Online Classes


We select our roster of talented Tools for Touch presenters from all over the United States. Collectively, they represent a diverse range of expertise but all possess the same enthusiasm, and commitment to excellence in massage education. If you are looking for a specifc educator or presentation topic, visit the CLASSES and browse by presenter or modality. If you are a certified NCBTMB Approved Provider and wish to join the Tools for Touch online massage education series as a presenter, please feel free to contact us here.

  • Shari Auth

    Founder, The Auth Method

    Shari Auth is a licensed massage therapist and acupuncturist, and certified in Chinese herbology and the Rolf Method of Structural Integration. She has authored a book on forearm massage titled, "A Guide To Using The Forearms," and she has produced two instructional massage DVDs also on forearm massage called, "A Guide To Side Lying Position," and "A GuideTo Using The Forearms." Ms Auth is an approved NCBTMB provider, she teaches CE workshops and has designed a CE home study course on forearm massage. In her choice of instructional subjects Ms Auth focuses on subject matters that make giving massage easier on the practitioner's body.

    Click here to learn more about Shari in this Tools for Touch™ blog post, Expand Your Toolbox.

  • Tiffany Blackden

    Social Media Consultant

    Tiffany and Gary Blackden, who provide the massage instruction on the Couples Massage DVD, are Nationally Certified Massage Therapists. Their passion for life enhancement is reflected in their massage therapy practice, their community volunteer work and their concern for environmental stewardship.

    Together, they grew and sold a successful massage business in northern Virginia before relocating to Colorado. In addition to their private practice, they have published articles on massage and they conduct massage instructional workshops. Tiffany has used online social media fo build successful practices in cities across the USA., and she recently created the ProMassage Network to facilitate social media and networking savvy within the massage and bodywork community.

    "Our passion is working directly with our clients, AND helping bodywork professionals to experience the abundant practice they desire." - Tiffany and Gary Blackden

  • Kelly Bowers

    CEO, The Healing Core

    Kelly Bowers became fascinated with the business of massage when asked to teach business practices at her massage school in 2005. Before she became a massage therapist, she spent 20 years as a technical writer, a career she refers to as “professional explaining”. She found she could apply the same skills to teaching business practices to massage therapists: figure out how it works, explain it in a way that respects your students’ needs.

    Kelly has built a private practice from scratch -  twice. Along the way she’s figured out what works and what doesn't. She has applied her experience and skills to creating short courses about basic business skills – creating a business plan, bookkeeping, setting your fees, evaluating the health of your practice, deciding whether or not to accept credit cards, etc.  –  that massage therapists can use right away.

    Kelly finished her massage studies at the Potomac Massage Training Institute in Washington DC in 2000 and began teaching business practices at PMTI in 2005. She and her business partner, Kitty Southworth LMT, founded The Healing Core ( in 2010 and are NCBTMB approved providers.

    Kelly has taught business practices for AMTA-Florida, AMTA-DC, and at the 2013 AMTA national convention. She’s written quarterly business columns for the AMTA-DC newsletter since 2005. She also maintains a blog about the business of massage, This Touching Business ( and has a private practice in Washington DC (

  • Karina Braun

    Personal Body Maintenance for the Bodyworker

    Karina Braun has been in the massage therapy and bodywork field for 14 years. Her focus is training Massage Therapists to maintain their bodies with self-care and injury prevention techniques. With this in mind, she created The Braun Method, Personal Body Maintenance for the Bodyworker® a multi-faceted approach that includes techniques for proper body mechanics, warm-up, aftercare, and strengthening and stretching of the body to help massage professionals keep up with the demands of their careers and stay healthy.

    Karina also teaches how to utilize Reiki in order to balance the energetic body of clients. According to Braun, "my first hand knowledge includes experiencing a repetitive strain injury from doing barefoot deep compression massage. Feeling all the emotions that go along with being injured definitely expanded my empathy to help others in this field. Consistent maintenance of your body is absolutely necessary so you can increase your income and extend your career. "

    Her book,  Creating Peace with Your Hands is compiled from many hours of hands-on practical knowledge and a great deal of research on injury and prevention. Karina is a massage educator based in Las Vegas, NV where she practices reiki, craniosacral therapy, yamuna body rolling, and therapeutic massage. She also received Yoga Instructor Certification in 2001 from Yogamotion. Karina's company, Get In Touch is a NCBTMB continuing education provider and offers Massage CEU Courses in Las Vegas, Nevada, Texas, California, Colorado, Florida, and Louisiana.

