Sarah Lashley's interest in relieving the pain and symptoms caused by TMJD led to a career and thriving practice in massage therapy. Read Sarah's story!
What drew you to a career in massage therapy?
My husband was suffering from severe TMJD, and I knew with the right training I could help. I was looking for a class to take to teach me massage for his jaw, but none could be found without becoming a licensed massage therapist. I graduated from Chicago School of Massage Therapy: Cortiva in 2008 and six months later took a course on Precision Neuromuscular Therapy (PNMT) for Temporomadidbular Joint Disorders. I fell in love with the practical assessments, critical thinking skills and precise treatment PNMT emphasized.
How long have you been practicing?
I began working for a chiropractor out of school, but within two years, I opened my office, Somavida Bodywork, and have had my own full time practice as a sole-proprietor for three years now.
What do you enjoy most about your practice?
I love seeing lives changed. Knowing that people can smile without pain, pick up their children without pain, walk their dogs without pain warms my heart. A pain focused practice has been the defining part of my practice and guiding clients back to pain free living is priceless.
What are the challenges?
I would like to see clients more often to get them out of pain faster, but my full schedule and financial constraints for clients often make this difficult. I also attract difficult cases which challenge my skills and help me grow as a practitioner. I am working with a Bell's Palsy case currently and having noticeable success gaining movements in the face that had been lost for 10 years.
A typical day?
I love that each day is different. I see four to nine clients per day. Although I specialize in TMJD clients, only 25 percent of my clients receive intra-oral work, so I work on all different areas of the body as well. Each day is different, each body is different and each client's body is different every time they come. But, overall, clients come in with some sort of pain and leave with less.
Being an AMTA member.
I began attending local AMTA meet-ups right out of school. This local connection led me to my first business mentor, rental space and a whole host of friends and support. Being a sole-proprietor you can feel like you are alone in the field, but the AMTA community has been a huge support for me and my business.
One piece of advice?
If you want to be successful, be passionate about what you do and chose a modality that will help people in pain.
Watch and share Sarah explaining why you should receive regular massage and how to to find a qualified massage therapist »
View Sarah's profile on AMTA's Find a Massage Therapist Locator Service »