How To Change the Way You Move

By Kathy McCready

As Director of a wellness center in New Providence, New Jersey and a former ballerina of the New Jersey Ballet, I have a direct and keen personal interest in what alleviates pain, stiffness and tightness. Recently I had a fascinating conversation with Larry Heisler, M.A., LMT, the director of New Jersey Massage. I asked him all about the different styles of massage therapy: Swedish, Deep Tissue, Sports etc and why my clientele should be asking for a medical massage. This is what he had to say: 

“When Bob Hope and Rose Kennedy reached 100 years old they were asked, ‘What is the secret to your longevity’? Without hesitation they both said ‘massage’.” I knew it couldn’t be the simple Swedish massage that people enjoyed on cruises and vacation they were talking about; sure it’s relaxing and therapeutic but it had to be something more, something significantly more to so dramatically extend their life spans to 100. After all, Bob Hope was not known to be a health aficionado like my friend Jack LaLanne and genetics can only account for so much. Now after more than 35 years of performing and teaching massage to many, many thousands, I am literally at the very top of my skills and I can tell you why what I and my staff do that makes such a profound difference over time.

In a nutshell…as we get older our muscles get harder, shorter and colder, eventually settling into our body pattern and determining how we move in space the remainder of our lives. Can you say frozen in time? Your discomfort, your stiffness and inflexibility is normal, we all get that. That’s what aging is. You’ve might have heard me say one of my famous lines, ‘Rigamortis sets in way before you die’. The difference between the deep tissue, medical massage I do now and the fluff I did back in the 1970’s is monumental. Very few therapists have lasted as long as I because the burn out rate is so very high and great massage can sometimes be like heavy construction work. After all, it took you years to get hard and tight. Just look in the mirror. Does your head tilt to one side? Is one shoulder higher than the other? Do your feet point outward and the heel of your shoes wear out on one side? Did the “S” curve of your spine become a “C”? Do your shoulders or neck jut forward? Does your pelvis tilt down on an angle? This happens to all of us, it’s not just you.

So what we do and what I teach is to break up your muscular hardness and frozen, cold zones, then unfreeze your connective tissue, and finally go about opening up your energetic system (acupuncture system). This approach boosts your bodies healing capabilities by significantly increasing your internal oxygen storehouse. Our style of MEDICAL massage addresses your soft tissue pain and frozen gait with sophisticated soft tissue techniques. We are massage experts literally slowing down the aging process and keeping you way more flexible and young. It doesn’t happen overnight but it does happen! No one works on soft tissue more effectively than medical massage therapists and I trained an entire team of them.” In a survey by Research America, a medical—research advocacy group, 57% of adults said they’d experienced chronic pain in the last year, 84% of those who suffered pain said they would rate it at 4 or above on a scale of 0 to 10. Back and spine topped the list, followed by arthritis and joint pain, headaches/migraines, knee and shoulder pain. According Cherkin, Eisenberg in the April 2001 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine, massage is effective for providing long-lasting relief for patients suffering from chronic low back pain or pain in general.

Larry Heisler’s elite team of massage therapists are on staff at Providence! Integrated Health and Fitness in New Providence. Learn more about all our massages and all our services by stopping in at 18 South Street, or calling us (908) 898-0008. Why not make an appointment today? Let our elite massage therapy team take care of the tightness and stiffness that holds you back from doing and being the person you want to be.


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