  • Elaine Calenda

    Academic Dean, Boulder College of Massage Therapy

    Elaine Calenda was a pioneer in massage therapy education for over 30 years. She graduated from the Swedish Institute in 1979 with her CMT and gained clinical work experience with Dr. Richard Bachrach at the Center of Osteopathic & Sports Medicine in New York City. Elaine was an instructor at the Swedish Institute for six years and she was the Academic Dean at the Boulder College of Massage Therapy where she taught Sports, Orthopedic, and Medical Massage.

    Elaine contributed to the development of the AOS Medical Massage course and she participated in multiple research projects including: “The Effects of Massage for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome” and “Chronic Tension Headache.”

    Elaine will be remembered for her dedication to the advancement of the massage profession.  She was a member of the Massage Therapy Research Consortium. She also wrote for massage and CAM publications, designed anatomical charts and was frequently quoted as a massage expert by various health-related media venues. 

    We were honored have Elaine as a presenter during the first Tools for Touch™ webinar on June 6, 2011. Click here to read the Tools for Touch™ blog post,  Learning from the Pros: Elaine Calenda

  • Lauren Muser Cates

    Founder/Owner, Lighthold Massage Therapy & End of Life Care

    In 2003, massage therapy found Lauren Cates like a needle in a haystack.  She had never had a massage before she went to massage school.  If you had told her 10 years ago that she would be making her living providing massage for people with cancer and traveling the United States teaching others how to do it, too she would have laughed in your face…politely, of course.   She served, from 2005-2009 as the Clinical Supervisor for Hospital/Oncology Massage at The Teal Center at Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, VA and since 2010 has been president of the Society for Oncology Massage (  Lauren has an active private practice in addition to her duties providing and supervising massage for medically complicated, oncology and end of life patients at both Virginia Hospital Center and Children’s National Medical Center with a non-profit organization she co-founded in 2010, called Healwell.  She has participated in adult and pediatric oncology massage research, including writing practical protocols and she co-teaches a 9-day in-hospital training course for massage therapists that provides a unique opportunity to work directly with inpatients in the ICU, oncology and acute rehabilitation units. Lauren also writes a blog at

  • Ann Catlin

    Founder, Center for Compassionate Touch

    Ann Catlin, OTR, LMT is  recognized educator and author in the field of massage for those in later life stages. She draws upon 30 years of experience to guide healthcare professionals in reclaiming human touch in eldercare and hospice. She founded and directs the Center for Compassionate Touch LLC, an organization that offers Compassionate Touch® training internationally. She may be reached at

    Click here to read Cultivate a youthful (and wise) attitude at any age at the Tools for Touch™ blog.

  • Robin Fann-Costanzo

    Esalen® Massage Instructor

    Robin Fann-Costanzo has a background is in dance, yoga, and meditation and her massage work is a continuation of these practices. Robin uses her training in Esalen® Massage, craniosacral therapy and Breema bodywork, as well as her intuition to create a healing therapy that is unique and individual for each person. Her intention in every session is to create a safe and supportive environment to evoke the innate wisdom and healing powers of each individual. 

  • Chuck Duff

    Certified Thai Instructor (CTI)

    Since 2001, Chuck Duff has trained hundreds of basic and advanced practitioners in Thai Bodywork and Massage. Integrating his extensive background in Buddhist studies, martial arts, yoga, and western clinical approaches, Chuck’s Thai Massage DVD series offers massage and bodywork professionals a unique understanding of body mechanics, of movement without effort, and the use of core energy in healing. He is a certified Thai massage instructor and founder of the Thai Bodywork School of Thai Massage, an NCBTMB approved provider of continuing education.

    Chuck produced his Thai Bodywork DVD series based on his work developing and teaching Clinical Thai Bodywork, (CTB) a modality he created that blends the techniques of Thai yoga massage with the insights of Myofascial Trigger Point, acupoint work and a structural analysis of body function. This therapeutic modality (CTB) is highly effective in reducing or eliminating patterns of pain and restruction, often in cases that have failed conventional medical treatment. Chuck’s teaching emphasizes body mechanics, using core energy and sensitivity to the body’s language, and places each technique in context as to its relationship to Sen lines, effects on specific muscles and pain conditions.

