I first thought with interest of the intersections of body work/massage and yoga in my early days of teaching yoga in the mid to late 1980s, when working with one of my mentors who was both a massage therapist and a yoga teacher. Although I went on a different path, into fitness, and experienced body work as a receiver, rather than a practitioner, that initial thought has come back a lot over the years. It was not until both of my children were in college that I felt ready to take on the long term and intense preparation. I do feel my two years of graduate study of exercise science, my years in the gym training, power lifting, teaching group exercise, as well as decades practicing and teaching yoga.... and 6 years of academic philosophy have all helped me during my time in massage therapy school, and studying for the licensure exam. And the connections between yoga, in particular Yin yoga, and massage therapy seem to me to be real and profound. Many friends expressed concern at my attempting this at my age... the work is after all physically demanding. But I decided succeed or fail you never know if you can if you do not try. And I found that my age and experience were as great a strength as a weakness. Last Christmas my men's yoga class gifted me a bracelet that said "She thought she could so she did". This made me so happy. But perhaps it is better to say, "so she began" because I see school and passing the exam (which was extremely challenging) as only a start. I already am making a list of the modalities in which I want to take more and deeper training, once school is paid for, to keep being able to keep bringing you modalities and treatments that provide you whatever will best match what you need when you get on my table.
For my bio on the site of the International Association of Fitness Professionals:
(photo from 23 years ago) ...
For my bio on the site of RI Hot Yoga:
For my Facebook pages:
A Note about Gratuities
At least half (and often more) of what is charged for a massage service goes to expenses: rent, supplies, laundry, business expenses, insurance, etc. Of the rest some goes to a share of family expenses, and paying off school debt. When you give a gratuity above that some of it may go to an occasional lunch of sushi, but most goes to education... not just paying off what I have had, but creating a fund to allow my further studies. I want to learn Vodder lymphatic drainage, Bindedgewebs or other connective tissue massage, gua sha (Chinese scraping massage), and several other techniques, all of which will allow me to bring important tools to bear to all of the massages I do. Not everyone is able to leave a gratuity, nor do I expect it. I prefer to leave envelopes for tips and feedback, rather than adding it to a bill, to make it clear it is not a requirement. But I would like you to know that when you do I deeply appreciate it, and that my hope is to share the fruits of your generosity back with my clients.