National Massage Therapy Awareness Week

San Francisco, CA – The American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine (ACTCM) is celebrating National Massage Therapy Awareness Week, October 18 – 24, 2009. Sponsored by the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), this week is designed to raise public awareness of the benefits of therapeutic massage and encourage people to take the extra time to care for their health through massage.

Founded in 1980, ACTCM offers affordable Asian Bodywork to the public through its Community Clinic located in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill. The college also offers certificate programs in Asian Bodywork (TuiNa and Shiatsu massage). Students who complete ACTCM’s bodywork certificate programs are eligible to apply for a Massage Practitioner Permit through the San Francisco Department of Public Health.

Tui Na massage uses traction, massage and manipulation in conjunction with the stimulation of acupressure points. It is used to treat, or complement the treatment of, many conditions including musculo-skeletal disorders and chronic stress-related disorders of the digestive, respiratory, and reproductive systems.

Shiatsu is a Japanese form of bodywork. The term comes from the Japanese words “shi” and “atsu,” meaning “finger pressure”. Similar to acupressure and acupuncture, shiatsu concentrates on unblocking the flow of life energy (“Qi”) and restoring balance in the body in order to promote self-healing.

Popular among all age groups, massage is effective for relaxation and stress reduction, as well as medical reasons, including muscle soreness/stiffness/spasms, injury, headaches, pain reduction, blood and lymph circulation, and improved immune system function. Massage has been shown to reduce blood pressure and heart rate and increase endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers.

The public interest in and use of massage and bodywork continues to increase every year:

  • Consumers make 114 million visits to massage/bodywork therapists each year.
  • Consumers spend between $4 and $6 billion dollars per year on body therapy.
  • 54% of primary care physicians and family practitioners say they encourage their patients to pursue massage and bodywork therapy as a complement to medical treatments.
  • 78 of this country’s 125 medical schools, including Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Georgetown, and John Hopkins, now offer courses in alternative medicine, up from 27 in 1995.
  • Many companies (e.g. U.S. Department of Justice, Goldman Sachs, G.E., Young and Rubicam, Motorola and American Airlines) are offering massage and bodywork therapy as an employment perk and as means of reducing stress and absenteeism.
  • The number of massage therapists in the U.S. is estimated at 220,000, including students.

For more information about benefits or massage, or ACTCM’s Asian Bodywork Certificate Programs, please call (415) 282-7600 x14. For massage appointments in the college’s Community Clinic, please call (415) 282-9603.

Click here to view upcoming ACTCM events.

About American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine
American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine (ACTCM) has provided affordable, quality health care to the public and trained professionals in acupuncture, massage and Chinese medicine since 1980. In addition to its graduate curriculum, ACTCM offers continuing education, public education, community outreach and clinical services in acupuncture and herbal medicine. ACTCM has been the recipient of many awards for its curriculum, faculty and clinic, and has been voted “Best of the Bay” by both the San Francisco Weekly and the San Francisco Bay Guardian. ACTCM is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine and is a private, nonprofit, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.