    Chuck became a Certified Thai Therapist and Certified Thai Instructor (CTI) at the Luma Center with Dr. Anthony James, who was among the first individuals to practice and teach Thai massage in the US. He is certified as a Luk Pra Kob (Thai herbal compress) therapist by the Thai Ministry of Health in Bangkok. He pursued advanced studies in Thai massage and herbal compress application with Khruu Lek Chaiya in Chiang Mai, Thailand and Aachan Tawee of Wat Wiangkolok, Chiang Rai province, Thailand. 

    Chuck’s life-long experiences as a student, healer, teacher and bodywork professional also include studies in Kundalini yoga, residency in an ashram and attending Naropa Institute in Boulder, Colorado. As a yoga practitioner, Chuck has learned that Thai massage treatments enhance and accelerate his practice. He earned his black belt in Hapkido, a Korean monastic martial art, under Master Kwang Seek Hyun.

    Click here to read a Q and A with Chuck, A Sporty Summer: Ancient Greeks, Olympics + Thai Massage at the Tools for Touch™ blog.

  • Rhonda Funes

    Rhonda Funes, Professional Reflexology Educator

    A graduate of American Academy of Reflexology in 1988, Rhonda Funes was one of the first to study Integrated Reflexology.  As a Charter Member of the newly formed Reflexology Association of California, she was responsible for defining “Reflexology” and the scope of practice for reflexologists in the State of California.
    A State Certified Instructor of Reflexology since 1994, Rhonda has held teaching positions at the following institutions: American Academy of Reflexology, The California Shiatsu School of Massage, The Massage School of Santa Monica, Emperor’s College of Traditional Oriental Medicine and IPSB. Ms. Funes served as President of the Reflexology Association of California from 2010-2012.
    Certified by The American Reflexology Certification Board, Rhonda serves as private practitioner and tutor and works in close association with chiropractors, acupuncturists, podiatrists and holistic medical practitioners.  Rhonda Funes Professional Reflexology welcomes clients of all ages with a wide array of conditions to her lovely office just blocks from the ocean and beautiful Palisades Park in downtown Santa Monica.

    Click here to learn more about her DVD instructional programs, Reflexology, Vol. 1: The Feet and Reflexology, Vol. 2: Hands and EarsClick here to read How I Left Corporate America for Reflexology by Rhonda Funes at the Tools for Touch™ blog.

  • Lisa Gillispie

    Owner, Gillispie Partners in Wellness, Certifed CranioSacral Therapist, Restorative Exercise Specialist™

    Lisa Gillispie has a private practice in Columbus, OH integrating whole body alignment, Restorative Exercise™ and craniosacral therapy. In 1995 she fell in love with CST and decided to devote herself to specializing in this technique. In addition to completing Advanced CranioSacral with the Upledger Institute and becoming a Certified CranioSacral Therapist, she taught craniosacral therapy for Sacred Spaces Seminars (now The Neurovascular Institute) and now mentors other therapists around the world online and in-person. Lisa has also worked at The Upledger Institute as a visiting therapist in their intensive treatment program. As part of her continuing studies, Lisa became a Restorative Exercise Specialist earlier this year. She loves helping her clients understand how their alignment and movement habits impact their body and, most importantly, how they can help themselves when they’re off the table.

    An anatomy nerd, occasional knitter and personal growth junkie, Lisa gets great joy sharing her love of the body with her 4 year old daughter, who has been known to inform people that they should stop tucking their pelvis.

  • Val Guin

    Creator, Forearm Dance™ Massage

    Val Guin is recognized as a leader and innovator in the massage industry, through the creation of her best-selling DVD series, Val Guin's Forearm Dance™ Massage, Original and Essentials. She has been an instructor and a therapeutic body worker for almost three decades, focusing her private practice of 8 to 10 people a day on creating better posture and structural function, which creates more mobility and less pain within her students and clients. A popular seminar presenter nationwide, Guin also conducts educational seminars locally at her studio in Santa Monica.  Val is a frequent presenter at AMTA conferences and she is an approved provider for the NCBTMB for continuing education hours.

