From the Background Paper for the Future of Bodywork Seminar
"Where Do We Go From Here?" held November 19, 2009
by Jack Blackburn, MTS-SD, LMP
Observing the current situation for new bodywork trainings
How has the situation of bodywork education changed in the last few years and what are the trends? Has the student population changed? How? How are the corporate schools influencing the future of bodywork? What is happening with proprietary work? How are proprietary trainings changing, and what about costly and lengthy program requirements for credentialing? How has our profession been influenced by the proprietary approaches like Rolfing, Trager, Feldenkrais etc? How has the licensure situation changed for bodywork trainings?
a. Academic programs
It is very likely that bodywork training programs and specializations will follow the direction of other care giving professions like nurses and physical therapists, becoming more academically oriented, even setting up bodywork colleges as with naturopathy, homeopathy, acupuncture, chiropractory, and osteopathy. If we move in this direction, well trained and well experienced bodyworkers will need to be at the core of the program design. There are various models represented by the above caregiving professions as they called on their own experience and developed their awareness of the elements and benefits of their approaches. This will require much research and further education of bodywork professionals beyond their basic training.
It is very likely that the specialties that now exist as proprietary modalities will become specialties within the whole of bodywork professional training including academia. Craniosacral, intra oral techniques, lymphatic drainage, visceral manipulation, positional release, emotional release, somatic medicine, movement awareness... to mention just a few, are all specialties that will grow into other awareness about the therapeutic benefits of bodywork. Persons who enter four year training programs, and beyond, will be able to move into many areas of healthcare where bodyworkers become the primary care providers.
For more information about this event, or biographies of the panelists, please visit the Future of Bodywork.