Yvette Balderas – Massage Therapist

My affiliation with and proximity to Breathe Health Center allows me to be a resource for clients seeking to take charge of their health and take healing to deeper levels. I work among a group of dedicated practitioners, and can comfortably offer referrals to a range of healing disciplines, including but not limited to chiropractic, cranial sacral, acupuncture, nutritional counseling, as well as pointed healing information and exercise.

I would like to be a resource for those who are seeking an alternative to healing. Whether the healing is through massage, chiropractic care, cranial sacral or help with nutritional eating, I hope to be a sort of hub of health information so I can lead people to the next level in their healing.

Bio

In spite of decades of education, and years of professional experience, what most shapes my massage therapy practice is my empathetic touch to client’s pain and injury. Having lived through life-threatening trauma, and experienced the long months of physical rehabilitation, my hands understand the body’s need for a sensitive and appropriate therapeutic touch

After having graduated from UC Berkeley as a Miller Scholar, and working highly educational stints in the corporate and public health sectors, I realized my true calling and passion is helping healing with my hands and mind.

I enrolled at Emeryville’s The National Holistic Institute, and completed the 720-hour Massage Therapy certification program, as well as graduating from the 400-hour Advanced Neuromuscular Massage Therapy program.

Shortly after graduation from NHI in 2011, my life was turned upside down in unforeseen and profound ways when, I was hit by a car in downtown Oakland. My left femur was shattered, and I faced five months in a whole-leg cast and endless months of rehabilitation.

During my rehab I experienced an awakening to the power, possibility, limitation and needs of a recovering body. My experiences and contacts with numerous healers endowed me with a deeper and more clear understanding of recovering musculature than my neuromuscular therapy classes could ever have provided.

One of the healing elements I encountered during my rehabilitation is oxygen-enhanced air. Recently, information on the phenomenal health benefits of oxygenation has been creeping into the mainstream. I combine oxygen and massage to offer an unrivaled therapeutic experience that is the pinnacle of relaxation while also serving as a valued element of a wellness-maintenance and disease-prevention lifestyle.

Aromatherapy

The use of essential oils (which are extracted from herbs, flowers, resin, woods, and roots) in body and skin care treatments is known as aromatherapy. Used as a healing technique for thousands of years by the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, essential oils aid in relaxation, improve circulation, and help the healing of wounds. Aromatherapy diffusers are utilized to fill the massage room with the scent of the oils. Specific essential oils are blended by the aromatherapist and added to a carrier oil, such as almond oil, to be used during the massage. Each of the oils has it’s own unique characteristics and benefits. Use of this technique declined as the modern pharmaceutical industry developed. However, the French chemist Gattefossé revived the art by coining the term aromatherapy and by publishing a book on the subject in 1928.

 

Deep Tissue Massage

More than a deep massage, deep tissue/deep muscle massage are administered to affect the sub-layer of musculature and fascia. These techniques require more advanced training and a more thorough understanding of anatomy and physiology. The muscles must be relaxed in order to effectively perform deep tissue massage, otherwise tight surface muscles prevent the practitioner from reaching deeper musculature. It helps with chronic muscular pain and injury rehabilitation, and reduces inflammation-related pain caused by arthritis and tendinitis. It is generally integrated with other massage techniques.

 

Manual Lymphatic Drainage

The strokes applied in manual lymph drainage are intended to stimulate the movement of the lymphatic fluids in order to assist the body in cleansing. This is a gentle, rhythmical technique that cleanses the connective tissue of inflammatory materials and toxins, enhances the activity of the immune system, reduces pain, and lowers the activity of the sympathetic nervous system. The most widely taught and generally accepted form of this technique was created by Dr. Vodder of Austria and requires advanced training and precise movements. A more advanced technique is called  Lymphatic drainage technique, and is preformed by a more advanced specialist.

 

Massage

Massage is the practice of applying structured pressure, tension, motion, or vibration — manually or with mechanical aids — to the soft tissues of the body, including muscles, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments, joints and lymphatic vessels, to achieve a therapeutic response. Massage can be applied to all parts of the body or successively to the whole body, to heal injury, relieve psychological stress, manage pain, and improve circulation.

