Hey Heather, why did you become a massage therapist?
I chose massage therapy because it incorporates my skills and values from my 20+ years as a sculptor and teacher. I like to say that I massage clay, and I massage people! My hands are my eyes. I can feel and see, in a sense, with my hands, kneading, molding and shaping to promote healing. It’s also very important to me to work with people and shape their experience, as I did when I was a teacher. I believe that my years of yoga practice helped me to develop the physical skills needed to offer high quality massage therapy to our patients.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
I enjoy helping people to feel better and understand that their symptoms are a form of communication from their bodies. I often see people suffering from pain, but they don’t understand what is causing it. Not knowing what is causing pain is a scary part of being unwell. During treatments, I educate people about their muscles, posture and movement and provide recommendations on how to improve them. I enjoy helping people get to the cause of their symptoms and solve them. I put together a plan with the patient that includes recommendations related to daily activity, self awareness and self care.
How do you stay healthy in your own life?
I eat a balanced diet of whole and minimally processed foods. I exercise almost every day. This is often in the gym, but I also love to walk in my neighborhood. I find it peaceful and nurturing to be outside among the trees and the river. I also practice yoga and make art. The creative process is very meditative. It focuses my mind on positive things and calms me. I work puzzles to relax, and I regularly get seven to eight hours of sleep.
What distinguishes you from other massage therapists?
My years of teaching experience help me to educate patients about their treatment and self care. Teaching has taught me to be patient and listen. This helps me to better understand and treat my patients.
I am certified in Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD). Primarily used for supporting a lymphatic system damaged by cancer surgery, MLD can benefit a wide range of conditions from autoimmune disorders to sinus pressure. MLD is a gentle but effective treatment for reducing swelling, relieving pain, and promoting deep relaxation.
I also provide Cupping Therapy, a unique ancient and Chinese medicine technique using cups and suction that can provide a deep tissue release for muscles. I use cupping to help reduce muscle tension, encourage circulation, and promote relaxation. Cupping also has a detoxifying effect on the body.
What do you love most about being part of the Herb + Ōhm team?
I love working closely with other professionals on the team and contributing my skills to the practice. I love that I can provide a piece of the healing experience for our patients.