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Katrina Jones HHM Progress report
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Katrina Jones
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April 29, 2017 - 10:32 pm
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Module 1 Shoulders. Loving this course. Clear and easy to follow. Incorporated the shoulder techniques into my own back, neck and shoulders massage and got a great response from my clients. They felt it gave the shoulders a really nice stretch and 1 client suffering from pain in his neck and shoulders due to stress reported more freedom of movement and less pain afterwards which has continued now for several days. 

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Shama
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April 29, 2017 - 11:57 pm
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Hi Katrina, welcome to the Heavenly Head Massage course. I am glad to hear that you instantly had a good impression.

That's interesting- your son lives in Thailand. In which part of the country?

You mention you want to add Thai Massage to your repertoire. Actually the Heavenly Head Massage course is quite unique. You couldn't learn this in Thailand in any school.

Also please take a moment to familiarize yourself with our certification check list to make sure that it is all organized properly:

Certification Check List

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Katrina Jones
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June 17, 2017 - 9:46 am
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Shama said
Hi Katrina, welcome to the Heavenly Head Massage course. I am glad to hear that you instantly had a good impression.

That's interesting- your son lives in Thailand. In which part of the country?

You mention you want to add Thai Massage to your repertoire. Actually the Heavenly Head Massage course is quite unique. You couldn't learn this in Thailand in any school.

Also please take a moment to familiarize yourself with our certification check list to make sure that it is all organized properly:

Certification Check List  

Module 2 Sternum

Hi Shama apologies for the gap in posting, house move completed successfully and new massage room ready to go. I have been working through the modules so will post several in quick succession. 

My son lives in On Nut in Bangkok but we also spent a week in Chiang Mai. I wish I had known of you then and would have visited. Perhaps on another trip. 

I had never thought of massaging the sternum but of course it makes sense and it's an area where the muscles are used a lot and can be tender. One of my massage partners is a man so I didn't have to worry so much about inappropriate touching. He didn't enjoy it so much as the shoulders as he felt it didn't have much effect or was necessary. I thought this was maybe because he has a lot of tension and discomfort in his back, neck and shoulders and so any work in those areas is always welcomed. My female massage partner enjoyed the experience, which she didn't expect as being British she was somewhat reserved about working in the body region. I like that you can easily feel the areas in between the ribs to work on and give clients a whole new experience. 
 

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Shama
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June 18, 2017 - 1:20 pm
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Small world indeed! You can visit when you come again. I have been in Chiang Mai for 18 years.

The HHM course isn't really meant for effective shoulder work. For that we have another specialty course, Ultimate Shoulder Massage. However you can do amazing neck work with the HHM material.

Sternum and chest work feels unusual for most people since most therapists never touch anyone there. However if you look at it through eastern eyes, this is the area of the heart chakra, and energetically speaking very beneficial. Massage work doesn't always have to have a massive tangible result, but it can be perfectly fine to just feel 'heavenly'.

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Katrina Jones
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June 21, 2017 - 2:18 pm
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Module 3 Chest 2 

Both my massage partners enjoyed this module a lot especially the circling of the pecs and the twist. I do a lot of home visits, using a table not a mat so when doing the twist is there any special way I should position myself?

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Shama
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June 21, 2017 - 7:23 pm
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For most of the HHM techniques you can remain seated in a chair right behind the client's head. For the twist you need to stand up to get leverage. Then you have to make sure that you lift by shifting your body - not with muscle power. You might try to move a little to the side for the pull and see if that works better for you. 

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June 22, 2017 - 4:13 pm
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Shama said
For most of the HHM techniques you can remain seated in a chair right behind the client's head. For the twist you need to stand up to get leverage. Then you have to make sure that you lift by shifting your body - not with muscle power. You might try to move a little to the side for the pull and see if that works better for you.   

I tried this last night and it worked fine. I think I prefer doing the move on the mat though as the position of your legs makes you feel more in touch with your client, like doing a dance. I will try to get the same feeling into the move standing. 

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June 22, 2017 - 4:20 pm
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Module 4 Neck 1

As I do less work on the mat I am still practising the Wave. I love how the move flows through the shoulders to the neck. 

The warm ups are excellent. A great way to feel what is going on in the clients neck while the clients enjoy the different sensations. My table is a bit of a pain to alter in height so if I'm doing back work first and then some neck work (so not the whole HHM) I find the table is too high to sit comfortably behind and be able to rest my arms on my thighs. Am playing about with cushions etc to raise myself rather than lower the table. 

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Shama
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June 22, 2017 - 9:37 pm
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I used to work in a destination spa doing HHM exclusively. They had those electric tables where you adjust the height with a foot pedal. Boy, that was so convenient.

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Katrina Jones
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June 22, 2017 - 10:22 pm
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Module 5 Neck 2

I've been practicing the neck massages a lot as I have quite a few clients with stiffness and soreness in the neck and they love it. The technique to smooth the hair back is so enjoyable my short haired partner insists on me doing it anyway. It's so interesting working with people with short and long necks and being able to cradle an enormous gentleman's head securely in my hand. To get a lovely rhythm and feel confident in carefully moving, or holding still a clients head feels great for both me and them. 

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June 22, 2017 - 10:37 pm
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Module 6 Neck 3

The neck lift is one of my favourite moves of all and my clients love it. You can really feel the gentle stretch. Just sometimes though the neck barely lifts. I'm not sure whether it's because that particular male client had a very short, very muscular neck, or was tense or whether I hadn't got the technique quite right. Does this sometimes happen?

