The American Institute of Alternative Medicine - COURSE DESCRIPTIONS


Anatomy & Physiology - 100 Hours

A thorough study of the organizational levels of the human body with extensive emphasis placed on the muscular, skeletal and nervous systems. Skeletal muscles are examined thoroughly by studying the region, attachment site, and actions. The students participate in this procedure by utilizing hands on palpation accompanied by cadaver videos and muscle models of every part of the body. Students also utilize grease pencils to isolate specific muscles. Muscle tissue is discussed in regards to function in health with relation to massage therapy.

The skeletal system is discussed in great detail throughout the course with relation to the muscular and nervous systems. The nervous system is examined completely with emphasis placed on the central nervous system, peripheral nerves, reflexes, dermatomes and possible pathology entrapment sites. The functions and pathology of the circulatory, respiratory, endocrine, and lymphatic systems are discussed with connection to their contribution to homeostasis.

Muscle testing and pathologies are discussed to determine their role so the massage therapist may advise their client of possible contraindications. It is important to determine the best course of action to be taken.

Active Isolated Stretching - 40 Hours

Aaron Mattes RKT, LMT Developed the Active Isolated Stretching (AIS) method. This method of fascial release provides effective dynamic facilitated stretching of major muscle groups, but more importantly functional and physiological restoration of superficial and deep fascial planes. Performing AIS for no longer than 2.0 seconds, allows the targeted muscle to be optimally lengthened, without triggering the protective stretch reflex. AIS removes toxins from the bodies cells and allows for substantial improvements in the muscle elasticity, range of motion and eliminates postural distortions. Stretching is also incorporated into our Sports Massage program.

Business and Ethics - 10 Hours

Students will be provided information regarding how to set up a successful massage therapy practice. Business management skills and marketing tools are taught so the student may utilize these concepts in their practice. Professional goal settings are discussed to round out the business aspects of our program.

Chair Massage - 16 Hours

Chair massage is a very valuable marketing tool for every therapist and is utilized in many aspects of the clinical experience at AIAM.

Students will be instructed on how to perform a thorough chair massage and all the needed preparations to bring chair massage to the public.

Fundamentals of Swedish Massage - 72 Hours

(This course is a prerequisite for Myofascial Release and Neuromuscular Therapy)

Students are instructed on the five strokes of contemporary Western massage and to systematically perform a completely relaxing full body massage. Techniques such as range of motion and light stretching are taught to further relax the client. Specific emphasis is placed on timing and draping as well as maintaining proper body mechanics while performing the Swedish massage.

Hot Stone Massage - 16 Hours

Hot Stone massage is an effective technique that adds the sensation of warmth to the benefits of a massage session. Soothing Basalt stones incorporate radiant warmth which provides deep relaxation, while softening fascia, relaxing muscles, tendons and increases circulation.

Students will be instructed on the application of a full body stone massage as well as the appropriate use of materials, set up, time frame and contraindications.

NJ and FL LAW and HIV/AIDS - 10 Hours

Discussions regarding massage therapy laws in NJ provide valuable information for the legality of massage in New Jersey and Florida.

Myofascial Release - 24 Hours

(Prerequisite: Fundamentals of Swedish massage)

Myofascial release is a style of deep tissue massage. Fascia is a continuous three dimensional connective tissue that binds, supports, protects the organs and is found throughout the body. Fascia allows for the flow of nutrients into the bodies cells and to support the organs. Fascia has the ability to conform to postural and muscular stresses which inhibit free range of motion and blocks blood flow. When releasing these connective tissues through Myofascial release the students will facilitate the client’s homeostasis. Students are instructed on the use of elbows, fists and hands to be incorporated in the Myofascial release massage.

Neuromuscular Therapy - 42 Hours

(Prerequisite: Fundamentals of Swedish massage)

NMT is an advanced scientific technique that directly involves the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. The goal of NMT is to isolate and identify soft tissue irregularities in myofascial pain patterns and to increase circulation and to normalize the reflex arc. Students will be instructed on how to identify and alleviate trigger points that may develop in soft tissue.

Students will learn how to formulate an effective treatment plan and perform a thorough postural analysis.

NMT Applied Anatomy Pathology - 50 Hours

There are many pathologies that need to be discussed in regards to assessing and effective treating a client. For example, we discuss carpal tunnel syndrome, Thoracic outlet syndrome, fibromyalgia, bakers cysts and Piriformis syndrome to name a few. It is our goal to prepare our graduates with the ability to recognize any pathology necessary to perform their job efficiently.

Orthopedic Assessment - 40 Hours

Students are instructed how to utilize assessment techniques which will allow for the therapist to make an accurate assessment of a client’s condition. Assessments such as muscle testing provide valuable knowledge for when and how to apply specific treatments and if a client needs to be referred to another health care professional.

The advanced technique training is designed to evaluate and recognize acute and/ or chronic pain syndromes. In addition, students learn to implement an effective treatment plan for most conditions. EXAMPLES ARE: carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ), fibromyalgia, sciatica, frozen shoulder, fallen arches and many others.

Orthopedics and advanced techniques will provide the students with command and confidence in which treatments should be performed.

Pregnancy Techniques - 10 Hours

This program explains the physiological changes that occur during pregnancy. Techniques are taught to alleviate the discomfort women may be experiencing during this time. Students are instructed on specific body positioning for the expectant mother.

Post Natal techniques are taught to bring the mother’s body into homeostasis with emphasis placed on the pelvic region and the core muscles.

Reflexology - 32 Hours

Reflexology is an ancient and respected Eastern philosophy based technique that stimulates points found on the foot that correspond too many areas of the human body. Applying reflexology will rejuvenate the client’s entire body as well as increase homeostasis.

Student Clinic - 200 Hours

This section of our program is continuous throughout the entire year and is an immeasurable tool for the student’s growth and development. The student clinic is where our students perfect their skill by participating in all aspects of the clinic. Interaction duties such as arranging appointments, evaluating client history forms and SOAP note taking are necessary skills needed in the professional massage therapy market. The students also perform massage therapy on a wide range of clients in a supervised setting.

Sports Massage - 10 Hours

Specific PRE event sports massage techniques are taught to prepare an athlete for their event. Specific POST massage techniques are taught to return the athletes body to homeostasis. AIAM arranges for off campus sports massage to be performed by our students at local events to perfect their skill and confidence. Examples are: swimming meets, golf outings, volleyball tournaments, 5k runs, local charities and others. WE have an affiliation with the New York Jets to perform sports massage on a weekly basis.

Functional Integrated Therapy - Available in Continuing Education

FIT is a one of a kind multidisciplinary approach developed by Mark Carangelo. FIT integrates functional movement screenings, Motor control testing, osteo- pathic alignments, orthopedic assessments, (passive, active, resistive and spe- cial tests) along with myofascial release, trigger point therapy, stretching, cor- rective exercise (client home care) and joint mobilizations to facilitate an overall balance of the body resulting in structural integration, pain free movement and enhanced overall performance. As therapists we need to assess movement patterns and make corrective methods for the client’s long term health. People compensate for faulty movement patterns and the proper assessment is key to correction of these compensation patterns. Reprogramming the CNS will allow for the patients to regain the proper motor control sequencing.

It is paramount to make an accurate assessment of the condition in which your client presents. If the therapist assesses the patient has a stability issue over a mobility issue the correction can be quite different. Stability calls for develop- mental sequencing via rolling. These specific evaluations need to be correctly assessed to assure the proper treatment is conducted. Understanding how we function as humans is a major part of FIT