Massage Therapy: Integrating Research and Practice, Edited by Trish Dryden & Christopher A. Moyer - A Review

This is a book many massage therapists have longed for. Massage Therapy; Integrating Research and Practice, edited by Trish Dryden and Christopher A. Moyer, fills an important gap in the field of massage therapy.

Written in a style and language that is intelligent yet readable, the book gathers current massage therapy research into one place for easy access. It starts with a historical overview of the field of massage therapy and early research and explores why we need research, suggesting directions for future research.

Several chapters are devoted to explaining different types of research methods and their advantages and disadvantages. This section is followed by chapters devoted to specific populations and conditions. Pediatrics, pregnancy and labor, neck and shoulder pain, low back pain, anxiety and depression, and athletes are but a few of the wide variety of areas covered. Each chapter starts with an overview of the subject followed by an examination of the available research pertinent to that subject. Recommendations for treatment based on what is currently known are suggested. Case studies, questions for critical thinking, summaries, references, and suggestions for future research are all included.

The following that is a section devoted to connecting research and practice, including a chapter on how to write clinical case reports and journal articles. Bringing research into massage curriculum is addressed.

The final chapters look forward to the future of massage therapy and massage therapy research. Attitudes, beliefs, expectations, and dilemmas are covered. Suggestions are made as to how to move the massage therapy profession forward.

Massage therapy has grown out of folk medicine and has only recently entered the world of health care and evidence-based practice. Most massage therapists come into the field with little or no science background. Reading, understanding, and evaluating research can be intimidating and seem overwhelming. Massage therapists who would like to incorporate research into their practice may feel discouraged by the difficulty of finding all the available research and then evaluating it. This book gathers into one place a summary of currently available research and helps the massage therapist understand it so that they can better incorporate it into their practice. It also points the way for massage therapists who would like to be involved in research themselves.

Each chapter is written by an expert outstanding in their field. The chapters are well-researched by individuals who not only have a thorough knowledge of massage therapy but also of science and research. The book is well organized, easy to use, and easy to read. Both the table of contents and the extensive index allow the reader to find information quickly.

This valuable resource should be on every massage therapist’s bookshelf and should be used as a textbook in every massage school curriculum.

Dryden, Moyer, and the chapter authors are all to be commended for their huge contribution to the field of massage therapy. Our profession owes a debt of gratitude to them.

Massage Therapy: Integrating Research and Practice is available through Amazon for $56 for the hardcover book or $17.60 for the Kindle edition. You can find it easily through the following link:

Massage Therapy:
Integrating Research and Practice


 Note: I have no financial interest in the promotion of this book.