Thursday, September 19, 2019

Let's treat your wrists - but ankles first!

So many of us have some numbness, tingling or even pain in our wrists. The more you need to use your computer, especially the mouse, more prone you are to any trouble in your wrists or in your thumbs. If these symptoms are left unattended for a long time, you could have ended up to a diagnosis called the carpal tunnel syndrome. While I certainly hope that you are seeking my help a long before you have that diagnosis, there is something worth trying before scheduling that surgery. The surgery should be ultimately the last choice and there won't be any harm done, if we try to resolve your 'tight' wrist in Kata's Way.

You know that wrist is connected to forearm. Hah, that's what I learned at the massage school. In my work that simply means that the first step to take care of wrists, is to treat the forearms, and the second step would be making sure that also the metatarsals (the bones on hands) and fingers are working the way they should. When we have proceeded to this point at the my treatment, it means that I have already opened the lymph on the forearms, discovered what is going on in your flexors, extensors and rotatores of wrist and most probably we have also done some movement therapy for your elbow to make sure that this hinging joint is functioning without any restrictions.

But wait a minute, before we can truly open up the lymph channels on forearms, they need to be opened on an armpit and chest. While I do that, I also check the tightness of your pecs (chest muscles) and their opposite forces which would be upper back muscles and shoulder rotatores. That actually means that I need to treat your upper back and spine, before we can concentrate to the forearms and wrists.  If you, like all the rest of us, have a slightly forward leaning posture, we should work on that before we proceed to the arms.

At this point I'll ask you again (it's on the questionnaire) or you just got reminded that you have actually have some discomfort in your low back. So, we'll take a quick look to that and find out that left and right side of hip muscles are kinda imbalanced and left (or right) hamstrings are awfully tight. While I work those hamstrings, I also notice same side lateral tightness in calf and we end up talking about how you broke or sprained your ankle several years ago and since that the one ankle has been looser or tighter or in the wrong position or shins has been aching or something else.

So, we make the treatment plan and start from that imbalance in the ankle and treat the shins, quads and hamstrings the next time. The third session is all about hips and some work on legs to be sure. On the forth session we concentrate to the spine and keep working on the posture in sessions five and six. Then, when you come back for the seventh time, we finally get into that forearm, which actually has already been so much better and numbness has already been dissipating significantly. I will still work with your arms, forearms and wrist for a couple of sessions, since we truly want to get rid of that pain and discomfort for good.

Basically this is my work with you: we'll start from somewhere, but eventually we need to touch every part of your body to make sure that different parts function in sync. Sometimes everything goes this smoothly, but many times I have told my client after the third session that we have reach the point where I'm not sure I can help you. And then I will do that again after the seventh session, if I still feel that I'm not delivering what you expect. This simply means, that treatment is a negotiation where I do my share and you do yours. I will give you my honest opinion and explain what I've accomplished and what leaves me questioning my abilities to help you in your current situation.

There is no guarantee in the bodywork, but as a therapist I will always try to find the underlying cause and you may discontinue the treatment plan whenever you feel like it. That is the way I work! My way in Painless, effective, different and time consuming, but it works. I don't deliver the schemed sessions since I never know what will happen ahead of time. So many times I have told a client that today we will focus your shoulders and then I have spent 60 minutes in the hips. This may seem that I don't know what I'm doing (half of the time I don't actually), but it also means that I have the skills to listen to your body and its needs. That's how we get results.

Welcome to Kata's Way! It's Balanced (whenever I am Balanced) and it's Painless.

That's the simple goal.

Monday, August 5, 2019

How did I get here?

The schools are getting ready to start a new semester, which means that it's time for the new cycle, the beginning of the (school) year. This is the time when I want to buy a new calendar even though my current one is valid until the end of this year. The beginnings have always been important and powerful times for me; I love fresh starts and  creating something new gives me such a joy and feeling of being in a center of things.

This past July has very much felt like a new beginning in my professional career. Here are couple of the reasons for these feelings: first of all, I have got a several new clients in July and that always refreshes my way of thinking. I love the challenge, and resolving some physical issues together with a client just feels extra good! The second thing that comes to my mind, is the fact that I (finally) got over the hump of turning fifty. I know it's just a number, but for some (hormonal) reasons, the past year has been pretty harsh for me. I have been struggling with some imbalances and it took me too long to figure out that not everything can be solved in the physical level. I have been taking care of me, I have been exercising, I have had a somewhat healthy diet and my family is here with me and everybody is ok. Still, I was exhausted, grumpy and in the surviving mode. Finally I decided to do something about it, and accepting hormonal (organic and natural) supplement has helped me to feel like me again!

