that address RSI. In today’s society, the acceptance of massage as a medical aid is so accepted that some insurance providers carry it as an option in their medical plans. Check with your insurance provider to see if this is the case. If so, then a doctor can prescribe massage that can be covered under the company’s medical plan.
Percopion Corporate Massage will work with any company’s insurance provider to achieve the same status. It’s not a guarantee as each insurance provider has its own reasons for, operating their respective policies, but we will make the attempt.
In conclusion I don’t believe that massage therapy is the panacea for all Repetitive Strain Injuries. It is important to address any injuries that you have with your doctor first, as some injuries can only be corrected with surgery. It is also important to inform your Licensed Massage Therapist if you have any area that you are unsure about. I do however believe that for some, the correct type of massage therapy is a must for total wellness. And for the minor day to day aches and pains, massage therapy can be very beneficial. The research supports it, and so does my experience. I have posted several university studies that support these claims at percopion.com under the “Body Work Studies” tab.