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Manotick Massage Therapy Centre

Manotick's Therapeutic and Relaxation Centre

Massage Therapy for the Runner

(or the wanna-be runner)

March 2015


Run Season is fast approaching us! (Yes!) It seems that after a LONG winter we are all very excited to be getting outside and breathing the fresh spring air! We are too! At Manotick Massage Therapy Centre, we have, for the first time EVER, committed to a 3 mile run by registering for the Manotick Miler. The Manotick Miler is raising funds for Ottawa University Heart Institute. (for more information on the Manotick Miler, click here! While this may not seem like a big deal to some, it's a huge deal to us, with many of us not being runners (myself included in this). In true Massage Therapist fashion, I decided the next article should be on, well, running! Many of my own athletic decisions are carefully thought out and researched, so why shouldn't my pledge to run be? I researched many different training techniques, to breathing techniques and stretching programs as well. While many offer different advice and all claim to be the “best way to train” I came to the conclusion that there really is no better way to train than to listen to your body, respect what it is telling you, and with a little knowledge of some of the possible conditions caused by running, many will be running off with very few problems.


Why Run?

There are a lot of benefits one can have from running, including improved cardiovascular health, weight loss, improved confidence and disease prevention. ( Some runners report feelings of a runner's high post run, and I believe it! Many of my clients, friends, family members and myself report feeling much more energenitic and happy after a run or exercise in general. Who wouldn't want that?


Training and Why it is Important

Training is important when preparing to run in a race for many reasons. Sure, 5k isn't that intense of a run, people run 42 km marathons all the time. You could probably run a 5k race tomorrow and do just fine. You would probably be very sore after, have to walk a bit, but could still finish that run in decent time. If that's the case, why waste time training?

Training shouldn't be considered a waste of time. This was very challenging for me to grasp. All that time spent running? I could keep my house clean, do more of my hobbies, spend more time with my family. Truth is, there are hundreds of other things I COULD do with my time, but focussing on my training SHOULD be important when there is a run in the not so distant future. Training can help to reduce the strain on your body, conditioning the muscles to run better, faster, stronger. With that, comes decreased post run pain, better times, and happier muscles and joints. After our first training session, I could hardly walk! The pain in my shins was horrible. Luckily with my knowledge of the body, I knew this would pass, and after just the second training session, I felt great! It gets better, it gets better, it gets better! Trust the training, it gets better!


How Massage Therapy Can Help

There are many conditions associated with running. Massage Therapy can assist in maintaining these conditions, providing hands on care, and remedial exercises for the client. I would like to discuss 3 of the major conditions that commonly occur with runners.


Compartment Syndrome: increased pressure within one of the four compartments in the lower leg. The lower leg is divided into four compartments: anterior compartment, superficial posterior compartment, deep posterior compartment and the lateral compartment. Most commonly affected is the anterior compartment which contains the tibialis anterior, extensor hallucis longus, and the extensor digitorum muscles. These muscles are mostly responsible for lifting the foot up off the ground, essential in running. Overuse of these muscles as well as many other factors, can lead to Compartment Syndrome. Along with regular Massage Therapy treatments, Compartment Syndrome can be managed with deep moist heat, stretching, rolling and of course rest. (pg 424-5 Clinical Massage Therapy, Rattray and Ludwig)


Iliotibial Band Friction Syndrome: contracture or thickening of the IT band. The IT band is a tendinous sheath that runs from the greater trochanter area of the hip to the lateral knee, along the outer thigh. ITBFS can be caused by postural imbalances, prolonged sitting or repetitive activities involving flexion of the hip, ie running. Fascial work to break up thickening caused by repetitive micro-tearing due to repetitive strain, re-alignment of band fibres and focused stretching, along with at home contrast hydrotherapy, can reduce the pain and imbalances due to ITBFS. (pg 529-30 Clinical Massage Therapy, Rattray and Lugwig)


Tibialis Posterior Syndrome: repetitive strain of the tibialis posterior muscle caused by excessive pronation of the foot. TPS is mostly found in runners, mainly due to uneven footing. Here in the rural part of the city, many runners do not have access to trails or sidewalks, so we are on the roads, which are cambered to allow water run off. If a runner is running against traffic, the left foot has to pronate slightly to reach the lower ground surface toward the shoulder (roll outwards at the ankle). This causes a strain to the tibialis posterior muscle, causing it to work harder. Ensuring even footing, regular focused stretching and Massage will help to maintain the imbalances caused by TPS. (pg 436 Clinical Massage Therapy, Rattray and Lugwig)



Stretches to Benefit Runners

Click on the links below to view pictures of these stretches.