The third thing that affects my life in every day, is the fact that I am Finnish! That might sound like a no-brainer, but the roots of the identity are pretty deep in me. You know, I am a Finnish teacher and my training for a massage therapist was not just that, it was the Traditional Finnish Way of holistic, therapeutic bodywork and multi-dimensional treatment. Being a Finn is my brand, my identity and my way of living. Back home I didn't ever think about it, but I had my colleagues and my professional networks to think things over. I was a part of the community in which everybody supported each others, and gave feedback or boost whenever you needed. I lost all that when I moved to the States. I re-created myself and my work (which wasn't easy) and I still take a huge proud of everything I have accomplished (like being able to write this post, which yet isn't without mistakes, but I get my message out there pretty easily) in the past 7 years.

That just brought me to the fourth circumstance: I have lived here for SEVEN years. I have already lived one big cycle in this second home of mine. That became very clear this summer when I spent four weeks in Finland being a tourist. Me -  a tourist -  in my own country! Every earlier visit that has felt awful and heartbreaking, like something gnawing slices out of your soul. But all of the sudden in summer 2019, for the first time, that was okay. I was able to give up an outer layer of my identity to make space for something new to emerge. I can be Finnish living in the US and I don't have to give up what I have learned even when I am starting to learn something new. I let go my pretty obnoxious adolescence and dug deeper into my soul. I found myself eager to return back home, to my current life, in the US.

So here I am. I am creating a new community, learning new style and having my life in order. We don't know what future holds, but at the moment I am full of positive energy, ready to conquer my career to the next level. Everything is changing while everything in my core self stays the same. I will be working next 20 years and future will bring us stronger and deeper Kata's Way. Still, that is the best and the most effective treatment that I have (or will) ever learned, because it's all about the Balance. I might have found a momentary balance in my personal life, in my physical body, in my work and all these other circumstances we call Life.

I am going to enjoy this Balance as long as I can. In my work I do sometimes know what I'm doing, but what's more important: when I have no idea what I am doing, my client's own ability to heal takes over! My job is to keep balancing. And taking care of myself. Balanced is Painless and sometimes life is too. Let's enjoy these moments!

Monday, July 1, 2019

Happy Summer!

I am back to Charlotte and back to work. My vacation in Finland was amazing! The weather was perfect, lower 70's with sunshine and I needed my (friend's) umbrella only once. The first week I was wearing my (sister's) wollen socks, but after that: pure joy. Well, and a zillion mosquitos in some places..

I have eaten all the Finnish food I have been craving, most of all fresh strawberries, Karjalanpiirakka (Carelian pastries) and Finnish hot dogs with Finnish mustard. The mustard is important, I don't really like hot dogs, but I do love the smell of burning them on fire. Did I mention mustard? And Beet Salad! Homemade goat cheese! Freshly harvested 'new' potatoes with pickled herring! Fresh pike perch from the lake!

I met so many friends from the different phases of my life and sat in the Saunas. All different kind of Saunas: smoke saunas, wood heated saunas and electrical saunas. Once on a floating sauna with hot tub where jumping to the lake was refreshing! Sometimes alone on my own pace, but most of the time with a bunch of friends, giggles, wine or cider and laughter.

I picked flowers from the ditches and meadows. I enjoyed sunsets and a full moon with a sun. Midsummer up North is always spectacular! The northern nature in June is something to look forward to: green, greener and greenest. I will be posting pictures in my facebook page and Instagram, so make sure you follow me!

I am just happy:

On summer time I usually work 3-4 days a week but will take a couple long weekends to spend some time with my family. I am happy be back home in North Carolina and especially happy to sleep in my own bed.

Text or call to get to my books and remember that this is Kata's Own Way and it's Balanced as well as Painless. 

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

The Big 2019

It looks like the year 2019 is a BIG ONE. In so many ways. Let me tell you.