In most settings today, massage is performed on a soft table with linens draped over the body while the massage technician applies the appropriate techniques with oils and creams. However there are many “massage” forms, such as Thai massage, AMMA or orthopedic massage techniques that are preformed with the recipient fully clothed.

Medical Massage

Performing medical massage requires a firm background in pathology and utilizes specific treatments appropriate to working with disease, pain, and recovery from injury. The therapist may work from a physician’s prescription or as an adjunct healer within a hospital or physical therapy setting.

Myofascial Trigger Point Therapy

Based on the discoveries of Drs. Janet Travell and David Simons in which they found the causal relationship between chronic pain and its source, myofascial trigger point therapy is used to relieve muscular pain and dysfunction through applied pressure to trigger points of referred pain and through stretching exercises. These points are defined as localized areas in which the muscle and connective tissue are highly sensitive to pain when compressed. Pressure on these points can send referred pain to other specific parts of the body.

 Neuromuscular therapy

Neuromuscular therapy (NMT) is a significant methodology for assessing, treating and preventing soft tissue injuries and chronic pain. NMT, a series of manual treatment protocols based on the practitioner’s skill, anatomy knowledge and precise palpatory application, has found its home, not only in the treatment rooms of massage therapy, but also in occupational and physical therapy, nursing, chiropractic, osteopathic and physical medicine clinics worldwide.

Both holistic and traditional medicine are infused in NMT. There are a great variety of styles and many developers of the NMT, yet their theoretical basis of all the modern protocols are similar since they are each rooted soundly in physiological principles.

Pregnancy Massage/Prenatal Massage

Performed by a trained specialist, many methods of massage and somatic therapies are both effective and safe prenatally, and during labor and postpartum periods of women’s pregnancies. Prenatally, specific techniques can reduce pregnancy discomforts and concerns and enhance the physiological and emotional well-being of both mother and fetus. Skilled, appropriate touch facilitates labor, shortening labor times and easing pain and anxiety. In the postpartum period, specialized techniques rebalance structure, physiology, and emotions of the new mother, and may help her to bond with and care for her infant. Specialized, advanced training in the anatomy, physiology, complications, precautions, and contraindications is highly recommended, and many practitioners request referrals from physicians prior to therapy.

PNF

PNF is an acronym for proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation. It is not really a type of stretching but is a technique of combining passive stretching (see section Passive Stretching) and isometric stretching (see section Isometric Stretching) in order to achieve maximum static flexibility. Actually, the term PNF stretching is itself a misnomer. PNF was initially developed as a method of rehabilitating stroke victims. PNF refers to any of several post-isometric relaxation stretching techniques in which a muscle group is passively stretched, then contracts isometrically against resistance while in the stretched position, and then is passively stretched again through the resulting increased range of motion. PNF stretching usually employs the use of a partner to provide resistance against the isometric contraction and then later to passively take the joint through its increased range of motion

Sports massage

Sports massage consists of specific components designed to reduce injuries, alleviate inflammation, provides warm-up, etc. for amateur and professional athletes before, during, after, and within their training regimens.

Swedish/European Massage

One of the most commonly taught and well-known massage techniques, Swedish massage is a vigorous system of treatment designed to energize the body by stimulating circulation. Five basic strokes, all flowing toward the heart, are used to manipulate the soft tissues of the body. The client is disrobed to comfort, and covered by a sheet, with only the area being worked on exposed. Therapists use a combination of kneading, rolling, vibrational, percussive, and tapping movements, with the application of oil, to reduce friction on the skin. The many benefits of Swedish massage may include generalized relaxation, dissolution of scar tissue adhesions, and improved circulation, which may speed healing and reduce swelling from injury.

Trigger point myotherapy

Trigger point myotherapy is a noninvasive therapeutic modality for the relief and control of myofascial pain and dysfunction. The goal of treatment is the client’s recovery from or a significant reduction in myofascial pain. The treatment goal is achieved through a systematized approach. Treatment consists of trigger point compression, myomassage, passive stretching, and a regime of corrective exercises. Success may be measured subjectively by the level of pain reduction experienced by the client and objectively through increased range of motion, strength, endurance, and other measures of improved function. Trigger point myotherapy relies heavily on client-therapist interaction, including verbal and nonverbal elements. The myotherapist encourages the client to be personally responsible for their improvement, with attention to such factors as nutritional intake, stress, proper exercises, mechanical abnormalities, and other physical components. These elements protect the client from delayed diagnosis, delayed treatment, or contraindicated treatment, which are the concerns of first order. Trigger point myotherapy is an integrating approach to myofascial pain and dysfunction.