    "Val Guin is well-known and respected in the massage profession for her dedication to pain relief, for both massage therapists and clients. Her Forearm Dance Technique is a proven method of addressing client tightness and pain, while at the same time it alleviates the stress that a massage therapist's body can experience from doing multiple sessions in a day. Val's contribution to the massage profession is an important one."

    —Karen Menehan, Editor in Chief, MASSAGE Magazine

    Click here to Discover everyday joy: 10 self-care practices by Val Guin at the Tools for Touch™ blog. Take advantage of SPECIAL OFFERS on Val's popular Forearm Dance™ Massage DVD programs.

  • Allissa Haines

    Massage Therapist, Educator and Marketing Consultant

    Allissa Haines is a massage therapist with a full practice in Massachusetts. Her clients include desk jockeys, high school athletes, weekend warriors, and kids on the autistim spectrum. She is a member of both the ABMP and AMTA.

    Allissa’s blog for massage therapists discussing marketing, business skills and all-around awesomeness in the field of massage can be found at She’s also a contributor at The Massage Learning Network, a private marketing consultant, and a future ukulele recording artist.

  • Ryan Hoyme


    Ryan Hoyme, aka 'the massage nerd', has been a massage therapist since 1997 and a massage instructor since 2000. He started so that students who missed class could catch up on the material they had missed. His website provides access to all his information, ebooks and videos. He has more massage clips on YouTube than any other website, and his videos average 150,000 views a day. Ryan constantly works behind the scenes editing videos. He also has a weekly massage show interviewing the top names (and soon to be top names) in the massage therapy world.

  • Greg Hurd

    Director of Career Development and Outreach, Bancroft School of Massage Therapy

    Greg graduated from Bancroft in 1984 and is a certified Neuromuscular therapist, and Reiki II Practitioner. Additionally, Greg earned a Masters Degree in Expressive Therapy from Lesley College. During Greg's massage therapy career he has served as the Health & Recreation director at a retirement community, worked at the Bancroft Health Center and maintained a private practice. On staff at Bancroft from 1985-1989, Greg has been instrumental in developing the Internship program as well as teaching Massage Techniques. 

  • Dawn Lewis

    Owner/Operator, Full Circle School of Alternative Therapies, Developer of SMRT

    Dawn developed SMRT while she was owner and educator at the Cottonwood School of Massage in Aurora, CO. SMRT, or Spontaneous Muscle Release Technique, is a series of passive contractions that allow therapists to release muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissue. Dawn explains: “I found that SMRT was more effective than Neuromuscular therapy, while also being easier on the client and the therapist. Between teaching anatomy and SMRT, and working on many, many, people, I was able to fully embrace this knowledge and take my massage to new levels.”

  • Andrea Lipomi

    Continuing Education Provider,, Founder, The Young Thumbs

    A licensed and nationally certified massage therapist since 2006, Andrea Lipomi has been pampering tourists and the Who’s Who of Las Vegas for the past several years. She can be found performing five-star massage treatments in a gorgeous resort spa most days of the week, and spending quality time with her husband – also a licensed massage therapist – when she’s not up to her elbows in oil. Andrea enjoys hiking, potlucks, dark chocolate, and all things Depeche Mode. She is also a licensed esthetician, a founding member of The Young Thumbs massage blog, a CE Las Vegas partner, and an NCBTMB-approved continuing education provider at

  • Whitney Lowe

    Founder, OMERI (Orthopedic Massage Education & Research Institute)

    Whitney Lowe began his research into the complexity of chronic pain conditions and injuries over two decades ago. For several years, Lowe worked and studied with Benny Vaughn, a highly regarded founder of sports massage therapy. After working in several orthopedic treatment facilities, training in sports medicine, and developing massage therapy curriculums in advanced clinical massage, he wrote his first book and developed the Orthopedic Massage Program.

    His system of Orthopedic Massage is designed for massage therapists seeking to meet the needs of clients with chronic pain or sports, recreational, or occupational pain and injury conditions. In 1994, he founded the Orthopedic Massage Education & Research Institute (OMERI). He began to teach massage continuing education, emphasizing those skills needed most for treating orthopedic soft-tissue disorders.

    Research and publication are a priority for Lowe. His texts, Orthopedic Assessment in Massage Therapy and Orthopedic Massage: Theory and Technique, are used by massage therapy professionals and schools in their massage training programs. In addition, he is a contributing author to several books and his articles appear regularly in professional peer-reviewed journals and popular magazines, such as Massage Today, Massage & Bodywork, and Massage Magazine.

