It is said in China that bodywork is reserved for the poor and the most wealthy. Acupuncture took training and therefore the poor often couldn’t afford the services of an acupuncturist, so they’d go to local massage therapists who probably had little training. It was widely known that the most skilled healers were gifted with their hands, and while acupuncturists could see many patients in an hour, a highly skilled bodyworker could only see one person at a time. Highly skilled bodyworkers were not only hard to find, but also very expensive, hence they were the providence of the rich and well-connected.

Bodywork is an umbrella term that refers to the use of one’s hands or other tools to work on a person’s body. Today it calls to mind a  Swedish or deep tissue massage you might utilize use to work out a knot in your back that you’d find at a spa. While these practices certainly have their place, the bodywork that I do is therapeutically based and focuses on addressing a wide range of health concerns from anxiety and stress to muscular pain—even fatigue and illness. My training is based around traditional Chinese bodywork, which is rooted in Chinese medical practice and theory, and Zero Balancing, which is a practice derived from osteopathic manipulation. Bringing modern ideas of the body and fascia together with highly regarded traditional Chinese bodywork creates a powerful synergy.

In most acupuncture sessions I include bodywork. The experience can range from nurturing and soothing for those who are fatigued and stressed to strong and powerful for those who have knots and muscular pain. Each patient is treated uniquely based on their needs and given the treatment that is right for them.   

Dr. Fritz Frederick Smith, founder of Zero Balancing gives an introduction to Zero Balancing.
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