Thursday, June 18, 2009

A Long Time Coming

I am working on the web page today. Our web site started in October of 1996. 

It is kind of like opening up a time capsule looking at the older files. So much has changed and yet so much has remained the same.

And looking at those files makes me think I need to change as well. Back then we were desperately fighting not just to be perceived as legitimate but also to remain legal. 

What has changed is the amount of research that has been done on reflexology. And not just simple studies but highly sophisticated studies with functional MRI's and doppler sonograms have now been published. There are double blind randomized the gold standard of the medical world which seemed impossible back in 1996. 

What hasn't changed is the lack of research by certain members of the media. Lazy "journalists" who make sweeping statements about the lack of any real evidence still abound. They can't even type "reflexology research" into Google to find out if any research exists. 

And our dear friends, the skeptics who pontificate without any real investigation of the facts are still around. I used to fight with them on a regular basis but it became boring when they didn't present any real arguments. Really boring because they "knew" reflexology is rubbish intuitively. 

And I don't feel defensive anymore. I don't know when it happened but I loss the sense that either the journalist who hadn't  discovered Google or the know- it- all skeptic really matter anymore. People have been adopting reflexology into their lives in droves. 

The people spoke during this time. They  were less put off by these attacks than I was. They did what seemed to be natural. Try reflexology and see what happened. Enough apparently achieve results to make them "believers" and to turn reflexology a household word. 

the legal situation changed as well. Initially we were told by legal authorities that we may not be able to practice in all 50 states. We fought back from that with extreme sacrifice on all our parts to see reflexology wasn't wiped out by anti-prostitution laws and medical practices acts.

We are now down to 12 states that continue to hold the field hostage to silly laws that don't protect the consumer. New York and Florida are two of the most primitive states in regard to complementary therapies making absolutely no sense whatsoever. The consumer be damned. 

But what has changed is the almost daily calls from a poor reflexologist who was being harassed  by some massage board.  These boards were usually stacked with massage schools owners trying to hold onto a market share. A couple of times the massage board member/ massage school owners tried to force people out of practice without due process but instead used  raw intimidation. 

The consumer didn't matter to these boards. They were simply interested enforcing a monopoly granted to them by legislatures who found these laws appealed to voters worried about massage parlors. 

People are still trying to crack New York and Florida. But in general there has be more peace. We may still have backward thinking states like these two for awhile but they too will change.  

In a lot of ways we have made progress.  Research continues to be moving along with more NIH studies and more sophisticated methods. Laws are slowly coming in that speak to a field of study and not to "touching laws". 

Now I get calls from reflexologists working in hospitals and reflexologists participating in studies. My heart leaps when I hear of these successes.

 I have seen more massage therapists who do reflexology respect the field for what it is rather than as one of many techniques they employ. They have become a very positive force within our community. 

There will be more issues like New Hampshire and Texas which seemed safe but now are starting to slip. Someone will be trying to gain advantage by deceiving the public -it's guaranteed.  

So I am weeding out the defensive web pages and it feels good. The clutter of past issues is being swept away. 

We are here to stay. And we will continue to grow. 

Now back to the web site.  It needs a good scrub. 

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