  • John Maguire

    Founder, Kinesiology Institute - Touch for Health

    John Maguire created the Kinesiology Institute in 1989 and has trained a wide variety of doctors, therapists, and world-class athletes throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. He has developed several professional training programs on how to use Kinesiology in a clinical practice to eliminate pain and optimize health and performance. John is the developer of the popular Kinesiology Certification and Mentorship Program, where many graduates have developed successful practices transforming people’s lives.

    Holding degrees and certifications in Holistic Health, Applied Kinesiology, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Postural Integration, Massage Therapy, Personal Training and Electro-Acupuncture, John draws from a breadth of knowledge and skill that he incorporates into his private sessions and courses. He studied extensively with Dr. George Goodheart, DC the founder of Applied Kinesiology and he worked closely for several years with Dr. John Thie, DC, the creator of Touch for Health.

    For more than 30 years, John has helped tens of thousands of people become pain free by identifying the root causes of their health challenges through muscle testing and energy kinesiology by empowering them to take action to create optimum wellness. He is particularly adept in the areas of pain relief, overcominging emotional issues, and nutrition, assisting his clients and students to live longer and healthier lives.

  • Jeff Mahadeen

    Structural Integrator and Owner, Muscular Wellness Institute and Treatment Center

    Since 1998, Jeff Mahadeen has been teaching hands-on massage techniques including Myofascial Release, Neuromuscular Therapy (NMT), Assessment and related sciences in schools throughout the USA. Jeff has also written school curriculum with topics ranging from Anatomy and Physiology to comprehensive therapeutic hands-on techniques.  He is a Structural Integrator and the Owner of the Muscular Wellness Institute Educational and Treatment Center in New Hampshire which offers over 250 CE hours in advanced therapeutic modalities.

    Jeff has worked for the following schools: The Somerset School of Massage Therapy (presently Cortiva Institute), Academy of Massage Therapy, Hesser College and the Swedish Institute. At each school, Jeff has taken a leadership role with curriculum writing and course development.

    Recognized as one of the nation's leading educators, Jeff has been asked to sit on a Job Task Analysis and Exam Committee for the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards for the creation of a new federal massage licensing exam known as the MBLEx. The MBLEx is now known as one of the gold standards for massage examination. Jeff has also worked with the ABMP in practice exam development and was asked to sit on the NCBTMB's Advanced Certification Commitee.

  • Teresa Matthews

    Owner, Health, Wellness and Fitness

    Teresa Matthews holds a B.S. in Health Sciences, is a Licensed Massage Therapist, Certified Personal Trainer, nationally recognized CE provider and a world champion athlete.  Ms. Matthews specializes in deep tissue and sports massage and rehabilitative massage and bodywork through extensive knowledge of kinesiology, strength training and stretching.  In 2009, she was awarded Sports Massage Therapist of the year by the Florida State Massage Therapy Association and in 2010 Florida Chiropractic Association recognized her as their Massage Therapist of the Year. After owning and operating a Massage and Personal Training School for 18 years, Teresa now delivers this specialized combination of bodywork to her clients at Health, Wellness & Fitness Professionals in Jacksonville, FL. 


  • Pat Mayrhofer

    Producer, Nature's Healing Stone Therapy™

    Pat Mayrhofer wrote, directed and produced The Nature’s Healing Stone Therapy DVD Series.  She has been a massage therapist and cosmetologist for over 39 years and she has been using stone therapy in her massage practice and teaching it since 1998. She is widely recognized as an international leader in hot stone massage education. Pat currently works with an experienced network of professionals to develop multi-disciplinary approaches to massage and spa treatments utilizing stone therapy. She specializes in training massage and spa professionals worldwide in the art and science of stone therapy. This timeless healing technique joins the art of massage with the thermogenic benefits of heated Mexican beach pebbles. Pat conducts over 40 seminars a year and travels around the globe with her team of stone massage experts to bring this art form to spas, clinics, massage schools, estheticians and salons.

