Open to professionals who do hands-on work with clients on physical pain and/or movement. CEUs issued through NCBTMB
Chest binders are garments worn under the clothes in order to flatten the chest as a means of aligning a person’s internal gender identity and their outward gender expression. This course is designed to give massage therapists (and other professionals in related manual therapy fields*) a basic understanding of chest binding and teach key techniques to mitigate the chronic pain and specific complications often experienced by people who wear chest binders. Since massage can have a significant impact on the quality of life & health outcomes of clients who bind their chests, this training is a valuable skillset for therapists wanting to serve transgender, non-binary and gender non-conforming clients.
The techniques taught in this class are rooted in the structural integration approach and rely on a working knowledge of the fascial system. Brief explanation of the fascial system and the thoracic anatomy will be given but participants should have basic proficiency in anatomy and some prior exposure to the fascial system.
- Lecture and discussion section to discuss the responsibilities of providing transgender-affirming care and establish basic interpersonal skills essential to creating safety for trans clients.
- Illustration of the variety of binders available to people who bind and the unsafe binding practices that are binding-of-last-resort for many people without access to safe binders. Participants will be given the opportunity to wear a binder in order to have the felt experience of their clients
- Presentation on contraindications of serious complications in the musculoskeletal system and when myofascial massage is and is not well equipped to intervene.
- Hands-on teaching and work on classmates** of techniques to mitigate chronic chest, shoulder, neck, rib and back pain which result from chest binding.
- More hands-on teaching and work on classmates of techniques to mitigate chronic chest, shoulder, neck, rib and back pain which result from chest binding.
- Clinic providing free massage to transgender clients in the community giving the opportunity to practice the techniques on bodies impacted by binding.
- Debrief of clinic experience
*CEUs are generally limited to licensed massage professionals but other manual therapists are welcome. All CEUs awarded through NCBTMB, if you are not licensed under massage therapy, please consult your state regulations to determine if you will be able to receive CE credit for the course
**Participants will be practicing techniques on one another before working on transgender clients. This will require massage on the chest/breast area. Draping will be used to cover the body but people should be prepared to be touched in this area. Participants of all genders are welcome.
Date: Friday, March 10th, Saturday, March 11th, and Sunday March 12th, 2023
Time: 9:30am to 5:30pm each day
Location: Cortiva Institute – King of Prussia campus
211 South Gulph Rd. Suite 100 | King of Prussia, PA 19406
Number of Hours: 24
Instructor: Frances Reed
What to Bring:
- Note taking supplies
- An open mind and positive attitude.
About the Instructor:
Frances Reed, LMT is passionate about making holistic therapies safe for transgender clients by teaching therapists the interpersonal and technical skills to meet the unique needs of transgender clients. They’ve been a licensed massage therapist since 2011, using a structural integration framework to support people at all stages of gender transition. Based on over a decade of work with transmasculine clients, Frances has developed a set of techniques for assessing and treating chronic pain and discomfort in people who bind their chest as well as protocols for pre- and post- top-surgery care. They are the author of a forthcoming book on binding health and pain management, which is the first of its kind.
Frances teaches practitioners cultural competency skills that they need to provide affirming care to transgender clients. Since the January 2022 closing of their trans- and queer-centered wellness center, Frances is in private practice doing transition-related bodywork in Washington, DC. Frances is a graduate of Smith College and the Potomac Massage Training Institute and founder of Freed Bodyworks Wellness Center and HealthyBinding.com.