The legalities of hands-on therapies

It is always wise to inform your client of where, how and when you will touch them so that they will not be surprised and so that it will not interfere with the therapeutic process.

by Dr. Andy Yates — 

Local laws can sometimes seem daunting when a therapist wishes to use some form of body therapy in conjunction with other mind or energy modalities. But there is hope.

First, find out about the local laws on the subject. There are requirements about the environment, the therapy and the contact, and they sometimes can go as far as to specify what wattage of light bulb should be used. But usually there will be a definition of what is allowable in various stated modalities and what requirements are necessary in terms of licenses, permits, etc.

In the state of Arizona, Reiki is recognized as a permitted practice. So this means that hands-on work can be carried out as long as the client is clothed and the environment is compliant.

Other forms of therapy, such as hypnosis and NLP, are supported — as long as the client is clothed and the client’s permission is given. So include the permission on the induction form if you regularly use appropriate body contact to support your process.

It is always wise to inform your client of where, how and when you will touch them so that they will not be surprised and so that it will not interfere with the therapeutic process.

In many modalities, touching is an essential and powerful part of the process, which may provide anchoring, reframing, rapid hypnosis, etc. The therapist can intuitively switch through mind or body (and spirit/energy) modalities as indicated by the client.

Without a license to touch, there are other options that are available to the therapist, especially if he does not feel it appropriate to physically touch the client. He can use what I refer to as the “virtual touch” or the intention of a touch without physical contact.

Consider that the client indicates an area on his body that does not feel right when carrying out a body-scanning process. The therapist can reach out with one hand towards that area using an open palm or with directed fingers, while maintaining an acceptable distance. It is a touch without a touch that provides connection, concentration and focus on the targeted area. In addition, do not forget that clients can touch themselves, and may feel more comfortable with that method.

In the above example, the therapist simply tells the client to place his hands on the body area and concentrate on the feeling. The client can be questioned about his reaction to the touch and also what he feels through his hands. This may provide further insight into the issue.

In summary, I often meet mind science therapists who are more than reluctant to even consider the use of touch. Yet, after some research and consideration, they can add a dimension and completeness to their practices that truly makes them holistically efficacious.

 

Andy Yates has a Ph.D. in clinical hypnotherapy, is a Neurolinguistic Programming Master practitioner and trainer, licensed massage therapist, and Reiki master and coach. 480-310-7493, trefoiltherapies@live.com or www.trefoiltherapies.com.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 30, Number 6, December 2011/January 2012.


, ,
Web Analytics