    "Make your business more profitable by learning the right techniques with the proper equipment. Your clients will know the difference. Continue to learn as your stone massage practice grows.” - Pat Mayrhofer

    Take advantage of  SPECIAL OFFERS on Pat's acclaimed Nature's Healing Stone Therapy DVDs. Click here to read Stone Massage: A Recipe for Success at the Tools for Touch™ blog

  • Tom Myers

    Author, Anatomy Trains

    Thomas Myers studied with Dr. Ida Rolf, Moshe Feldenkrais, and Buckminster Fuller. Tom has practiced integrative bodywork for over 30 years, chiefly in Europe, the UK, and the USA. He incorporates many movement and manual disciplines into his practice and teaching. Tom is the author of the best-selling book, Anatomy Trains, which has been translated into six languages. Tom has published over 60 articles for trade magazines and journals and has produced a dozen video programs on fascial technique and dissection. He directs Kinesis, which offers professional and CE training worldwide. Tom lives with his wife, Quan, on the coast of Maine, and retains a strong interest in peri-natal issues, music, and sailing.

  • Heath & Nicole Reed

    Heath Reed has studied at the feet of some of the greatest masters of healing, yoga, meditation, and Qi Gong in North America, Europe, Asia, and the Pacific. Since 2000, Heath has team-taught bodywork and movement therapy with his wife, and inspiration, Nicole Errico, at local and national seminars and conferences, and has been published in leading massage publications. Their multidisciplinary seminars are technique-rich within the context that emphasizes "Presence is more important than technique."

    In addition to teaching bodywork, Heath teaches weekly yoga and Qi Gong classes and contributed to the creation of Healing Emphasis Yoga (HEY) and Five-Element Yoga Therapy. In all his classes, Heath blends traditional methods for the modern healer, with simple practices that build, restore, and transmit "vital life force" to foster wellness for therapists and their clients.

    Nicole Errico-Reed distills essential healing practices from her studies with masters across the globe and then teaches techniques that "Feel Good to Give and Feel Good to Receive." Together with her husband, Heath, she has pioneered multiple integrative courses, like Table Thai Yoga Massage, Medical Massage, Hands Free Therapies, and many others. Nicole and Heath have been referred to as a "cosmic couple", team-teaching across the country offering seminars influenced by their studies in Asia, Europe, the Pacific and North America. Through her uniquely modern application of ancient practices, Nicole helps therapists activate presence to augment the benefits in their bodywork.

    Nicole's training extends beyond bodywork through her work as a Doula and Yoga instructor. Her intention is to provide a mindful approach to the body that emphasizes the healing power of movement therapies to create a pain-free body. You can catch them both in action in their Table Thai Yoga Massage DVD, Smiling Organ Meditation Audio CD and in their book Table Thai Yoga Massage (in press).

  • Art Riggs

    Certified Advanced Rolfer, CMT

    Art Riggs is a Certified Advanced Rolfer® and massage therapist who has been teaching bodywork since 1988.  A lifetime of hard physical activity and high level athletic pursuits including ultra-marathons led him to bodywork, first as a grateful recipient, and later as a student. The fulfillment he experienced in both receiving and performing bodywork led him away from his graduate studies in Exercise Physiology at the University of California, Berkeley to a full time career as a Rolfer and teacher of Deep Tissue Massage. He has conducted numerous workshops for health spas and for medical professionals, including physical therapists, and has assisted in Rolf Institute trainings. 

    For the first ten years of his practice, he specialized in myofascial release at a physical therapy clinic where an interest in the treatment of injuries was cultivated. He has worked with several Olympic athletes, professional football and basketball players, and professional dancers and musicians to treat injuries and to improve performance. However, his teaching and his practice of working with the general population to provide a better awareness of their bodies and allow more ease and comfort in their everyday lives remains the most gratifying aspect of his work.

    "Art Riggs is one of the most awesome bodywork teachers in our profession. . . he's a great teacher who shares an enormous amount of knowledge and wisdom." - Lisa Mertz, PhD, LMT, Massage Therapy Journal

    Click here to read Distinguish Yourself from the Competition at the Tools for Touch™ blog.

  • Carrie Rowell

    Hawaiian Lomi Lomi Massage Instructor

    Carrie Rowell is a licensed massage therapist and internationally certified instructor who has been doing intuitive bodywork since the age of five.  She has spent the last 15 years studying various aspects of the Hawaiian healing arts with several master practitioners on the island of Hawai'i.   Since 1998 she has traveled all over the world teaching massage, sacred dance and women’s empowerment workshops.  She is the author of two dvds and a workbook on lomi lomi and will release dvds on Hawaiian Hot stone and Lomi Hapai (pregnancy massage) in 2013.

