Last-modified: 25 October 2002
Maintainer: J. Blustein <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Copyright: (c) 1994-2001 J. Blustein. All rights reserved. See question 0.7 for details.
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* This FAQ list will not be posted after January 2003 *
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Some questions come up time and time again in alt.backrubs. Often
the questions are interesting and the answers are not immediately obvious.
However, each time one of these questions appears, much bandwidth and
reader time is wasted on repetitive responses. These six articles are
posted to alt.backrubs (and alt.answers and news.answers) every two weeks
in an attempt to answer the most common questions, so that discussion can
move on to more interesting topics.
These six articles will not be posted after January 2003.
Your suggestions for changes to these articles are welcome. Please
see question 0.2 for information about whom to contact. Question 0.3 is
about what changes are planned. The disclaimer is in question 0.6. All of
those questions appear below, in section 0. If you are new to Usenet you
might find questions 1.4 and 5.2.6 especially helpful.
Questions that have been added or updated recently have a * before
their number below.
Subject: List of Categories and questions
The questions answered here are divided into several categories:
Section 0 Administrivia and Acknowledgements
Section 1 General Questions
Section 2 Basics of Massage
Section 3 Novice Questions
Section 4 Professional Massage
Section 5 Other Sources of Information
Section 6 There is *no* section 6!
Each category is in a separate posting. Each posting includes a
brief list of the questions answered in it. This posting contains all the
questions in section 0 and a detailed table of contents for all the
Each question begins with `Subject:' on a line of its own. Users
with suitably equipped newsreaders can automatically skip to the start of
the next section, e.g. trn will display the start of the section when you
press ^G (control-G). Of course if your newsreader doesn't do this
automatically, you can still use a search command to find the next question.
To find the answer to question 0.2 search for a line beginning with
`Q0.2)', there will be only one.
Here is the list of questions in all the categories:
Section 0: Administrivia and Acknowledgements
0.1) Where can I get a recent copy of this document?
0.2) Whom should I flame for anything I don't like about this FAQL?
0.3) What is on the To Do list?
0.3 a) What projects are up for grabs?
0.3 b) What projects are people working on now?
* 0.4) Recent changes to this list
0.7) Notice of copyright
Section 1: General Questions
1.1) What is alt.backrubs about?
1.2) I have a question not answered here. Should I post?
1.3) What does this acronym stand for?
1.3 a) alt.backrubs acronyms
1.3 b) organizations
1.3 c) other acronyms and abbreviations
1.3 d) `Please, sir, I want some more.'
1.4) Help! I'm new to this whole Usenet/'net thing
1.5) What must I know about anonymous posts?
1.6) What should I do about 'net abuse (spams, scams and ads)?
1.7) Does anyone discuss anything here anymore?
Section 2: Basics of Massage
2.1) What is massage? What is bodywork and how do they differ?
2.2) What are some examples of massage, bodywork & related therapies?
2.2 a) Swedish
2.2 b) Shiatsu
2.2 c) Reflexology
2.2 d) Aromatherapy
2.2 e) On-site massage
2.2 f) Erotic massage
2.2 g) Trigger point and Myotherapy
2.2 h) Polarity
2.2 i) Myofascial release
2.2 j) Craniosacral
2.2 k) Reiki
2.2 l) Trager
2.2 m) Hakomi
2.2 n) Jim Shin Do
2.2 o) Neuromuscular therapy
2.2 p) Pfrimmer deep muscle therapy
2.2 q) Rolfing [coming soon?]
2.2 r) Alexander
2.2 s) Feldenkreis
2.2 t) Hellerwork
2.2 u) others
2.3) Where can I read about massage techniques?
2.4) Is massage a sexual technique?
2.5) Could I hurt anyone if I do something wrong?
2.6) What does this technical term mean?
Section 3: Novice Questions
3.1) How should I start?
3.2) Where can I find people to give/receive massages? [See also 4.3]
3.3) What can I do about ticklishness?
3.4) What oil should I use?
3.5) How can I get oils?
3.6) Is there anything I can do about my tired hands?
Section 4: Professional Massage
4.1) What about licencing, certification and professional training?
4.1 a) Books, magazines and other resource guides
4.1 b) What are the AMTA and the ABMP?
