On Saturday July 28, 2014, I had the opportunity to present a workshop at the PAMA Symposium in Snowmass, CO. Martha Paterson, Occupational Therapist and Certified Hand Therapist and I gave a workshop entitled Occupational Therapy and Body Mapping: A Collaboration for Music Wellness. Martha and I met last year at the PAMA 2013 symposium. She attended my body mapping workshop last year and realized that body mapping would be the missing link for some of her clients. We were very interested and curious to know how we could collaborate with clients, and also how we could come up with a model for effective collaboration. We also realized that we lived 15 miles away from each other which gave us a lot of options. (like lunch meetings:))
In our presentation we talked about the many benefits of collaboration based on some research from the healthcare segment. We found a website that listed six fundamentals of effective collaboration to aid in its success that we presented as a useful framework to follow.
We came up with common language that can be used by the musician and the practitioners. These are more general terms that everyone can understand. Two examples were healthy practice and balanced sitting and standing. We also decided to call the client a performer or a musician, rather than a client or patient. We also did not want to define the person by the injury, but as a whole person. The terms make it easier to transfer information between performer and practitioner, and between practitioner and practitioner.
We talked about performer centered goals. Usually they are referred to as client or patient centered goals. This is common in the OT and PT world and it reflects what Andover Educators already do. An example of a performer centered goal would be to get back to practicing x number of minutes without pain. We made a point of saying we want to extinguish the mindset of being “fixed” and acknowledge that the goal can’t take precedence over the process. We stated that when the performer is actively participating in the process, it leads to better care, healing and movement.
Our next point was that we (performer and practitioner) have a common goal but a different method. In our two cases, Rehabilitation (Occupational Therapy) and Movement Education (Body Mapping). For OT, Martha came up with the simple process: resupply, realign and restore. For Body Mapping I came up with educate, integrate, and empower.
We next talked about acceptance; if the performer is ready to accept his condition, and all the underlying emotions that are included. Martha had designed a Cycle of Healing diagram for her OT students which we presented as a tool for understanding the performer. We talked about all the different stages of healing and where a practitioner might enter the cycle. I said that we as Andover Educators can work with a performer at any stage, for example if we are teaching a WEM workshop, a participant can be anywhere in the cycle. But if someone is seeking our help, the performer is most likely in the active engagement stage, ready to work it out. We said that different practitioners will enter at different stages. For example, physicians, psychologists, PT’s, Alexander Technique Teachers, massage therapists.
We next said the best way to collaborate is to get to know each other, whether it’s between two people or between a more expansive network. Martha explained what an Occupational Therapist does. Then I explained what Body Mapping is and how we teach it. I made a point to say that quite often a body mapping workshop is the gateway for musicians to enter into the music wellness arena, and the first step to finding help. (which is a good reason to collaborate and have a network of referrals) I also stated that one of the unique features of Andover Educators is that we are all musicians and music educators, and many of us have had to deal with some kind of injury or limitation, which we resolved with body mapping and other healthcare and mind body resources. Another example of collaboration.
Our next section focussed on the actual collaborations. For each one we started with the OT treatment, performer centered goal, stage in healing cycle, body mapping sessions, impact on performer and impact on each of us. There were four collaborations in which we identified the effect the injury or discomfort had on the body map.
After that we asked for some discussion on their collaborations and when do they refer. We talked about our collaborative network which has expanded to include Alexander Technique, Feldenkrais, Massage Therapy, Personal Trainer, Physical Therapy, Andover Educator, and Occupational Therapist.
We talked about our prospective social media outreach and some internet resources that could be helpful. Finally we ended with a short review and a hearty thank you!
We had a wide range of participants including OT’s, PT’s, MD’s, a chiropractic student, musicians, students from University of North Texas, a dentist, a singing professor, and others in attendance. There was quite a bit of interest in how we collaborated and what we found to be effective. Martha and I are looking forward to working with other performers so they can have the benefit of more than one approach.
If you are interested in more information, please fill out the contact form. Happy Collaborating!