    Her workshops are approved for continuing education for massage therapists with the NCBTMB in the USA, the CThA in the UK and the Australian AAMT.  Her classes are hands-on, very fun and packed with techniques.  When she is not traveling to teach she lives in Pahoa, Hawaii where she offers immersion retreats.

    Click here to read a Tools for Touch™ Blog post, "You don't have to be a ballerina to learn this dance".

  • Melanie and Robert Sachs

    Owners, Directors of Diamond Way Ayurveda

    A certified Ayurvedic Lifestyle Counselor, Melanie Sachs is recognized internationally as a leading authority on Ayurveda. Her skills as both teacher and therapist have made her sought after by some of the world's leading spas and their massage therapists. Her book, Ayurvedic Beauty Care (Lotus Light Publications), is considered a must for those interested in the expanding field of natural and conscious body care.
    Her articles have been featured in magazines, including: Skin, Inc., Les Nouvelles Esthetiques, and Natural Health. Melanie has been a featured presenter at the International Esthetics and Cosmetics Conference, The International Congress of Esthetics,and  the Face and Body Show. She has been a teacher and consultant at The Chopra Center, the Greenhouse Group, and The International Dermal Institute worldwide.

    Robert Sachs has a background and training that is as conventional as it is 'alternative,' Robert's education in oriental philosophies and healing arts began when he moved to England during his teenage years. It was there that he began his studies with Tibetan Buddhist masters, and was introduced to the Asian healing arts including macrobiotics, shiatsu and hatha yoga. With a desire to further his studies both in bodywork and mental health, Robert went on to receive a massage license. Bob now works with physicians, clinics, hospitals, and private individuals, teaching them how to integrate contemporary scientific approaches with ancient wisdom traditions in the areas of stress management and preventive health care. He is a frequent guest instructor for the Chopra Center for Well Being in San Diego and lecturer in Tibetan Medicine for the Sino-American Rehabilitation Association College in Los Angeles.

  • Susan Salvo

    Founder, Louisiana Institute of Massage Therapy and Bodyworks Massage Therapy

    Susan G. Salvo owns and operates Bodyworks Massage Therapy by Susan Salvo and Associates, which she founded in Lake Charles, Louisiana in 1983. Ms Salvo is also founder of the Louisiana Institute of Massage Therapy in Lake Charles.

    Susan is a practicing massage therapist with over 30 years of experience. She loves to research information and write about it. She has written two best-selling textbooks — Massage Therapy: Principles and Practice and Mosby’s Guide to Pathology for Massage Therapists. She has also contributed works to other publications including Teaching Massage, Modalities for Massage and Bodywork, and Muscle and Bone Palpation Manual.

    Susan loves teaching. She teaches regularly at LA Institute of Massage Therapy and travels the country conducting workshops for practicing therapists. Her primary teaching goals are to help therapists increase their quality of client care and expand their therapeutic treatment options. Students gave her the nickname “Yoda of Massage” because of her broad knowledge and teaching expertise. But it's more than that…She strives to create an educational environment of discovery and engagement.

    Susan loves learning and frequently finds herself in classrooms as a student. She has a bachelors in education, a masters in educational leadership, and plans to start a doctorate this fall.  She loves collaborating with other therapists. Being on the task force for the Massage Therapy Body of Knowledge was one of her peak experiences. Achieving Board Certification was another. Susan Salvo was a featured massage historian with David Lauterstein and Benny Vaughn in the documentary, History of Massage Therapy in the United States. As Susan puts it, “That was a blast!” Ms. Salvo served on the advisory board for the American Pregnancy Massage Association and is a current member of the Society for Oncology Massage and the Alliance for Massage Therapy Education.

    Click here to read a Tools for Touch™ Blog post, "Build trust + communication with PPALM".

  • Elaine Stillerman

    Founder and Instructor, MotherMassage®: Massage during Pregnancy

    Elaine Stillerman has been a licensed massage therapist for over 30 years and a pioneer in prenatal massage since 1990 when she developed and began teaching the professional certification course “MotherMassage®; Massage during Pregnancy” both nationally and internationally.

