What is it that we do with our hands?
That is the topic of a month long online conference with the International Consortium of Manual Therapists. Massage therapists, Physical Therapists, Osteopaths, Structural Integrators and Chiroprators from around the World have been meeting for two years in an effort to define just that…what is it that we do with our hands.
“(Taken from their first newsletter they sent participants.)The primary goals of the first half of the ICMT inaugural conference’s main session are to:
- Report and evaluate common treatment models used by clinicians and
educators within each profession and to describe and compare the clinicians’
rationale for why their treatments work, in other words, potential mechanisms
- Evaluate the nomenclature each profession uses to describe key
aspects of their techniques with the long-term goal of promoting a more
explicitly descriptive, science-based nomenclature to facilitate communication
and understanding of manual therapy interventions”
“THE OUTCOME IS FOR PARTICIPANTS to establish better communication within and between
manual therapy professions and basic scientists and consider the value of and begin developing a unifying nomenclature with more objective description of what the hands do during therapies. Understanding our lexicons and unifying key terms will assist in translation of research outcomes into practice and to translate practice insights to basic scientists to help shape future research. By comparing and contrasting clinician and educators’ rationales for therapeutic responses from manual therapies, we will better learn how similar or different manual therapy professions are and be able to update those models based on the latest evidence investigating manual therapies mechanisms of action which will be described and discussed during the second half of the main program.” (Taken from their first newsletter they sent participants.)
The Massage Therapy Documents are open for all to view AND comment on even if you are not attending the conference. Start with the Read first document and then look at the Scope of Practice Document, technique descriptions and the Glossary of Terms. You can also still register for the conference and view last weekends presentations in full and attend the rest of the conference which last for the rest of the month until June, 3, 2022. Here is the full schedule.
So after working on the definitions and outlining what it is that we think we do with our hands, scientists (not sure who exactly —people that are at the conference or people that are hired by the conference) will look at the research and see if it says the same thing.
How this conference came about.
This conference and ensuing organization was the result of a few people’s curiousity and inspiring creativity who dare to ask the tough questions. Paul Standley, a researcher had ” observed that most manual methods involve combinations of stretch, compression, shear and torque forces, and that: “despite being called different names, many of these techniques used around the world really create the same (or nearly the same) effects on tissues and cells.”He continued: “Practitioners of manual medicine techniques currently use individualized glossaries of maneuvers that ultimately may describe similar or identical treatment modalities. To enhance the construction of an evidence base to describe clinical efficacy our goal should be the establishment of a unified set of terms.” My personal journey that led to the crossroads of interdisciplinary manual medicine research: Serendipitous opportunities afforded a basic scientist. Paul R. Standley, Ph.D. Published:September 10, 2012 Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies
Paul Standley just wanted clarification on what is it that we do with our hands so he could study it! What we do with our hands needs to be replicated in the laboratory.
“One thing I have discovered with clarity during the Fascia Research Congress meetings is that all manual medicine practitioners (osteopaths, chiropractors, Rolfers, massage therapists, physical therapists, kinesiologists, etc.) stretch cells and tissues. Whether they call it stretch or not. They also compress cells and tissues. And torque them. And shear them, too. Many techniques, from my basic science perspective, can be relatively easy to describe in biophysical terms such as these. If they were, I
would imagine that despite being called different names, many of these techniques used around the world really create the same (or nearly the same) effects on tissues and cells. “My personal journey that led to the crossroads of interdisciplinary manual medicine research: Serendipitous opportunities afforded a basic scientist Paul R. Standley, Ph.D. Published:September 10, 2012 Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies
No single professional organization involved in manual medicine has fully explained the efficacy and mechanistic underpinnings of their techniques. There are many reasons to account for this including insufficient funding, insufficient publishing in peer reviewed journals, insufficient collaborations, insufficient personnel trained in these techniques, as well as basic science research skills and other reasons. In essence, limitations we all face Towards a Rosetta Stone of manual therapeutic methodology Paul R. Standley, Ph.D Published:July 02, 2014 Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies
Over the last two years, about 50 manual therapists from the Osteopathic Profession, Chiropractic Profession, Structural Integration Practitioners, Physical Therapists and Massage Therapists met from around the world to start working on the Rosetta Stone of Manual Therapy. Each profession met and worked on creating a mind map of just what it is that we do with our hands so it could be broken down into the Rosetta Stone. They first created an overall Scope of Practice document and then created a list of things that they do with their hands and mechanisms of action for each thing.
Then researchers looked at what the research says about what we do with our hands and presented their findings.
This information was presented at the ICMT Conference. This is just the very beginning.
History of Manual Therapy
The History of Manual Therapy was added to the topic to really show how much of what has happened in history has also hindered progress. These professions have fought turf wars over who has the right to use what techinques or methods and licensing/legislation in each profession has led to creating separate silos where each profession has practiced. It has led to scope of practice laws and other legislation that keeps practitioners in their own silos.
The whole goal of this Integrative consoritium on Manual Therapy conference is to being the process of defining what it is that we do with our hands so that that that can be studied more effectively.
Integrative Healthcare is helping to get everyone out of their silos and working togther to create better patient/client outcomes.