Continuing with our recognition to the massage therapists that provide an amazing work in our communities, we contacted Dave Reeman. He is a licensed massage therapist, Russian martial arts instructor, and movement coach who is certified in many different modalities of massage since 2010. He works with athletes and professional sports teams to supplement training and relieve injuries as well as improve flexibility, movement, and strength.
What inspired you to begin? Or how did your career come about?
I began to learn Russian martial arts and there’s a lot of Russian health practices involved with that. They had a whole bodywork component as well so I started learning that which inspired me to learn all sorts of modalities. I had injured myself a couple of times and some guys had helped me out and that showed me the potential for being able to help people. I was ready for a career change and it just kind of happened.
I was inspired by wanting to help others become pain free and able to move through life in a more flowing and easy manner. I was fascinated by Russian health and recovery practices that were used for their athletes and my love of martial arts. I studied in Russia and love how this has helped my father, me personally, and many others as well. I also work with brain injured patients a few times a week.
Can you describe the massage therapy that you do?
Yeah, basically I call it Russian bodywork. It’s kind of a fusion of a lot of different Eastern and Western techniques but it has a bit of a Russian flavor. So it involves anything from light touch to standing on people and anyplace in between.
What has been the most rewarding aspect of your job?
To be able to help people. I mean, I’ve worked on newborns to people in their eighties so just being able to affect a wide range of people and help them to avoid surgery and overcome the daily pain that they’re carrying around.
Well, to be quite honest, I’ve worked on a lot of different massage tables when I was at massage school and just going to other massage therapists and a lot other products just felt like ironing boards to me. I had a friend recommend the Earthlite infinity to me in 2010. I work on football players who weigh 350 pounds sometime and I’m standing on top of them, on top of the table. It was rated well, it’s wide, and I also have a Stronglite massage chair and they’re very comfortable and durable. I’ve had my table since 2012, and it’s going strong, it still looks brand new. Everybody comments on it and keeps asking me if I have a new table because it just looks so new.
What advice do you have looking for someone to enter the business?
I would say find a niche market, and pursue that. I work on athletes, but find what works for you. Massage takes a toll on a lot of people and they need to make sure to restore themselves rather than just working. A lot of people burn themselves out in just 3 to 5 years.
You said you work on athletes. Why do you like working on athletes?
Well, they seem to resonate more with the work that I do. But also, I work on a lot of football players and these guys are basically getting into a car accident every play. They’ve been getting impact injuries since they were 5 years old and no one has shown them how to get rid of that. They’re very good at lifting weights and putting tension into their bodies, but they’re not taught how to get tension out of their bodies. It’s very rewarding to work on guys and help them further their careers.
~Thanks and see you next time