    Ms. Stillerman is also the author of MotherMassage: A Handbook for Relieving the Discomforts of Pregnancy, The Encyclopedia of Bodywork, Prenatal Massage: A Textbook of Pregnancy, Labor, and Postpartum Bodywork and Modalities for Massage and Bodywork. She has also authored numerous articles on prenatal massage for massage magazines and professional journals and was the columnist for 3 years of “Womankind” which appeared in Massage Today. Elaine lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.  

    Click here to learn more about Elaine in this Tools for Touch™ blog post,  Be not afraid (of pregnant massage clients). 

  • Mario Valverde

    Co-Owner and Operator, Green Financial Services

    Mario Valverde is co-owner and operator of Green Financial Services, a tax preparation/planning and bookkeeping company, with a focus on working with individuals and small business owners.  With over 20 years in corporate America and 11 years as a massage therapist and teacher, Mario brings a unique perspective to what working massage therapists need to consider when tax planning and filing.

    Mario is a graduate of the University of Southern California with a background in finance and a graduate and former teacher of IPSB Massage School.

  • James Waslaski

    LMT, CPT Author & International Lecturer, 2008 Massage Hall of Fame Inductee

    James Waslaski worked 20 years as a paramedic, and in a trauma center, while teaching emergency medical courses. James served as Professional Relations Chair for Florida and received the 1998 FSMTA outstanding state service award. He also served as AMTA Sports Massage Education Council Chair from 1993-1997 receiving the AMTA National Officer Award. James was the 1999 recipient of the FSMTA International Achievement Award.

    As author and international lecturer he has pioneered deep pain free orthopedic massage, pain management, sports injury, and sports enhancement treatments. His unique structural and multidisciplinary bodywork approach has been taught in over a dozen countries.

    James has worked with collegiate, professional and Olympic athletes, including the 1996 Olympic Games and the New York Yankees. He has published articles, books, manuals, and a series of DVDs on sports injuries, chronic pain, and complicated orthopedic conditions. James has also produced a motivational audio series, highlighting success strategies of leaders in the wellness industry to help guide massage therapists to their true spiritual blueprint for success. James has been working with a major publishing company to publish Advanced Clinical Massage Therapy: A Structural Approach to Pain Management with hopes to bridge the gap between all health care providers throughout the world.

  • Earl Wenk

    Owner, Muscle Wisdom

    Earl Wenk has over 17 years of experience in the field of sports medicine, working as both a certified athletic trainer and massage therapist. In addition, he is also an NSCA-certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and a NASM Performance Enhancement Specialist.

    He is a graduate of the University of Michigan, with a degree in Movement Science from the Division of Kinesiology, where he also completed an internship program in Athletic Training. Earl has also taught courses in orthopedic massage, sports massage and human anatomy at a massage therapy school and currently provides continuing education courses in sports massage, functional anatomy and injury assessment through his business, Muscle Wisdom.

    Earl has been featured in MASSAGE Magazine, and currently writes the sports massage expert blog for the Massage Magazine online edition.  He specializes in working with athletes of all ages and skill levels -  from recreational runners to All-American collegiate, professional and Olympic athletes.

    Click here to learn more about Earl in this Tools for Touch™ blog post, Sports Massage for Everyday Athletes.

  • Kelli Wise

    Mountain Shadow Massage, Owner/Writer Massage Therapy World blog

    Kelli Wise BS LMP, is a graduate of Bodymechanics School of Myotherapy and Massage, specializing in deep tissue and therapeutic massage to help her clients lead an active, pain-free life. Kelli was also one of the instructors at Bodymechanics teaching business, ethics & communication skills to a new generation of massage therapists. Before Kelli became a massage therapist, she was an electrical engineer and engineering manager in the high tech world. Cites Kelli, “This has given me a tremendous insight into the stresses and injuries that are common in today’s work world. My work in the computer field led me to an interest in how to treat Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, and the dreaded “sore shoulders” complaints”.  

    Click here to read a Q and A with Kelli titled, "How a former geek embraced massage" at the Tools for Touch™ blog.

    “My 24 years as a design engineer provided me with a strong background in troubleshooting and science that is critical in helping me find the source of my clients’ pain. I have a Bachelor of Science degree (that’s the BS in my title) and am drawn to the medical aspects of massage”. - Kelli Wise