4.2) Professional issues
4.2 a) What's in the archive?
4.2 b) Emotional response considerations
4.3) Finding a good professional massage
4.3 a) How can I tell what I'll get before I get there?
4.3 b) How can I tell how competent a MT is before I pay them?
4.3 c) What referral services can I call upon for recommendations?
4.4) Advice for a recipient of professional massage
4.5) How much will it cost? Should I tip? Can I get it cheaper?
4.6) I've got the following symptoms. What do you advise?
Section 5: Other Network Sources of Information
5.1) Other Frequent Postings to alt.backrubs
5.1.1) The [extinct] backrubs exchange
5.1.2) The alt.backrubs archive
5.1.3) The World Wide Web version of the alt.backrubs FAQL
5.2) Other Network Resources
5.2.1) Reference: Frequent postings to other newsgroups
5.2.1 a) List of Medical FAQLs
5.2.1 b) Stretching and Flexibility FAQL
5.2.1 c) Typing Injuries FAQL
5.2.2) Reference: Other archives and collections
5.2.2 a) Sunsite Alternative Healthcare Collection
5.2.2 b) Internet/Bitnet Health Sciences Resources
5.2.2 c) Internet Resources on Alternative Medicine
5.2.2 d) Acu-Ki Institute
5.2.3) Reference: World Wide Web Sites
5.2.3 a) A basic guide to Aromatherapy
5.2.3 b) The Center for Reiki Training
5.2.3 c) Complementary Medicine WWW Page
5.2.3 d) Aesclepian Chronicles
5.2.3 e) The OrMed Mailing List WWW Page
5.2.3 f) An Illustrated Guide to Muscles & Medical Massage ...
5.2.3 g) Where is the archive for newsgroup X?
5.2.4) Discussion: Newsgroups, mailing-lists and gateways
5.2.4 a) misc.health.alternative newsgroup
5.2.4 b) BODYWORK mailing-list
5.2.4 c) PARACELSUS mailing-list
5.2.4 d) pdax.services.massage newsgroup
5.2.4 e) alt.med.fibromyalgia newsgroup / FIBROM-L mailing-list
5.2.4 f) tuite mailing-list
5.2.4 g) aromatherapy mailing-list
5.2.4 h) alt.folklore.herbs newsgroup
5.2.4 i) alt.aromatherapy newsgroup
5.2.4 j) SOREHAND mailing-list
5.2.4 k) iu610-L mailing-list
5.2.4 l) alt.reiki newsgroup
5.2.4 m) alt.health.massage-therapy newsgroup
5.2.4 n) More lists
5.2.5) Discussion: Other groups (not Usenet, not mailing lists)
5.2.5 a) BODYWORK Fidonet echo
5.2.5 b) Compuserve Massage and Bodywork Forum
5.2.5 c) Massagenet
5.2.6) Miscellaneous: Network resources
5.2.6 a) How to find the right place to post FAQL
5.2.6 b) news.groups.questions newsgroup
5.2.6 c) Usenet Info Center (the `Bible of Usenet')
5.2.6 d) Where is the archive for newsgroup X?
5.2.6 e) The Internet by E-Mail FAQL
5.2.7) Miscellaneous: Major lists of Internet and Usenet resources
5.2.7 a) Scott Yanoff's Updated Internet Services List
5.2.7 b) List of Periodic Informational Postings
5.2.7 c) Publicly Accessible Mailing Lists
Questions that have been added or updated recently have a * before
their number above.
Section 0 -- Administrivia and Acknowledgements
Subject: Where can I get a recent copy of this document?
Q0.1) The most recent version of this multi-part frequently asked
questions list (FAQL) is posted to the Usenet newsgroups alt.backrubs,
alt.answers and news.answers every 14 days.
Copies of major releases of this FAQL are kept in the alt.backrubs
archive (see question 5.1.2). The news.answers version of this FAQL can be
obtained via anonymous FTP from the rtfm.mit.edu site in directory
<URL:ftp:///pub/usenet/alt.answers/backrubs/faq> in the standard notation).
Only if you cannot use anonymous FTP should you retrieve it by sending
email to email@example.com with the command
in the message. See question 5.2 for more details.
