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  • Heather H.

Continuing Education Adventures: Oklahoma City

Great Times at the 9th Annual Myoskeletal Workshop with Erik Dalton.

Many of our clients know that continuing education is the foundation of Blue Monarch's Advanced Bodywork. We believe that furthering our education is an integral part of the effectiveness of our services, whether treating pain, stress, or posture. So, we pride ourselves on being the biggest massage nerds in town.

Last month Heather (co-founder of Blue Monarch LLC) traveled to Oklahoma City for the 9th Annual Myoskeletal Workshop with Erik Dalton. Erik Dalton, Ph.D., creator of Myoskeletal Alignment Technique, is an Osteopath, Massage Therapist, and studied with the top researchers in the bodywork field, such as Ida Rolf, creator of Structural Integration (Rolfing). The founders of Blue Monarch have been studying Myoskeletal Alignment Techniques (MAT) since 2012 when they ordered the first Home Study program and attended their first workshop the following year in 2013, again in 2014, 2015, and two workshops in 2021. Since then, we have slowly taken the science the course provides on human anatomy and biomechanics and the techniques based on that science, and we've integrated them into Blue Monarch's services. We consider MAT the core modality of Blue Monarch Advanced Bodywork. We’ve reduced pain, improved postural conditions for many clients due to this technique.

The theme of this year's workshop was" Relieving Pain Through Rhythmic Touch," and the man himself, Erik Dalton, alongside his Teaching Assistant and Senior Myoskeletal Instructor, Nate Fay, kicked off Day 1 with a musical demonstration on brainwaves. Lowering brainwaves from an alert Alpha state to a more relaxed, Theta state is the Therapists first task in a Bodywork service. When the brain is at higher frequencies, so are stress levels, and the body has difficulty healing and returning to homeostasis. When the brain's frequencies can be lowered through modalities like deep Myofascial Release, gentle Traegering, and rhythmic joint mobilization and stretching, it can return to Theta, making the bodywork session more effective.

This workshop was packed full of amazing techniques and focused on treating neck cricks, and arm pain, between the blade pain and low back & sciatica pain, but the techniques are only a small part of this fantastic learning experience. For every technique we explore the common compensations and patterns that lead to these conditions, taking a deep dive inside the human body's inner workings. We explore assessments to lead us to the causes of dysfunction to better apply these cutting-edge techniques in a gentle but effective application.

The most significant emphasis on the delivery of MAT is to create a positive neurological response by lowering brain activity and using the Graded Pain Exposure Technique (GEST) to lower the pain responses in the body. With the brain in a calm state and fewer pain receptors firing, the body will produce a D.O.S.E. (Dopamine, Oxytocin, Seratonin, and Endorphins) of feel-good chemicals to promote healing and relaxation.

Continuing Education Workshops are a great opportunity to learn from industry leaders, meet fellow therapists from all over the world, and even chat with our mentors. I love stealing a picture with the Great Erik Dalton; he is always more than happy to oblige. I have never met anyone so full of passion, ambition, or appreciation for the Bodywork industry. I was also fortunate to get some hands-on training from Paul Kelly, creator of Physiokinetix, a therapeutic neuro-retraining technique that we have big plans for in the very near future.

We always feel so fortunate for these educational opportunities and to learn, grow, and continue to be inspired as Bodyworkers and Massage Therapists. We can't wait until next year!

Check out our Socials for more pictures from the Workshop!

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