Therapist aims to correct office related work ailments

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Tracie Renee is her own best advertisement. She is high energy and brimming with enthusiasm describing her work. And she’d like everyone she counsels to feel as good as she does at work. She is a holistic health practitioner and certified massage therapist.

Tracie Renee is her own best advertisement. She is high energy and brimming with enthusiasm describing her work. And she’d like everyone she counsels to feel as good as she does at work. She is a holistic health practitioner and certified massage therapist.

Renee started working as a massage therapist in 1999, treating clients with chronic conditions. She began recognizing a skyrocketing problem for those contacting her seeking massage therapy treatments. Desk-bound professionals were suffering stress in conjunction with neck, shoulder and back pain. So, about five years ago, Renee adopted a workplace focus for her business.

“Stress is not a weakness, just a signal,” Renee stated. She cited individual differences in stress tolerance as well. 

Renee traces a significant contributor to office work stress as slouching posture while seated daylong at a desk, and especially while staring at desk-mounted screens. During extended episodes of working seated in an office chair, an employee has “zero movement” in the shoulders and neck, with a scrunched diaphragm causing to shallow breathing.

“I want to support people stuck in offices all day,” Renee continued. “That’s where my heart is now.” Her current massage therapy enterprise is called Pro Seated Massage. Its appended self-description is “A Progressive Stress Management Company.”Renee operates from an El Cajon office but travels throughout San Diego County to deliver massages and advice to desk-bound workers.

Breathing exercises can provide “an instant recharge,” Renee said. She wants to reach companies and people. “The question isn’t if you are managing all right while seated too much at work. It’s ‘Could you be better?’ ”

Renee mentioned as a benefit to companies that she can screen employees regularly to avert workers’ compensation disabilities. And workers treated with a 15-minute neck and shoulder massage do tend to appreciate their employer’s concern for their well-being. “This is a huge benefit to employees,” Renee said.

Among Renee’s clients are Morgan Stanley employees and members of the San Diego City College Dispatch Center. Interestingly enough, as Renee recounts her early visits there, the dispatchers had been given new, expensive work chairs — but that those had made no difference for the dispatchers. “They were so stressed at work,” Renee said. “In standard office roller chairs, people are just dying.” Besides regular seated massages, Renee offered the dispatchers one ergonomic tool that she recommends, wobble disks. After trying them out, the center ordered four.

The wobble disk is an air-filled seat cushion sometimes used as gym equipment. Used atop a stable chair seat, the wobble disk encourages good seated posture and movement of the back, neck and shoulders.

Renee also favors high-density foam rollers to alleviate lower back stress and pain. A baseball stuffed in a tube sock and positioned at the chair back can help some other office workers. “These are really valuable tools,” she said. A “Half-Whisk” can reverse scalp tension for workers feeling like “they want to pull their hair out.”

Renee teaches breathing exercises and self-massage techniques during her in-office sessions helping desk-bound workers. She advises about appropriate individualized seat height. She brings her own massage chair to the company, gauging that the chair massages help employees more, and are appreciated more, than coffee breaks.

Other problem activities common for people these days include long-distance drives in stressful traffic conditions. Children with overloaded or imbalanced backpacks for school can have early-onset back issues. “With children, I have seen results so many times,” Renee said of her interventions. When in her own office, Renee offers 30 minute sessions that “can fix a back in a half hour.” A 50-minute full body massage option is available too, as is deep tissue massage.

“We should all be feeling really good,” Renee concluded. “And my results are guaranteed.”

More information about Tracie Renee and interventions from Pro Seated Massage call (619) 905-9251 or researching online at www.proseatedmassage.com.

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