It took a while for me to feel confident about keeping the head centered when doing the index finger move but my partners feedback was good and I am used to it now. Likewise with the dropping the head back move. Have always enjoyed working around the occipital ridge and loved the add ons.

I love that with Thai massage you tend to use either your body weight or that of your client (like the head drop) to do the work. I've so many friends who have given up massage work as they found it too hard on their bodies. 

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Shama
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June 22, 2017 - 11:43 pm
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I would have never lasted 18 years in massage myself if it wouldn't have been for these Thai Massage advantages of working with body weight and the weight of the clients. I invested a lot of time and energy into refining these concepts as they are often not taught so well in Thai Massage schools, including here in Thailand.

Some heads are just harder to lift. Some are very heavy, some necks are really stiff - this does happen. Of course it is possible that you don't have the technique quite down pat yet, but even if you do, you will run into this issue.

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Katrina Jones
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June 23, 2017 - 3:25 pm
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Module 7 Neck 4

Again getting my own positioning correct is the big challenge as I can occasionally feel twinges in my neck and back. It's taken quite a bit of practising but clients are surprised at the ease with which their necks rotate after these moves. I'm loving that there is so much work on the neck as it is an area I am frequently asked to focus on. These stretches always make me think of  my own yoga work where with each breath you can stretch just that little bit further. 

Your tuition is so clear and I love that you point out pitfalls, such as making sure you avoid compression and produce traction. It often feels as though I'm right in the room alongside you. You always get a perfect view which is often difficult in a standard classroom situation. 

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Katrina Jones
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June 23, 2017 - 11:55 pm
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Module 8 Neck 5

My massage partner loved the sideways neck undulation and although I was a little nervous of the figure 8 he liked the stretch it gave him and after a few goes I felt more confident and got into a nice rhythm. My other partner found the stretch a bit too much so I did the wiggle and the lesser move and that worked for her. They both enjoyed the work with the occipital ridge. It's an area I like working on as I enjoy work there myself. 

I have used the neck work now on quite a few clients and am getting great feedback. I have also made a difference to a friend with a stiff shoulder using the shoulder and chest work. Really enjoying the comprehensiveness of this course. It's so much more than I expected. 

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Katrina Jones
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June 24, 2017 - 12:27 am
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Module 9 Ears

Apart from a little earlobe work I've never massaged ears before and was amazed at the amount of different techniques. My massage partners absolutely loved this and I can't wait to get through the whole course to start using this on my clients. 

I tried the difference between circling and finger rolling and the finger rolling got a definite thumbs up. 

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Katrina Jones
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June 24, 2017 - 6:28 pm
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HHM Module 10 Head 1

I enjoyed practising the different moves. I found I wasn't using enough pressure for my practice partner. It was tempting to just press harder but I remembered from a previous module to move back a little to increase the pressure of my body weight. 

My practice partner loved the variety of techniques and much preferred it to an Indian Head Massage he had had recently, so that was nice feedback. 

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Shama
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June 25, 2017 - 12:18 am
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I took an Indian head massage course once, and in my opinion it has some shortcomings compared to Heavenly Head Massage. One big reason is that the client normally sits in a chair where you cannot totally relax. The therapist is generally standing, which kills your ergonomics since you cannot work with your body weight or with the client's body weight - a big drawback. Also in this position you cannot do effective neck work. So I gave up on Indian Head Massage rather quickly.

It sounds like you are making great progress with the course material and, according to the feedback you are getting, you are on the way to become one of the star students of Heavenly Head Massage! Smile

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Katrina Jones
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June 28, 2017 - 10:38 pm
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HHM Module 11 Head 2

Thanks Shama. I'm absolutely loving the head work. It's much less daunting than the neck work. The hair pulling and moving is fun to do and my massage partner enjoyed it . She has long hair which made a change from my usual short haired partner. I had to remember to move my hand more off the head so I didn't get tangled or pull the hair and that worked well. At one point I was in a slightly uncomfortable position so moved and she said she could feel the difference as my hands and body relaxed. 

I had a wonderful experience today. One of my work venues is a market. Not ideal in terms of peace sometimes but I've had massages in the floating market in Thailand which I loved so I thought I could try and recreate that here in Spain. A lady came over who had recently had open heart surgery. She was feeling very out of sorts.  Her doctor had okayed massage but she was too sore still to lie comfortably on her chest for a back neck and shoulder massage. I suggested a shoulder , neck and head massage from the HHM. She loved the elephant walk on the shoulders and I then did an hour on the head and neck, really focusing my energy on healing. She was so relaxed afterwards with no headache and no neck pain and is coming back to me next week. I was so delighted to be able to do that for her, so thank you Shama!

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Shama
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June 28, 2017 - 11:40 pm
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Congratulations! HHM can do near miraculous things. It has been a real blessing in my life, and I have had many such wonderful experiences with it, and you will have many of them as well, I am sure.

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Katrina Jones
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June 30, 2017 - 3:28 pm
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Module 12 Face 1

This was a lot trickier than expected. I was taught face massage years ago but using my fingers more than thumbs and therefore with no head support from the hands. Also the client was sitting. I found keeping an eye on the position of my hands as well as working my thumbs hard workout first but as with all things practice helped. My partner liked the eyebrow work and the forehead elliptical circles but said it wasn't anywhere near as heavenly as the head massage. More practice I think.......

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