Calves- responsible for assisted knee flexion, plantar flexion of the foot, and internal and external rotation of the foot.


iliopsoas- a deep hip flexor which when strained can cause hip and low back pain


quads- group of 4 large muscles responsible for hip flexon and knee extension


hamstrings- group of 3 muscles responsible for hip extension and knee flexion.


glutes- group of 3 muscles responsible for assisted hip flexion, stabiliation and external rotation of the hip.



Running can be an integral part of your fitness. Treating your body right, regular stretching and awareness of some of the most common conditions associated with running can help you along your running career. Regular Massage Therapy visits during your training and race time can greatly reduce your pain, and increase your performance.



To book an appointment visit our online booking page!


To register to join Team MMTC our Manotick Miler team, or to donate,


In health, 





February 2015

If you have ever been disappointed by booking a massage treatment with an unregistered professional, you know the burn of not being able to submit for compensation via insurance. What else were you missing because the treatment wasn't provided by a Registered Massage Therapist?


Let's discover the MANY reasons why a Registered Massage Therapist (AKA RMT, Massage Therapist or MT) is the only choice you should make for massage body work. We will take a quick look into the schooling, examination process, and maintaining registration for Massage Therapists here in Ontario.


Before we begin, here is the “code” that all Massage Therapists must adhere to. Our Scope of Practice defines what Massage Therapy is, and what we Massage Therapists actually do.


The Scope of Practice:

The practice of Massage Therapy is the assessment of the soft tissue and joints of the body and the treatment and prevention of physical dysfunction and pain of the soft tissue and joints by manipulation to develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical function, or relieve pain. (Massage Therapy Act 1991) (


Becoming an RMT in Ontario; schooling

Many of my clients are shocked to find out I went to school for THREE full years to become a Massage Therapist. It seems like a long time they say! They are right, it was a long time, but in actual fact many of the colleges in Ontario that offer Massage Therapy offer a 2 or 3 year program. There is a lot to learn, and not just how to apply massage techniques. A competent knowledge of Anatomy, Physiology, Pathophysiology, Massage Theory, Hydrotherapy, and Professionalism and Ethics is equally as important as the actual hands-on portion of the profession. Many massage students have upwards of 25 hours per week of in-class study. The program is both physically and emotionally stressful, and only those who can manage these stresses are successful.


The College of Massage Therapists of Ontario; Standards of Practice and Exams!

The College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO) is our regulatory body. The CMTO was established by the provincial government to regulate the conduct of RMT's in the province of Ontario through the provisions of the Regulated Health Professions Act. ( ) The college's main focus is to protect the public,(that's you!) The CMTO has set out treatment and professional competency standards (Standards of Practice) that each RMT must uphold. These standards are tested by regulatory exams that each Massage Therapy Student must pass before becoming an RMT. For more information on our Standards of practice, please click on the following link. (

For more information on how the CMTO protects the public, please click on this link. (


Maintaining Registration; fees, insurance and CEU's


In order to maintain registration, each RMT must meet the yearly requirements set out by the CMTO. Each year, every member of the college must pay their dues. The fees collected are used to provide the public with the many different functions of the CMTO.


Standards of Practice:

Each RMT must also follow the Standards of Practice, guidelines set out to help create a minimum standard that every Massage Therapist in Ontario will meet. To view our Standards of Practice, click here: (


Code of Ethics:

Along with the standards is the Code of Ethics, designed to protect the public by ensuring each RMT will treat you with respect, dignity and of the same value as any other health care professional. To view our complete Code of Ethics, please click on the following link. (



All health care professionals need to obtain professional liability insurance. RMT's are included in this as well. Professional liability insurance helps to protect the healthcare practitioner in the event of a malpractice claim against them.


Continuing Educational Units:

You might have noticed that this RMT does Reflexology, and that RMT does Taping, but wonder why they don't all do the same things, massage is massage right? Well, yes, when it comes to techniques and standards, but Massage Therapists have made a life long commitment to their work, and have the ability to explore and learn new things! Every Massage Therapist is on a three year cycle, in regards to continuing education, and every three years they have to obtain 30 CEU's (equivalent to 60 hours of study). We can take courses, read textbooks, do research or write informative articles to spead the word about Massage Therapy, and expand our knowledge to better treat our clients.


