Author Archives: David

Elementary Touch Education

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to share chair massage at a PTO fundraising event for our local Annie Vinton Elementary School. It felt good to be promoting positive touch in this era of such nasty news. For some subliminal … Continue reading

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Feldenkrais and Hanna Somatics for Maintenance and Pain Management

Jane Brody, the legendary health journalist for the New York Times, recently wrote an article extolling the virtues of the Feldenkrais approach to pain management and recovery. Lesser known is the work of Thomas Hanna, who introduced Moshe Feldenkrais to the … Continue reading

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A new textbook about touch and children

I met Janet Courtney in 2015 through a small working group that was exploring the feasibility of creating an interdisciplinary, international conference on touch. On so many levels I find her amazing. She is an internationally recognized expert in developmental … Continue reading

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The “Death” of On-Site Massage

[This piece was originally published in Massage Therapy Journal Spring issue, 1995. Only a few people will remember that “seated massage” originally burst onto the scene as “on-site massage” when the first massage chair came on the market in 1986. … Continue reading

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France recognizes seated massage as an occupational title

[Click to download a PDF of the press release version.] France recently became the first country in the world to recognize seated massage as an occupational category with a professional certification. On June 7, 2016, the National Professional Certification Commission … Continue reading

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What it is like to attend a TouchPro training

This is an email received after the April 2016 TouchPro Chair Massage Class at the Connecticut Center for Massage Therapy. It made my day. Hey there, David ~ Thanks for the memories, as the song goes. Just wanted to express … Continue reading

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The History Channel Features the Massage Chair

When I was first approached by The History Channel last July (2015) about filming a segment on the massage chair for a series on contemporary inventions and inventors, I didn’t get my hopes up. After all, how many of these … Continue reading

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The Genetic Roots of Massage

What are the evolutionary roots of massage. Is there a genetic basis? Continue reading

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What we need to know about touch

Skin stimulation (touching) is essential to maintaining physical, psychological and social well-being, according to an ever-increasing body of scientific literature. Since touch is the fundamental tool through which massage professionals interact with those who pay for our services, it seems … Continue reading

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Why Do We Touch?

One important characteristic of all touching is the intention of the person initiating the touching. Much of the time the intention behind the touch is not conscious or it is presumed. However, adding conscious intention adds a deeper level of … Continue reading

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Where Do We Get Touch?

Skin stimulation (touch) is essential to the development and maintenance of health and well being in every human. Why then has it been so neglected as a subject for legitimate inquiry except perhaps by poets?  The other four senses have … Continue reading

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Cuddle Clubs Monetize Touch

Professional massage practitioners are not the only ones who make money touching. A growing movement gaining traction in our disembodied world brings groups of unrelated people together for non-erotic touch interaction. Variously called cuddle clubs, cuddle parties or snuggle parties … Continue reading

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From Chair to Table: How to Convert Your Chair Massage Clients

This article first appeared in the June 2015 of MASSAGE Magazine. Chair massage often turns out to be just the right introduction people need to experience the joys and benefits of all varieties of structured touch. While not all chair … Continue reading

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Touch Education in the Workplace

(This article first appeared in the June 2015 issue of MASSAGE Magazine,) Over the past three decades American culture has become increasingly touch averse. While few question the importance of touch for the healthy development of newborns, infants and young … Continue reading

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Story Massage in Nepal

The reach of positive touch never ceases to amaze me. All it takes are some bold and visionary advocates, in this case from the folks at Story Massage UK working in Nepal. Read about this totally innovative program that empowers … Continue reading

Posted in In the News, Touch | 3 Comments

Touch As Nutrition

From the KindnessBlog comes a short but sweet article by John Tuite making the case that touch should properly be regarded as a form of nutrition. “Key in the front door at the end of a stressful day, we can … Continue reading

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Increasing Touch Sensitivity

From the Washington Post comes news of a simple study that demonstrated an increase in cortical stimulation as a result of using thumbs and fingers on smartphone touch screens. I look forward to similar research examining how giving massage alters … Continue reading

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Latest Stats on Workplace Stress

An article out today from The Atlantic outlines the conclusions of a recent working paper from Harvard and Stanford Business Schools on the impact of high workplace stress levels on employee health. "The paper found that health problems stemming from … Continue reading

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An Overview of Chair Massage Marketing

Here is a recent email from a massage student: I will be graduating in December and have to write a business plan. I need to decide how chair massage will fit into the plan but don’t have much direction from … Continue reading

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Getting Started in Seated Massage

Contrary to what many massage schools would have you believe, chair massage is not simply “table massage lite.” Any successful chair massage entrepreneur will tell you that it is a specialty. So the first step is to become a specialist. … Continue reading

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New Categories of Corporate Seated Massage Clients

At 31 years, there is little doubt The Walt Disney Company is the oldest continuing corporate supporter of seated massage in the world. Michael Neal began taking a stool around the Disney campus in 1982, providing employee-paid massage. When he … Continue reading

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Embrace Your Role as Touch Educator

Touch is good for us. While that may come as no surprise to the massage profession, research that helps us describe the underlying physiology of touch is a tremendous breakthrough. We can now tell our customers exactly why massage makes … Continue reading

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Seated Massage Success in the Workplace

This article originally appeared in the May 2014 issue of MASSAGE Magazine.   Seated, or chair, massage is alive, well and flourishing in the workplace, primarily because of two overarching trends: evolving public perception of massage therapy and the impact of the … Continue reading

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Massage Chair Inventor Profile

Sometime around 2008, New York-based photographer David Friedman flew out to San Francisco to include me in an online series of portraits he was doing on inventors. During the photo shoot he also recorded a video interview which recently appeared … Continue reading

Posted in Chair Massage, History, Videos | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Massage is Sensational

A recent article in The Atlantic about a phenomenon called ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) reminded me of how little we celebrate the purely sensational nature of massage. ASMR is a subjective sensory experience that typically includes highly pleasurable tingling … Continue reading

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