Carrie Kopp was one of the winners of ABMP’s Massage is for EveryBody 2021 contest, and we wanted to share more of her story. Please join us in celebrating Carrie!
By Lisa Bakewell
“Many of my clients have extensive physical injuries,” says Carrie Kopp, in-residence massage therapist to the military community, currently living at Fort Meade, Maryland, where her husband is stationed. “[Their injuries] required me to advance my knowledge of anatomy and physiology, as well as re-evaluate massage therapists’ roles in the health-care system at large.”
Kopp says her clients are her proof that massage has the power to heal and advance wellness in a major way. “I feel proud to have a seat at the table as an integrative health-care professional,” she says. “Working with Wounded Warriors, DOD (US Department of Defense) staff, and military service members and families has deepened my massage practice on every level.”
And, after contending with her own long-term health issues, Kopp sees herself as an example to her clients. “After battling my own health crisis and recovering from an eight-year autoimmune disease, my story provides proof of the body’s extraordinary regenerative power and the hope that others can overcome their challenges to live a pain-free life,” she says. “The power of massage has truly transformed each and every one of my clients.”
Kopp is also a proponent of clients seeking long-lasting results outside of massage. “It’s really what you do off the table that improves your quality of life,” she says. “I encourage my clients to find out which modalities work for them, but I am a big advocate of meditation, yoga, holistic nutrition, and acupuncture. Self-care in the USMC (US Marine Corps) community is about shifting the ‘body-as-a-machine’ mindset to something more mindful.”
In 2020, Kopp became a certified yoga instructor to teach clients how to achieve the special relationship between balance, strength, and flexibility. “The future of my massage practice is ever evolving,” she says. “I am currently working on a series of yoga videos and guided meditations one can do at home, to prolong the benefits of massage. I would also like to be able to provide ashiatsu to some of my deep-pressure loving clients and am interested in becoming a certified personal trainer to learn how to properly strengthen certain muscles.”
Kopp also wants to extend her services to those recovering from accident, surgery, or illness. “I hope to see more massage therapists become entrepreneurs in the future or work alongside physicians in a clinical setting. I may create a course in the future to show other LMTs how to do just that.”
• Massage is for EveryBody is ABMP’s annual celebration of massage therapy and the philanthropic efforts of our members. Our 2022 event runs July 17–23. Read more about Massage is for EveryBody, and the guiding principles that drive it, here: https://www.abmp.com/massage-week-intro, and enter for your chance to win this year: www.abmp.com/massage-is-for-everybody-awards.
• To read the winning essays from 2021’s Massage is for EveryBody celebration, go to www.abmp.com/massage-week-awards.