Tui na

Tui na is an ancient Chinese system of manual therapeutics with a wide range of techniques and indications. While Traditional Chinese Medical precepts form its theoretical basis, clinical experience governs its application. Tui na techniques are applied by various parts of the practitioner to the client and range from those that are light and soothing to those that are strong and invigorating. Refined over the centuries, tui na facilitates healing by regulating the circulation of Blood and Qi (vital energy), which controls body function and enhances resistance to disease. The term tui na (pronounced t-weigh na) combines the names of two of the hand techniques, tui meaning to push and na meaning to lift and squeeze, which are used to represent the system. Practitioners of tui na claim there are more than 365 hand techniques, although they can be generally placed in the category of pressing, rubbing, waving, shaking, percussion, or manipulating. The term tui na first appeared in the Ming Dynasty text Pediatric Tui Na Classic in 1601.

Myofascial Trigger Point Therapy

Based on the discoveries of Drs. Janet Travell and David Simons in which they found the causal relationship between chronic pain and its source, myofascial trigger point therapy is used to relieve muscular pain and dysfunction through applied pressure to trigger points of referred pain and through stretching exercises. These points are defined as localized areas in which the muscle and connective tissue are highly sensitive to pain when compressed. Pressure on these points can send referred pain to other specific parts of the body.

Neuromuscular therapy

Neuromuscular therapy (NMT) is a significant methodology for assessing, treating and preventing soft tissue injuries and chronic pain. NMT, a series of manual treatment protocols based on the practitioner’s skill, anatomy knowledge and precise palpatory application, has found its home, not only in the treatment rooms of massage therapy, but also in occupational and physical therapy, nursing, chiropractic, osteopathic and physical medicine clinics worldwide.

Both holistic and traditional medicine are infused in NMT. There are a great variety of styles and many developers of the NMT, yet their theoretical basis of all the modern protocols are similar since they are each rooted soundly in physiological principles.

Pregnancy Massage/Prenatal Massage

Performed by a trained specialist, many methods of massage and somatic therapies are both effective and safe prenatally, and during labor and postpartum periods of women’s pregnancies. Prenatally, specific techniques can reduce pregnancy discomforts and concerns and enhance the physiological and emotional well-being of both mother and fetus. Skilled, appropriate touch facilitates labor, shortening labor times and easing pain and anxiety. In the postpartum period, specialized techniques rebalance structure, physiology, and emotions of the new mother, and may help her to bond with and care for her infant. Specialized, advanced training in the anatomy, physiology, complications, precautions, and contraindications is highly recommended, and many practitioners request referrals from physicians prior to therapy.

PNF

PNF is an acronym for proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation. It is not really a type of stretching but is a technique of combining passive stretching (see section Passive Stretching) and isometric stretching (see section Isometric Stretching) in order to achieve maximum static flexibility. Actually, the term PNF stretching is itself a misnomer. PNF was initially developed as a method of rehabilitating stroke victims. PNF refers to any of several post-isometric relaxation stretching techniques in which a muscle group is passively stretched, then contracts isometrically against resistance while in the stretched position, and then is passively stretched again through the resulting increased range of motion. PNF stretching usually employs the use of a partner to provide resistance against the isometric contraction and then later to passively take the joint through its increased range of motion.

Sports massage

Sports massage consists of specific components designed to reduce injuries, alleviate inflammation, provide warm-up, etc. for amateur and professional athletes before, during, after, and within their training regimens.

Swedish Massage

One of the most commonly taught and well-known massage techniques, Swedish massage is a vigorous system of treatment designed to energize the body by stimulating circulation. Five basic strokes, all flowing toward the heart, are used to manipulate the soft tissues of the body. The client is disrobed to their comfort and covered by a sheet, with only the area being worked on exposed. Therapists use a combination of kneading, rolling, vibrational, percussive, and tapping movements, with the application of oil, to reduce friction on the skin. The many benefits of Swedish massage may include generalized relaxation, dissolution of scar tissue adhesion s, and improved circulation, which may speed healing and reduce swelling from injury.

Yvette Balderas –