Ambassadors of Massage

By Leslie Young
[Editor's Note]

One of my pleasures and privileges—and hopefully yours, too—is educating people about the benefits of massage and the legitimacy of the profession. I love being an ambassador for massage therapy.

My elevator speech was tested recently when I traveled to the Middle East. I was following my dentist father on one of his medical missions, this time in Egypt. Dad was determined to do a pilgrimage. So we did an all-night trek—including a two-hour drive, an extended hike, a couple hours on a camel, and 754 steep stone steps—to the summit of Mt. Sinai to savor the sunrise as Moses saw it.

Our angel in this adventure was a Bedouin guide named Medu who lives in a tent in the barren beauty of the Mt. Sinai canyons with his wife and 3-year-old son. He listened with a look of pure fascination as I explained slowly and carefully what I do for a living. The Bedouin teen who was translating for me looked perplexed. Finally, Medu nodded and said, “These people help other people stay healthy.” He got it!

Four days later, on a return flight out of New York’s JFK airport, I was seated next to a rabbi, an Orthodox Jew. Quite the academic, he sat there with his copy of the Torah open and quizzed me thoroughly about the benefits of massage. He actually took out a pen and wrote down when I mentioned the site.

So how’s your elevator speech on behalf of massage therapy? Do you see yourself as a brilliant billboard for the profession? I hope so. The passion that flows through your fingertips and the care you pour into every bodywork session are just the beginnings. Whether practitioner, vendor, franchise, or spa, we all reflect the profession and we need to team up to spread the word. About 58 percent of Americans have never had a massage. Let’s open up a new world of wellness for them.


Leslie A. Young, Editor in Chief