Please note that this document has been produced for free
distribution. You should not have to pay anyone to obtain a copy.
Kjartan Clausen <firstname.lastname@example.org> has created a WWW version
of this FAQL. It is at <URL:http://www.ii.uib.no/~kjartan/backrubfaq/>.
Note that that version might not always be in sync with this version, but I
encourage you to use it anyway.
Subject: Whom should I flame for anything I don't like about this FAQL?
Q0.2) nobody (sic), of course! Any additions or suggestions or
discussion should be mailed to the FAQL maintainer <email@example.com> and
to Kjartan Clausen <firstname.lastname@example.org> who maintains the WWW version of the
This document is produced entirely by volunteer labour. The
maintainer is not a massage professional. All mail about the FAQL sent to
the FAQL maintainer will be acknowledged within seven days of receipt
(usually on the day of receipt). If you haven't received a notice of
receipt within two weeks then something is wrong.
Subject: To Do
Q0.3) This FAQL is mostly finished but additions are welcome. There are
still some things I'd like to have added or changed:
- I think the part about massaging towards the heart needs to be
rewritten, but I don't have the time
- some paragraphs that summarize all the advice about oils in all the
various files about massage oil in the archive
If you would like to volunteer :) to write some or all of the answers
please contact the FAQL maintainer <email@example.com>.
The file `faql.to-add' in the archive (see question 5.1.2) may
contain postings that I would like to have incorporated into the FAQL.
Please use e-mail to submit updates or additions to this FAQL to
<firstname.lastname@example.org>, and send a copy to Kjartan Clausen <email@example.com>
so that it can be incorporated into the WWW version too.
Here were some ongoing projects related to alt.backrubs as of
- Lorre Smith, a senior professional librarian, was preparing a proper
index of the archive. On 30 July 1996 I received a draft copy! That
project has been abandoned.
- Karin Muglach <firstname.lastname@example.org> and certified advanced
Rolfing Structural Integration practitioner Linda Grace <LLG3@aol.com>
might still be working on definitions of Rolfing and Alexander therapies
for question 2.2, but the Rolf Institute (See question 2.2q) are working
on their own description too.
Subject: Recent changes to this FAQL
Since 13 April 2001
Minor editing in Q1.7 (`Does anyone discuss anything here anymore?').
Also in Q1.7: specific mention of misc.health.alternative (before it
was just alt.health.massage-therapy and BODYWORK).
Sections 2 & 5: some of the longer questions now point back to the
complete list of subsections in this section.
Questions 2.2, 5.2.3, 5.2.4, 5.2.6: added a list of subtopics to the
beginning of the question.
Question 5.1.3 `The World Wide Web version of the alt.backrubs FAQL'
notes that it is very out of date.
Added reference to Section 0 after each table of contents (did not
updated last-modified date though).
Pruned extinct entries (and updated URLs) in question 5.2.3
(`Reference: World Wide Web Sites').
Q0.5) Many parts of this FAQL are almost identical to those posted by
email@example.com (Winkler) on 3 Dec 1992 (see the `faql.all' file in
the archive). Andrew Winkler <firstname.lastname@example.org> deserves a lot of credit for
the work he did. Specifically, questions 0.2, 1.1, 2.1-2.5, 3.1-3.5
and 4.1 began as questions in the original FAQL. Some of them have changed
very little from the originals (e.g., 3.3), some have undergone major
stylistic changes but are essentially the same (e.g., 2.5). Question 1.1
is completely changed.
The introductory portion of this article have been adapted from the
same section in the comp.lang.c FAQL (message-ID
<1994Jan01.email@example.com>, posted on 1 Jan 1994) which is
copyright 1988, 1990-1993 by Steve Summit. Steve Summit also suggested
corrections to several typos in every part except 4. Many of the additions
to question 2.2 (types of bodywork) have been adapted from a post by
MayaWay <firstname.lastname@example.org> for the Maine Massage Guild (message-ID
<email@example.com>). Yonina Chernick, RMT and Keith Grant
provided extensive help in adapting the definition of craniosacral therapy
in that question. Part of the answer to question 4.6 has been adapted from
postings by Richard Karasik (Message-ID
<firstname.lastname@example.org>), Terry Norman (Message-ID
<email@example.com>) and the answer to a similar
question (#41) in the 13 Mar 1995 version of the Usenet FAQL (message-ID
<D657pw.CpE@deshaw.com>, posted to news.announce.newusers and news.answers
on 28 Mar 1995 by Mark Moraes <firstname.lastname@example.org>).