Right before Independence Day 2019 it will have been seven years since my family, including me, moved to the United States. SEVEN years. In the mysterious life of mine, and so many others, seven year cycle is an important and meaningful period of time that marks change, renewal and (self-)reflection. That is how it has always been for me. As many of you also have been reminded (not that I have been complaining too much, right?) that I just had a big birthday, which really didn't go as planned, yet I survived. I'm not saying that I feel old, but I am experiencing that this life of mine has brought me so much more understanding and maybe even wisdom, but it sure has introduced me to some stiffness, longer recovery time and funny hormonal changes. But let's not get too deep into that this time.

Most of you know me as an energetic and straightforward, but also creative and enthusiastic person, and those of you who are close to me, also know that I can be pretty introvert at times. But, more than anything, I do need something to be excited about, to be able to thrive and go forward. That excitement has been missing for a couple of years and I have been trying to tell myself, that this period of calming down is desperately needed. Maybe it was; I needed my time cocooning and gathering my thoughts, since something strong and powerful is evolving.

I need the change to stay alive! That's the truth, so I'm happy to be in the beginning of a new cycle. I am creating a new, better, less sustainable way of living and working. It will include some self-reflection, but even more recilience and perseverance towards me and my own ways. I know what I'm doing and I will learn to do it in a less wearing way. My inner turmoil and learning process will have some effects to my clients: I will upgrade my skillset this year and raise my rates next year. I will bring more ease to my work, lessen the pressure I have taught myself to use and be more perceptive to my clients needs. That will not work for some of you, so I truly won't mind if you decide to find an another therapist (I will recommend one for you if needed).

I need to do this for me, to keep learning, to find the passion that was lost for awhile. I want to keep some variety in my work (like extremely interesting neuropathy work and frozen shoulder protocol), but my style of working will definitely lighten up and have more and more pieces of Ortho-Bionomy. Some of you won't experience any changes since I already have changed some pieces of my protocol, some of you will experience the big shift in their treatment plan, an all this happens because I can't physically keep working the way I have been past years. I just can't!

With my new style there's going to be some days that nothing seems to be working, and there will a lot of explaining what I do. It's actually pretty funny; I need to talk myself through some pieces where I usually tend to start pushing and forcing the tissues, verbalizing seems to help me keep focused at this point of learning process. Feel free to tell me if you need your relaxing time on my table to be quiet. I promise to do my best.

I will definitely explain more later, there is so much to learn! I feel like my whole belief system needs to be changed in a way. But nothing will change, that's the beauty of this treatment. I will always do my best to help you in your issues and aches. This is Kata's Way and that means Balanced is Painless. Let's make it painless for me too!

See you in July, I'm off to Finland for a month.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Welcome 2019!

Hello everyone!

I have updated my web pages (finally) to 2019 and here is some things I want you to notice:

My hours are Mon, Tue, Thu 9-4 and Wed 12-6. So, hooray, Mondays are back in schedule for a moment. I don't know for how long.

 I will be out of town April 15 - 18. I have a good reason to get away for a week, but I don't want to be reminded of it. Yes, I'll have A BIG BIG BIG b-day. But life goes on...

...because, I am beyond excited to go to Finland for the month of June! I'll be out of town June 2019. Can't wait. It's been two years, so it's time to go home and make sure that I don't forget my roots and my language.

I have started a huge learning path to become an excellent healer with Happy Body and Jessica Marks in Asheville. I will add some wonderful listening and calming abilities to my handwork in the future years. I need this so much and in so many levels: I'm finally excited to have found something that'll profoundly teach me something new, but staying in my own mind set. And I have found like minded, passionate and supportive group of other therapists to help me grow. The style is called Ortho-Bionomy and it really doesn't change the way I work, it changes the mindset I put to my work. My treatment will still be called Kata's Way, because that is my way, and it's completely Painless and Balanced. 

And remember, I can help you or your loved ones with variety of issues, here are some examples:


Frozen Shoulder or any Shoulder problem

Plantar Fasciitis

Head and Neck Ache  

I hope to see you soon, my pricing will stay the same for 2019. Book your appointment now, I am always happy to see some new faces with some new challenges for me to figure out!

This is going to be a great, and busy, year. (So busy that my voice mail does not keep up. If I don't call you back, please try again, my voice mail has kept some messages from me.)