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Definitions of  Massage, Bodywork, Energy, Alternative Medicine & Healing Modalities

No statements in the definitions below should be considered to be medical advice or taken as advice against seeking medical treatment, but are provided purely for their educational value. In the case of  serious acute, chronic or degenerative conditions immediately seek competent medical advice from your primary health care provider.
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Qi-Gong, (Chi-Kung) is an ancient Chinese exercise system that aims to stimulate and balance  the flow of Qi (chi), or vital energy, along the  acupuncture meridians, or vital energy pathways. A form of energy exercise, consisting principally of breathing exercises and patterns. Derived from the ancient Chinese healing art, it combines slow movements with regulated and directed deep breathing to facilitate the movement of Qi (chi) throughout the body to increase vitality. Qi gong is used to reduce stress, improve blood circulation, and enhance immune function, and treat a  variety of health issues.

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Rebirthing - A tool used with breath to restore vital life energy.  It is conscious breathing or energy breathing which transforms the emotional, mental, physical and spiritual bodies into a new form of understanding of the self.

Reflexology first known in the United States as Zone Therapy, is based on the belief  that there are reflex points on the feet (and hands) that correspond to parts of the body, e.g. internal organs and joints. Developed in the United States in the 1900s' reflexology has been known in China as a healing  therapy for many thousands of years.  Manipulating those parts of the feet (or hands) can have direct effects on corresponding parts of the body. Some proponents claim the ability to diagnose and treat illnesses of  these organs by appropriate reflexology treatment. Many certified reflexologists maintain that reflexology is not massage, but massage therapists familiar with reflexology frequently incorporate it into a treatment  session. (See also Ingham Method, and Foot Zone Therapy )

Reiki (pronounced "ray-kee" - also known as Usui Method) is reputed to be an ancient Tibetan healing system which was brought to light through the extensive studies and inspired vision of a Japanese Christian educator (monk) Dr. Mikao Usui in the late eighteen hundreds.  It was introduced to the west through Hawayo Takata, a Hawaiian born Japanese American woman who became the student of Dr. Chujiro Hayashi in the late 1930s. Reiki is a gentle hands-on healing technique to reduce stress, relieve pain, and facilitate healing. Practitioners hold that the vital 'life force' energy of the universe is channeled through the practitioner to energize the various body systems on levels that promote healing and wholeness.  Reiki a spiritual healing technique which does not involve manipulation of the the client's muscles or other soft tissue.  It may be performed on a fully clothed client or even directed over a distance. The ability to channel Reiki energy can only be passed to a student through a direct initiation (opening of the energy channels) by a Reiki master.

Relaxation Massage ( See Massage, Relaxation)

R.I.C.E. - an acronym for Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. This is the standard protocol for traumatic injury to any part of the body to be performed by first responders until the injured person can be treated by a primary care provider. The combined effects of these actions are to reduce bleeding, pain, swelling and further injury.

Rolfing.  This technique uses deep manipulation of the fascia (connective tissue) to restore the body's natural alignment, which may have become rigid through injury,  emotional  trauma, and inefficient movement habits.  The process, developed by biochemist Ida P. Rolf in the 1940's, usually involves eight to ten initial sessions, each focusing on a different part of the  body.

Rosen Method Bodywork - At its heart, the Rosen Method is simplicity itself.  Using gentle, non-intrusive touch, it works with muscles that are held and brings about physical and emotional awareness through relaxation.  This technique utilizes both manipulation of the soft tissue and communication with the client to promote relaxation.  Developed by Marion Rosen.

Rubenfeld Synergy Method - Founded by Ilana Rubenfeld, this method integrates elements of the great body/mind teachers F. M. Alexander and Moshe Feldenkrais together with Gestalt Theory and the practice of Fritz and Laura Perls, and hypnotherapy of Milton Erickson.

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