The definition of fascia in question 2.6 is adapted from p.1045 of
volume II of _International Dictionary of Medicine and Biology: in three
volumes_, (c)1986 by John Wiley & Sons. The Editor-in-Chief is Sidney
I. Landau and the ISBN is 0-471-01849. The title of 1.3 d) (`"Please, sir,
I want some more."') is a quotation from chapter 2 of Charles Dickens's
novel _Oliver Twist_. Margaret Ann LaChance <email@example.com>
provided a guaranteed correct expansion for the ABMP acronym.
The FAQL used to include definitions of Alexander, Feldenkreis and
Rolfing that were provided by Karen Muglach <firstname.lastname@example.org>
from the book _Rolfing Movement Integration_ by Mary Bond (Healing Arts
Press, Rochester, Vermont, 1993, ISBN 0-89281-444-6). The book has been
reprinted in late July 1996 with the title _BALANCING YOUR BODY: A
Self-Help Approach to Rolfing Movement_. Those descriptions have been
removed at the request of the publisher.
The FAQL has been posted by J. Blustein <email@example.com> for many
years, but is now posted by a kind soul (or daemon) at another site.
J. Blustein remains responsible for its content. The following (in
alphabetical order by surname) are collaborating to edit and amend the
FAQL: Bill Arnett <Bill.Arnett@mindlink.bc.ca>, Kjartan Clausen
<firstname.lastname@example.org>, Corrina Perrone <email@example.com>, John Cole
<firstname.lastname@example.org>, julian collier <email@example.com>,
Keith Grant <firstname.lastname@example.org> and Lawrence Warnock
<Massage@ix.netcom.com>. Please send mail about this FAQL to
email@example.com, not to the other members of the `alt.backrubs team'.
The following have made suggestions that are incorporated into this
FAQL: A A Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Steve Albertson
<email@example.com> Axel Boldt <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Brian
Carter <Brian_Carter@pop.com>, Kjartan Clausen, John Cole, Marcus Cox
<email@example.com>, Keith Grant, ElGreene <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Kim
G. Kofmel <email@example.com>, Caroline Knight <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
Kevin Kunz <FootC@aol.com>, Margaret Ann LaChance
<email@example.com>, Lawrence F. London,
Jr. <london@sunSITE.unc.edu>, MayaWay <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Deanna McHugh, Lee
Murray <email@example.com>, Terry Norman <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Brother
Bernard Seif <email@example.com>, Stormwind <firstname.lastname@example.org> and Sam
Subject: Where is that pesky Disclaimer?
Q0.6) Right here:
All the answers in these postings have been included with good intentions
but none of them are guaranteed to be completely accurate. The
`alt.backrubs team' have endeavoured to ensure that the information in
these postings is correct and reasonably complete but cannot warrant their
suitability for any purpose. None of them acknowledge any liability
resulting from any mistakes contained in these postings or from the
application of anything contained in these postings. If you have a health
problem you should consult a health care professional (and we hope you get
Subject: Notice of copyright
Q0.7) All six parts of the alt.backrubs frequently asked questions list
(hereafter called `the document') are copyright by J. Blustein and have
been since 1994. All rights reserved. This is also true of all versions
that did not have this explicit notice but were posted by J. Blustein,
i.e. all but the two that Winkler posted. Andrew Winkler holds the
copyright on the two versions that he posted.
You are free to use the document for your own personal use. You
are free to distribute the document so long as all six parts are present
and none of them have been modified.
If you wish to distribute an incomplete or modified version of the
document you must obtain permission from J. Blustein <email@example.com> in
advance. I expect you will find the conditions completely reasonable, but
permission must still be obtained in advance.
Jamie Blustein <firstname.lastname@example.org>
No trees were destroyed to create this post.
Question 0.1 (above) tells you how to get a copy of this article.
You should not have to pay to get any (or all) of the six parts of this FAQL.