Why an RMT is the right choice for you

In conclusion, we have learned that not only is an RMT able to issue you an insurance reciept to be compensated for your treatment, but we have delved into the educational requirements, the long haul that is school and exams, our standards that have been set out to protect our clients, our code of Ethics in which we treat by, and also that not only do we take courses because we are interested in our life work, but because we are required to maintain our knowledge and education. You would be hard pressed to come by an RMT that doesnt care about his/her work, or clients, because as you can imagine, those people wouldn't have made through college! If you are looking for a kind, caring and well educated person to trust to treat you with dignity, respect and a wealth of knowledge of the human body, ensure your Massage Therapist is in fact a Massage Therapist.


To find an RMT near you, click on this link. It will bring you to the CMTO's find an RMT search engine. (


If you would like to book a massage session at Manotick Massage Therapy Centre please click on this link to be brought to our online booking area. Please note that we only staff Registered Massage Therapists, and have an extensive interview process to bring you the very best care. (


In health,

Pamela Murray, RMT


Massage Therapy and Detoxification

with the use of Acupressure

January 2015


        With the healthy living lifestyle movement, many people are focusing on natural ways to keep their body healthy. Here at Manotick Massage Therapy Centre, we are dedicated to improving the general wellbeing of all our clients. We strive to provide client centred care to each of our clients. Staying up-to-date with the latest healthcare movements, including both Western and Eastern styles of healthcare. We believe the choice is yours, as to which type of care you would like to recieve. The following information is to help youmake an informed choice about your body, and to educate on another benefit of Massage Therapy.

       Before we begin, here are some definitions that will help you to decide if this type of treatment is right for you.

Detoxification is to remove harmful substances such as poisons or toxins or the effects of such from the body (Merriam-Webster,

Acupressure is a method of relieving pain or curing illness by pressing on particular points on a persons body with the fingertips or thumbs. (Merriam-Webster,


Who can benefit?

      Anyone can benefit from a detoxification massage session. An interview conducted before your session and a careful review of your health history can help prepare a specialized treatment for you.

What does the treatment do?

     The purpose of having a massage treatment with the focus on bodily detox is to rid the body of chemicals, toxins or free-radicals (a group of atoms that has one or more unpaired electrons produced by the body from natural biological processes or an outside source IE smoking, that can damage cells or alter DNA) (Merriam-Webster, The treatment would focus on opening blocked energy channels in the body and increasing blood circulation. A specialized treatment can also focus on relieving specific pressure points to help the function of certain organs such as the liver and kidneys, which help filter and rid the body of the waste that is released from the muscles during the treatment. The treatment would be of a calming nature, focusing on deep breath, to assist the lymphatic system in draining these chemicals, toxins and free-radicals, forcing them to enter into the blood stream to be accepted by the filtering organs, and to then be excreted from the body. Water consumption post massage will help with flushing these chemicals from the body.

Where is this treatment provided?

      This specific type of massage treatment can be provided at the Manotick Massage Therapy Centre by Pamela Murray, RMT. This treatment requires very little preparation on the clients part. However, if one is interested in this type of massage, certain lifestyle adaptations should be taken into consideration. Increased water consumption, decreased processed foods consumption and regular massage and acupressure treatments would help to ensure detoxification and optimal organ function. This would help to lessen the possible natural side effects due to the treatment, such as nausea post massage, post massage pain, and a continual build up of toxins in the body.

When should this treatment be provided?

     This treatment should be provided when the client is ready to make these lifestyle adaptations. One would need to make the commitment to try to live the healthiest lifestyle they can, for optimal treatment success. When ready, one could book their treatment with Pamela during regular clinic hours. Advanced notice of a detoxification treatment is required so further communication can be established prior to the treatment.

Why is this type of treatment necessary?

     Many of our clients express to us on a daily basis that they want to live a healthy lifestyle. Today, we notice that more and more individuals are moving toward natural cures for common illnesses. While we in no way provide assistance on detirmining a right or wrong decision on medicine vs. natural cures, we do provide a safe and supportive environment for you to express your healthcare concerns. Having extensive knowledge of the body and in both Eastern and Western medicine, Massage and Acupressure can assist and work with any condition you may have to help you live a happy, healthy and pain-free life.


     If you would have anymore questions regarding Massage Therapy and Acupressure for Detoxification, please do not hesitate to contact Pamela at Manotick Massage Therapy Centre.


Here are some interesting links I found when researching detoxification for the body. I hope you find them as intersting as I did!

In health,

Pamela Murray, RMT