The Deepfeet Bar Therapy® group is excited to welcome one of our newest Ashiatsu Instructors:
Charlene Gaffney of Memphis, Tennessee
Go Team Ashi!
- Where are you from originally? I grew up on the Mississippi Gulf Coast in Biloxi. I moved to Memphis after massage school in 2001 and have lived here ever since.
- How long have you been a massage therapist?(Or what year?) Since 2001
- What made you want to get into massage? After high school I spent one semester at community college and was SOOOO bored. Sitting behind a desk all day for another 4-6 years was not an idea I wanted to entertain. So one day I was giving a shoulder massage to a friend that was going to massage school. She started telling me all about it and that my massage felt as good as any other she had received in school so far. The most appealing thing to me was that I could be done with school within a year and begin making money and helping the stressed out world relax! So I took a tour of the school, got a job at Sally’s Beauty Supply down the street from my mom’s house where I was living at the time, and signed myself up! I had no idea at the age of 19 that this would end up being the career that has supported me my entire life! I have since put myself through 6 years of college in Memphis and have a Masters degree!
- What did you do before massage school? One semester of community college and some hard life lessons on life without a good education.
- How long have you been doing ashiatsu, and where did you originally learn? I found Ashiatsu in 2011 and hosted Mary-Claire Fredette at the local massage school where I was teaching.
- What drew you to the modality originally? I am a Thai Yoga Massage practitioner since 2008, so I LOVE working with my feet and body. I was teaching an intro to thai massage class in Memphis and an Ashiatsu practitioner attended it. We got to talking, ended up trading sessions, and, needless to say after that I was HOOKED!
- What percentage of your clients do you do barefoot massage on? Most of my clients alternate between Thai Yoga Massage and Ashiatsu. So I would say at least 50%. When I perform table massage it is Ashiatsu only. No hands on the table! These two modalities have afforded me a FULL private practice where I treat athletes and active people.
- What other modalities do you do in your massage practice? My earliest Reiki attunements always inform my practice, though I don’t offer Reiki sessions specifically on my menu. Thai Yoga Massage and Ashiatsu are effective enough. Sometimes I use hot stones and thai herbal compresses.
- How do they complement each other? Ashiatsu is the perfect way to release restricting soft tissue. It unwinds muscle and fascia from head to toe. Makes the Thai Yoga Massage much easier when my clients make it to the mat. Thai opens the joints and energy lines. Ashiatsu takes care of everything else!
- How long have you been teaching barefoot massage? I’ve been teaching Ashiatsu in Memphis since 2014
- What made you want to teach? First and foremost, I am a teacher. I taught entry level massage students for 9 years here in Memphis. I feel it is a service to my profession to share ways to save your body and give a more effective session.
- What makes teaching DeepFeet Ashiatsu rewarding? I get to meet and work with so many amazing professionals that are already out there doing their thing in our field. Their enthusiasm keeps me inspired and on my toes.
- How do you feel like you can transform other massage therapists’ careers? Thinking outside the box to treat recurring client issues is key for preventing burnout. Mixing things up, doing something different, and working with a company like Deep Feet that is respected and known across the nation gives practitioners l leverage in their practice. This modality keeps clients coming back!
- Do you have a favorite moment or testimonial that you’d like to share? I was working on a client’s neck one day. She was oooooo-ing and aaaaahhhh-ing and said “Wow, I feel more oxygen going to my brain. I think Ashiatsu massage is going to make me smarter!”
- Any crazy or funny class moments you’d like to share? My favorite moments in class are when students are able to laugh at themselves and not take themselves so seriously while they are learning. It’s always fun to see the lightbulb go off and a student’s skills skyrocket to the next level! That process is usually accompanied by big smiles and sighs of relief!
- Where can you find Charlene online? www.tnmassage.com www.ashiatsumemphis.com www.memphismassageprofessionals.com
- Married? Family? Pets? Single. One cat. All of my family is in Biloxi, MS and I visit them often.
- Can you drive a stick shift or farm equipment or ride a motorcycle? Four wheeler and a scooter.
- What do you do for fun? I am super active. Yoga, swimming, biking, running, kickboxing, hiking, camping, travelling, DANCING! I love Latin Dance, I started learning about 8 months ago.
- Any other interesting tidbits? I love what I do. I will do it forever if my body allows. I have a double major bachelors degree in psychology and Spanish and a Masters in English with a focus in ESL. Maybe I will use them when I’m 55 and retire from massage!
Ashiatsu Deepfeet Bar Therapy® is the leader in Continuing Education for Massage Therapists nationwide. Our method of deep tissue barefoot Swedish massage using an over head support system has improved the quality of life for many massage therapists around the world. Learn more at www.deepfeet.com.