Help me kick off the Online MT Journal Club

UPDATE:  It looks like we have a full roster for each of the first two sessions on 1/18 and 1/25.  But the plan is to keep doing these, so if this project interests you and you would like to stay informed – including opportunities to participate in one of those future sessions – send me an email at christopher.a.moyer@gmail.com and I will add you to the mailing list I am in the process of creating.  Also, if the Wednesday 3:30 PST / 6:30 EST does not work for you, please know that I plan on adding some variety to the schedule to accommodate as many people as possible.  -CM

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Are you a massage therapist, massage therapy student, or massage therapy instructor with an interest in science and in massage therapy research?  If so you may be interested in a new project I am launching, including the opportunity to be involved with it from the very beginning.

The aim of the project is to create an online Journal Club focused on massage therapy research.  There is no requirement or expectation that participants will be researchers themselves or have specific scientific training or experience – all that is needed is an interest in massage therapy along with an open and interested perspective toward science.

The Journal Club will take place online, live and in real time, using Google Hangouts and will be modeled on a “seminar” college classroom format intended to foster discussion among a small number of students.  Each session, scheduled for 90m, will be led by myself and include five to eight participants.  The host and participants will prepare by carefully reading the specific assigned article and considering issues and questions that they would like to potentially bring to the discussion.  The host, who will provide an outline of the article, will use the first 15-20m of the session to provide some perspective on the article and offer some considerations for the discussion to follow.  The remainder of the session will give participants the opportunity to put forth their questions, perspectives, and viewpoints.

Each session will be broadcast on Google Hangouts, so that nonparticipant spectators can observe and learn from the session on the internet as it takes place.  In addition, each session will be recorded and uploaded to a dedicated YouTube channel for later viewing by anyone.  If the project succeeds it will steadily create an archive of sessions that examines and reviews the most important massage therapy research articles.

I am organizing two sessions of the Journal Club in January.  The aim of these first two sessions is to have successful Journal Club sessions, but also to test the format, timing, and technology for the project going forward.  Eventually, if this project is successful, active participation will require a modest registration fee, but because these first two sessions will serve as a test of the project participation in these sessions is being offered for free.  If you are interested in this project and able to commit to participating at one of the following times (which includes a careful reading of the assigned article ahead of the session, of course), I would love for you to be involved.  I currently have several openings for both of the following sessions.

The first session will take place on Wednesday evening January 18th at 3:30 PST / 4:30 MST / 5:30 CST /6:30 EST and will focus on the 1998 American Psychologist article by Tiffany Field entitled “Massage Therapy Effects.”  This is one of the most important and highly-cited articles in the massage therapy research literature and a critical examination of it, and how it has influenced the field across the last 18 years, is sure to be interesting.  There is no need for you to track down the article – you can download it here.

The second session will take place on Wednesday evening January 25th at 3:30 PST / 4:30 MST / 5:30 CST /6:30 EST and will focus on the 2013 article in The Journal of Manual and Manipulative Therapy by Albert Moraska and Clint Chandler entitled “Changes in Clinical Parameters in Patients with Tension-Type Headache Following Massage Therapy: A Pilot Study.”  Treatment of headache with massage therapy could have great clinical value, but also presents unique challenges to researchers, all of which is sure to lead to interesting discussion.  Again, here is no need for you to track down the article – you can download it here.

The only requirements are that you 1) have an interest in the project and in massage therapy research; 2) have a reliable internet connection and are able to use Google Hangouts to log in; 3) can commit to logging in a few minutes ahead of the scheduled start time and staying with the session for its scheduled 90m duration; 4) can commit to giving the assigned article a careful reading and to bringing one or more of your own questions, viewpoints, or perspectives to the discussion.

Interested?  I hope that you are.  Please let me know if you would like to reserve one of the participant slots for one of these first two sessions.  Finally, if you have any questions about Journal Club, my plans for it, or any of the details, be sure to let me know.  You can email me at christopher.a.moyer@gmail.com .  I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Christopher Moyer, Ph.D.

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