David Bennett Massage About Me

 

Background

-- In 1977 I became a Registered Nurse because I wanted to be of service to fellow humans. The work balances physical, mental, and emotional/spiritual labor almost perfectly.

-- Eventually I specialized in Intensive Care, where the atmosphere could be satisfying and rewarding -- or sobering and depressing. I frequently felt I helped put people back together, back on their feet, with medications, knowledge, and nurturing. But often I imagined I got in the way of people trying to die, by clouding patients in high tech equipment, monitors that blinked and blipped, tubes and wires that went everywhere.

-- Meanwhile the health care system in the United States had become increasingly dysfunctional. Big corporations, impersonal entities that mostly valued the bottom line, devoured the community hospital that employed me for nearly two decades.

-- I decided to become a Massage Therapist. I recognized that massage offered precisely what I had envisioned when I began Nursing School. I would give healing service directly to individuals, making a difference in their well-being.

-- But just as I began Massage School , along came a way to maintain my Nursing career while keeping my original idealism and satisfaction. I was offered a job at a non-profit AIDS residence, a facility where hospice nursing is practiced alongside restorative nursing. Some come to us explicitly to be comforted in their dying process. But more and more, people come to be stabilized and re-enter the world in a healthier state.

-- So I am able to balance Massage and Nursing. I'm very happy doing both.

Philosophy

-- Receiving touch is essential for our sense of well-being. We spend our first nine months inside another person. We need flesh-to-flesh contact to survive our first year. Our bodies are wired to flourish when we are held and cradled.

-- My massage is founded on the best of intentions, respect for boundaries, meeting your wishes and needs. I want to give you the best massage I can. I try to work as lightly or as deeply as you desire.

-- My guiding hope is to leave you in better shape at the end of the massage. That ideally means you walk out of a session:

  • less stressed
  • centered
  • more optimistic
  • tranquil
  • nurtured
  • relaxed
  • rejuvenated
  • more connected with your body
  • more flexible
  • less painful

-- Besides the beneficial effects to the recipient of a massage, the world also benefits. If everybody in the world received occasional massages, peace could break out between contentious nations. Weapons could be converted to instruments that ease suffering.

-- But let's not get too grandiose. Massage makes you feel better about yourself and about the world. It might make the world feel better about you, too.

Training

-- I started massaging knots in my mother's neck in the 1960s. She ate it up.

-- I took informal workshops throughout the 1970s and 1980s, geared toward the layperson, guiding us in techniques to give and receive warm and caring touch.

-- In the meantime, I became a Registered Nurse in 1977, graduating from Merritt College in Oakland, California .

-- In Portland, Oregon, I worked in an Osteopathic Hospital, where chiropractic-type manipulations by doctors and interns were among the therapies offered to patients. I absorbed tips and theories about a hands-on approach to healing. I offered free massages to friends and learned from their feedback.

-- I incorporated massage into my everyday care of patients, whenever it seemed appropriate. When I worked the evening shift, it helped many patients relax enough in a stress-filled environment to get to sleep.

-- I enrolled at East-West College of the Healing Arts in Portland, graduating in 1999. There I received the basic science instruction:

  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Kinesthesiology
  • Pathology.

-- And I learned the art of massage, educating my hands, my body, my intuition. Since graduating, I've studied

  • Cranio-Sacral massage
  • Deep Tissue massage
  • Eastern modalities.

-- In my ever-evolving approach, I use whatever resources I have to give you the best and most effective massage I can.

Massage License: OR #7109. 
Oregon Massage Therapists Association. 

Techniques

-- Encouraging you to take deep breaths now and again, I tend to begin conservatively, introducing my hands to your body, palpating for tight and/or sore spots.

 -- Starting from a fundamental Swedish massage approach long strokes, percussive strokes, kneading strokes I add other modalities to the recipe, tailored to your needs, either as you've explicitly requested or as I intuit.

-- I can use stronger, deeper methods (Deep Tissue, Acupressure), aiming to undo knots and redirect spasms and free locked-up muscle groups. I check in with you periodically, to make sure the pressure is acceptable.

-- Techniques from the Traeger method help me provide another element of massage -- movement. From subtle and soothing rhythms to vigorous rocking to gentle cradling, I welcome your muscles and nerves into a serenity that comes from within you, rather than from a demand I impose upon you.

-- I can also offer passive stretches for you, especially to keep your back limber, as well as suggesting stretches for you to do on your own.

-- And I use my education and long experience as a Health Care Practitioner to understand what might be underneath neuromuscular problems and to discuss other aspects of health and well-being with you.

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