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Muscle-Specific Deep Tissue Techniques

with Brian Utting

As part of our commitment to continuing education New Zealand College of Massage is proud to bring you Brian Utting's Muscle-Specific Deep Tissue Work.

Brian founded the Brian Utting School of Massage (BUSM) in Seattle, WA in 1982 and was BUSM's Director, Director of Education, and a lead instructor there for 26 years. Brian developed and refined the curriculum at BUSM and taught many subjects, including anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, pathology, contraindications, business skills, communication skills, hydrotherapy, and a variety of massage techniques. His 1000-hour COMTA-accredited school was considered one of the best massage schools in the country.

Brian has been teaching massage CE nationally and internationally since 1990. He designs his CE classes and programs so that the students really get the material and can take it home and apply it in their practice, rather than just being exposed to it. He teaches with a rare blend of knowledge, passion, precision, humor, common sense, and depth. In 2009 Brian was awarded the AMTA's Robert N. Calvert Award for Lifetime Achievement. In 2014, he was inducted into the Massage Therapy Hall of Fame.

Brian will be travelling to our Auckland and Christchurch campuses in January 2019, teaching on the following: 

Muscle-Specific Deep Tissue Techniques for the: 

  • Torso (Auckland) 
  • Posterior, Lateral and Anterior Neck (Auckland & Christchurch) 
  • Chest, Diaphragm and Shoulder Girdle (Christchurch)
To register to one of these courses or a bundle package, contact your nearest New Zealand College of Massage or email us, .

Early-bird discounts are offered if deposits are made before 31 December 2018. 

Either select one course to engage in, or select a Bundle package: 
  • Torso / Neck (Auckland)
  • Neck / Shoulder Girdle (Christchurch)

Muscle-Specific Deep Tissue Techniques for the Torso (Iliopsoas, Diaphragm, QL and Paraspinals)

Date: January 19th 
Schedule: Saturday, 9am - 6pm
Location: Building C, 382-384 Manukau Road, Greenlane, Auckland
Cost: $225 NZD per day or;
A bundle package of $400 is available with the Posterior/Anterior Neck course

These muscular structures support the core--they are integral to maintaining balance, structural alignment, ease of breathing, mobility, and the ability to function without lower back pain. In the morning, you will learn specific, potent, and effective Deep Tissue techniques to release the iliopsoas, diaphragm, QL, lower multifidus, and the lumbodorsal fascia. These are straightforward, muscle-specific techniques that can be immediately applied in practice, often with profound results. There will be a concise and insightful anatomy review of these structures with an eye toward fascial continuities and the functional relationships between them. We will also focus on correct placement and proper use of fingers, knuckles, and elbows for optimal results.

In the afternoon we will focus on some muscle-specific Deep Tissue techniques for the Paraspinals (erector spinae and transversospinalis) that are different from but complementary to what you learned in massage school or elsewhere. The emphasis will be on releasing and unbinding the erector spinae group, the transversospinalis group, the lumbodorsal fascia, and the quadratus lumborum. These muscle-specific techniques will improve the precision and effectiveness of your back massage, and can be easily integrated into your style of bodywork. Body mechanics will continue to be a focus of the class, as well as proper use of elbows, fingers and knuckles to save wear and tear on joints. Students who have taken this class have reported that they were able to apply the techniques in their practices right away and that their clients loved the results, feeling a newfound sense of freedom and ease in their backs.

Muscle-Specific Deep Tissue Techniques for the Posterior, Lateral and Anterior Neck

Auckland session 
Date:
 January 20th 
Schedule: Sunday, 9am - 6pm
Location: Building C, 382-384 Manukau Road, Greenlane, Auckland
Cost: $225 NZD per day or;
A bundle package of $400 is available with the Torso Iliopsoas, Diaphragm, QL & Paraspinals.

Christchurch session 
Date:
 January 26th 
Schedule: Saturday, 9am - 6pm
Location: 66b Wharenui Road, Riccarton, Christchurch 8041
Cost: $225 NZD per day or;
A bundle package of $400 is available with the Chest, Diaphragm and Shoulder Girdle.

The neck is a strong, vulnerable and complex structure. It is the most movable part of the spine, and yet is strong enough to balance and support the head (10-11 pounds), even with chronically poor posture. Skillful deep tissue work in this area is not about brute force; it's about precision and strategy, informed by knowledge of the anatomical structures. It's rare to find massage therapists who really know how to massage the neck in a precise, specific way--especially around the small muscular attachments to the transverse processes--even though this is often where the muscles are most frayed and/or inflamed.

In the morning you will learn specific techniques for releasing the cervical posterior paraspinal muscles (longissimus, semispinalis capitis, multifidus), suboccipital triangle, levator scapula (especially the cervical attachments), facet joints, splenius capitus and cervicis, posterior, middle, and anterior scalenes, sternocleidomastoid, and masseter.

In the afternoon we will focus on deep muscle-specific techniques for the anterior neck. Many people learned in massage school to avoid this area, but it responds safely and well to skilled and precise touch. We will focus on the scalene, suprahyoid, infrahyoid, and longus capitus and colli groups. This is really helpful work for clients who have been in car accidents, have emotional issues with their necks or throats, or use their voices professionally (eg, singers).

These are straightforward, muscle-specific techniques that can be immediately applied in practice. The work is well-suited to either treating cervical injuries or improving your spa massage, and will increase your precision, palpatory sensitivity, and effectiveness. Body mechanics will also be a focus of the class as well as proper use of fingers to save wear and tear on joints.

Muscle-Specific Deep Tissue Techniques for the Chest, Diaphragm and Shoulder Girdle

Christchurch session:
Date: January 27th
Schedule: Sunday, 9am - 6pm
Location: 66b Wharenui Road, Riccarton, Christchurch 8041
Cost:  $225 NZD per day or;
A bundle package of $400 is available with the Posterior/Anterior Neck course

The chest is often overlooked as a primary contributor to back and shoulder issues. It is the source of our breath and our taking in of life. These core muscles are often tight, constricting breathing, energy flow, and movement. You will learn simple but powerful methods to release the sternum, and ribcage. These techniques are liberating and create a noticeable opening right away, helping your clients to breathe more deeply with less effort. They also create a foundation for a more balanced shoulder girdle. The shoulders, in turn, are meant to float freely on the ribcage, but they are often restricted, stuck down, and in pain. You will learn to effectively liberate anterior scapular muscles such as the pectoralis minor and the subscapularis, and help to give your clients a feeling of ease and freedom in their shoulders that reaches all the way around to their back.

In the afternoon, we will work with the shoulder girdle from the side-lying position. Besides being deeply comforting and relaxing, skilled side-lying work gives you excellent access to the structures of the shoulder. You will learn specific, effective, and potent techniques for releasing the muscles of the shoulder girdle, including the trapezius, rhomboids, latissimus dorsi, serratus anterior, levator scapula, subscapularis, infraspinatus, supraspinatus, pectoralis minor, and the surrounding fascia.

The side-lying position also gives you excellent access to some of the smaller muscles of the back, such as the transversospinalis--muscles that are fundamentally important to our posture, movement, and well-being, but that are often completely missed in a standard massage.

We sometimes think of side-lying work as primarily for pregnant women, but almost all of your clients can benefit from skilled side-lying work in this area, and it feels wonderful. The class will focus on straightforward, muscle-specific techniques that can be immediately applied in practice. Body mechanics will also be a focus of this class, as well as proper use of fingers and elbows to save wear and tear on joints.