|I have been fascinated with anatomy since early elementary school. In third grade, I remember anxiously awaiting the ability to dissect a pig heart with my aunt, a nurse. In sixth grade I received a Grey's anatomy text for my birthday. One day I knew that somehow I would work in the fascinating world of anatomy and healthcare. I had no idea about the unusual and amazing adventure that was in store for me.
I was particularly interested in the world of the musckoskeletal. In 1995 I graduated from the Ann Arbor School of Massage and Bodywork and my career led me to a pamphlet about this Technique called Active Release Techniques. It was fascinating to me how much this technique made logical sense. I’ve always thought that tissue movement was an important component and was eager to learn more. In 2007 I purchased my airline ticket to San Francisco paid tuition for my first class and the adventure began.
By 2010 I was full body certified in Active Release Techniques and was beginning my career where I am still practicing at Koob Chiropractic. My job was becoming more and more exciting everyday as I slowly learned the intricacies of this amazing world. I understood that with this Swiss army knife of a technique I had a view that was different from conventional physical medicine. I had a map. This was a map that wasn’t being used by anyone else.
The map of over 500 protocols allowed me to see things that was missed in conventional physical medicine. I never imagined that I would be in a position to help people where nobody else was able. Patients had cancelled carpal tunnel surgeries, ulnar transposition surgeries and shoulder impingement surgeries. Patients ended their need for pain medications, orthotics for foot problems and mouthguards for TMJ problems. I could producing incredible results with the map I had learned to use. This continued to be fun and rewarding work. I knew something was missing.
I began to understand that movement was a critical missing component in the big picture. It became apparent to me that tissue work was only part of the picture. After becoming a Personal Trainer I dove into a whole new world. I studied the movement specialist of our time. I studied Janda, Gray Cook, Stewart Mcgill Craig Liebenson, Charlie Weingroff, Mike Boyle and more. After becoming certified in the Functional Movement Screen I learned that the question that needs to be asked is what movement is necessary to restore normal function. This study led to the development of my movement practice and movement clinic.
Much of my practice has been in the clinic and many amazing opportunities have been presented to me in this adventure. Here’s a few fun highlights:
- Traveled overseas to Russia and Abkhazia in 2015 to work with disabled children.
- Treated and worked with Athletes for four years at the Fitness Place gym in Soldotna
- Invited to travel with an Alaskan volleyball team to the U.S. Volleyball Open in 2014.
- Provided ART at the North Slope at the Endicott and Liberty camps
- Presenter at Health and Safety Conferences
- Provided ART for the Kenai River Marathon for over 4 years
- I am now honored with a seat appointment on the Alaska Board of Massage Therapists as Chair
Your goals may be to solve pain, squat efficiently, PR in a deadlift, PR in a 5K or maybe complete your first triathlon. Your goals may be to relieve pain and solve long term issues that have stumped health care providers. I have training that provides a map that may help get you there. If I can't get you there I am dedicated to finding the right team who can.
Dave Edwards-Smith ART, NSCA-CPT, CMT
Active Release Technique Provider