When I was preparing to teach my first Myoskeletal Alignment Techniques (MAT) Workshop, I was thrilled. Given the opportunity to spread what I built a lot of my knowledge and practice on, as a fan, I wanted to be able to provide at least 10 concrete things that I could quickly use to help spread Erik's Dalton's great work. They are in no particular order. Here are the first two, and I will be presenting the others in the future.
Once I ran the shipping and receiving department for a clothing company and my boss told me, "It's all theory until something happens. And that's where the rubber hits the road." His point was all the work of the company didn't matter unless I did my job, which was to ship out the product. In hindsight, he made a great point about the nature of our reality. It's what we actually do and provide to clients that matters. While being heavy on theory (There are 9 courses with 3 textbooks in the curriculum), MAT backs that up with hundreds of simple, efficient, and effective techniques. It is simply the best product on the market to help your clients with their pain and movement quality.
One of the things that I truly love about teaching MAT is that I am confident everyone in the class will be able to take home numerous things they can start practicing and implement right away. You can start using this stuff day one. After practicing and studying for over 25 years, I have not found anything like it. It is simple, direct, and effective. The techniques can be practiced at a very basic level or refined to a high degree, but both are effective and beneficial to the client. It just gets better over time. Each person you work on gives you more experience. Like data points from a scientific experiment, the more you practice it, the more you see the effectiveness and the client benefit.
My experience using Myoskeletal Alignment Techniques on my clients is that they know something is happening. Something got done to them, usually with them participating somehow. The session can look strictly like a MAT session with the client clothed on the table or a deep tissue massage with the client undressed and draped under the sheets. I have done all the techniques either way. You just need to practice it.
One of the first things people ask me about MAT, whether they are new clients or practitioners, is "What makes Myoskeletal Alignment different?" It took me a while to come up with a good answer, but here it is. MAT is an inclusive model, and not an exclusive one. Many methods are arbitrarily narrow and focus on individual pieces at the expense of the whole. MAT, on the other hand, expands this scope by allowing new things in to be examined for worth and doesn't create arbitrary boundaries that automatically exclude things. In this way it can be incorporated into other existing treatment models. Einstein said "Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." To me this exemplifies MAT.
Rather than having any specific set boundaries or protocols, Myoskeletal Alignment Techniques combine the soft tissue approach of Ida Rolf, the American osteopathic tradition of Phillip Greenman, and the whole body pattern approach to dysfunction of Vladamir Yanda. With this, you can address muscle complications along with joint neurology issues in the context of the whole body movement patterns. In addition, in some cases, rehabilitative exercise is also added for the client to reinforce the work that has been accomplished. This is all done in a safe, easy to learn, interactive and fun program that any manual practitioner can learn from.
If you are interested in any of the course material or information on workshops, check out www.erikdalton.com for more info. By far, in my opinion, the best class of the year happens in Costa Rica. Check out the video below for some highlights.
Be safe, be happy, and keep on studying.
Libert Myoskeletal Massage combines massage therapy and restorative exercise to treat and prevent injuries, as well as improve your physical performance.