Hi, I'm Rieko Kameda
Certified Massage Therapist
When I was a little girl, I loved giving massages to my mother who had asthma. I loved sensing her whole back ease down through my touch. I loved the feeling of positive reinforcement I was fostering in her body, mind and spirit. That feeling never left me even after many years passed. After a high-tech marketing and sales job and raising and sending my two boys to high school, I finally found the time to focus on what I love and share my passion for massage therapy.
My passion is helping people listen to their body a little better through therapeutic experiences that help them achieve total health in body, mind, and spirit. I see the body as a reservoir for emotional and physical memories and stress; therefore, my mission is to help relieve them using massage therapy. I use both western and eastern modalities to customize to your unique needs.
Every session starts with a short interview to ensure we both understand your body’s current needs. Every massage therapy session you receive would be different and unique. I listen to what you and your body are telling me. By the end of your session, you have better understanding of your own body. Following the self-care suggestions I provide will further help you to keep continue and improve your healing.
I am a certified massage therapist (CMT) with over 1000 hours of training through the McKinnon body therapy school in Oakland, CA.
A Chat with Rieko
Describe your general philosophy about health and wellbeing.
I think a healthy person has an optimistic outlook on life. You feel happy and your body does not prevent you from doing what you want to do. You feel optimistic about life and surrounded with something or someone to be thankful for. I believe that partly comes from when your mental or cognitive side, emotion side, and your body are well aligned. I also believe it begins with knowing yourself well, not just how you are doing, but also knowing that your thoughts, your feelings, and your body are well connected. What I do is make that connection a little bit stronger.
Tell me about your typical patient, what usually brings them to you.?
They usually have a concern, or pain somewhere in their body. For example, they have pain or a tightness in their shoulder, lower back, or neck. Something that they want to alleviate. So, I start work on those areas while at the same time I look at how their body is functioning overall. And then my first goal is to have my client aware of their body a little bit more than before they came to me.
So after the session, hopefully they learn something more about their body. And then once I find what I sense may be a cause of that unbalance in their body, I try to work with their body while helping my client improve their ability to address the issue themselves with better self-care.
What are you trying to accomplish with clients when you meet with them?
Overall, we are striving to get into a healthy state – that is when, mind, emotion and body are connected well. So, when a client comes to me, over time they gain a little bit more of a better understanding of how to listen to their body to make a better connection. Over time, their awareness shifts. And their actions follow. How they move their body or how they pay attention to their body improves. I provide them useful tips for self-care and the exercises they can do to maintain or improve their condition after the session so that they can continue the healing process at their own pace.
So eventually I want them to be able to better take care of themselves, without being dependent on somebody else. But in the meantime, I can help them to see or sense their body better. But I know sometimes it's hard to just do everything by yourself and with some guidance the healing process can be sped up. They can always come back occasionally, then we can work on different things together. For example, we can work on areas that they didn't know existed, because once we address the top layer of issues, then deeper issues can show up. When we get better at listening to our bodies we can hear and sense those issues better.
And can you describe for me, your, what's the experience like when clients come to you. What's your process for helping them to manage that issue?
When a client comes in, I first ask them to fill out the questionnaire which guides them to pay attention to what's going on with their body as they think through the questions. We then discuss some of the questions. I listen carefully to what they are saying about what they feel, what they think is going on with their body, and the biggest issue they have. Then I also do some testing and to see what kind of movement is causing the most problems or pain.
We then begin the therapy with me scanning through their body first, while we communicate along the way. I am sensing through my hands, hearing what they are communicating, understanding how they are feeling. Based on our interaction and what I learn from that assessment, we discuss a plan for therapy and begin treatment. My therapy is very individualized, so it looks different for every individual depending on their situation and where we jointly agree to focus our work first.
So, you mentioned the cognitive side of wellbeing. Where does that come into play during the therapy?
I ask a client the question right at the beginning what they feel is the most important issue they want to work on. And after I start sensing their body and ask them questions about how they feel, the main issue is often very different. For example, you come in saying I have a really tight shoulder, that's what you want me to work on. But then it feels a lot more like there is water retention in your lower body. Then when I start assessing, you can feel that the issue starts with what I identified, and it’s something you've been struggling with your whole life. But you didn't even think about mentioning it at first. So, there’s a disconnect between how you feel and what you initially thought about what’s causing it. In a sense I help them interpret their physical experience.
Great. So can you tell me about some of the things that you've studied or other training and experiences that have influenced your approach to healing and wellbeing.
I went to massage therapy school and became a certified massage therapist. I have studied both Western and Eastern modalities. For example, starting from the fundamental Swedish massage, I moved into the deep tissue, myofascial release, and from the more eastern side, I also studied acupressure and shiatsu and Thai massage. I was aiming to develop a more holistic approach. I also studied SLM massage (Steve Lockhart’s Myotherapy), Lymphatic drainage MASSAGE, Chinese cupping, and a Japanese therapeutic BDS technique among others.
But I'm continuing to take classes because it's interesting and fascinating to me. So I can have a little bit more broader understanding of how the whole process of healing works. All of them are dealing with healing the human body but they have a different way of looking at it. And I believe that the more different ways of looking at the same thing the better your understanding of it.
It sounds like you take a very integrated approach, and I'm wondering if you have an overarching philosophy about how these methodologies come together?
Actually, I use all the methodologies (also called modalities in massage therapy field), together depending on the client’s situation and needs. What they provide me are different approaches and a range of options that best suit the issue we are dealing with. The exact combination of modalities I use change each time, but the overall flow for how to choose the right modalities is the same.
I start by checking simpler causes then if those do not fit, I move to more complex issues: 1) Is it muscular issue? 2) If not, then internal organ issue? 3) Cognitive/nerve system issue? 4) Circulation issue? I go through these four steps one by one to figure out what is likely causing the issue, and then best modality to address it taking into account each clients wants and needs.
Get in touch
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