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Clinical Assessment for Massage Therapy: A practical guide brings together a range of examination and assessment techniques which are otherwise only found in a variety of different places. The author presents them in a way which is specifically relevant to massage therapists. The ability to assess a client’s condition accurately is crucial if massage therapy is to be given safely, appropriately and effectively.

The book is presented in two main parts:

  • Part I: Essentials of Assessment addresses various background topics which need to be understood when preparing for assessment. These include a chapter on the assessment of gait and posture and another on pain.
  • Part II: Regional Assessment describes in detail the individual assessment techniques for each part of the body and gives guidance on how and when to use them.

You can see how well this information is presented and explained for massage therapists by downloading a PDF of Chapter 10 Comprehensive examination of spine (see link beneath book cover image), or click here to flip through.

Additional appendices include a muscle chart; information and guidance on measuring the range of motion of joints; and neurological testing.

Students of massage therapy will find the book an invaluable source of essential material to support their learning and understanding of their new profession.  More experienced therapists will use it to enhance, update and extend their skills in this key area of practice.


Part I: Essentials of Assessment

Chapter One: Assessment Matters

Chapter Two: Impairment Model

Chapter Three: Assessment Protocol

Chapter Four: Understanding Pain

Chapter Five: Postural Assessment & Gait

Chapter Six: Spinal Motions: Structure & Function

Part II: Regional Assessment

Chapter Seven: Ankle & Foot

Chapter Eight: Knee

Chapter Nine: Hip & Innominate

Chapter Ten: Comprehensive Examination of Spine

Chapter Eleven: Sacroiliac Joint & Pelvis

Chapter Twelve: Lumbar Spine

Chapter Thirteen: Thoracic Spine and Ribs

Chapter Fourteen: Cervical Spine

Chapter Fifteen: Thoracic Outlet

Chapter Sixteen: Shoulder

Chapter Seventeen: Elbow

Chapter Eighteen: Wrist and Hand



Further Reading

Additional information

Format Paperback, eBook
ISBN 978-1-909141-37-7
Edition No 1
Pages 584
Illustrations 1132 photographs
Dimensions 276 X 220 mm
Status Published
Publication Date 17 April 2018

Author biography

David Zulak MA, RMT has been a massage therapist since 1994, and an instructor since 1996. He has worked as an instructor, program director and curriculum writer for several massage therapy schools in Ontario, Canada. In the course of his teaching career, he has taught almost every course given at massage therapy schools however his focus and interest has always remained anatomy, treatments, techniques and orthopaedic assessment skills. A specific passion of his has been emphasizing and promoting the need for all massage therapists to have a good solid understanding of and facility with the skills involved in clinical assessment. David is the author of a number of articles published in the column Essentials of Assessment in Massage Therapy Canada. He also writes an occasional column for the same journal, called The Learning Curve, in which he discusses issues and trends in massage therapy education. David teaches seminars for practising massage therapists across Canada, as well as sustaining a busy clinical practice.

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