Welcome to Hands For Heroes™

Hands for Heroes™ is a nationwide organization of caring health care professionals who have donated their time and skills to provide therapeutic bodywork for our Nations Veterans.

 

When you partner with Hands for Heroes™ to provide bodywork therapy and related modalities, you are giving one of the most useful services that can be received by our returning veterans.  As health care providers you are already aware of the profound effect bodywork has in alleviating pain, reducing stress and balancing lives.  For every veteran to whom you provide service, this will in turn affect the lives of their family, friends and associates indeed affecting countless others.

Just consider that thousands of veterans return to their homes both here and from overseas service each year.  To serve our country the Veterans may have given up what most of us take for granted.  Just being on their homeland and among family and friends is often just the tip of the iceberg. 

Your commitment for bodywork services can begin at any level, even one bodywork session.  As our work expands to every community across the U.S., we have gone a long way to heal our nation’s protectors.

To support you, Hands for Heroes™ will provide you with marketing materials to notify the public of your commitment to the military Veterans who have served us.

When you partner with Hands for Heroes™, we will immediately forward you a Hands for Heroes Partner™ wall certificate, a Hands for Heroes Gift Certificate Template, a press release and our logo which can be used in your publications and advertising.  At your request, we will also provide your business listing on our National Registry where Veterans can locate you in your area.

Just fill out the brief Partner Information Form and state your level of commitment on the Hands for Heroes Goal Setting Page. Please remember to forward to us the number of Veterans for whom you provide sessions each month.  We will keep a count on our website of the total bodywork sessions given around the nation.

So join with Hands for Heroes in this most rewarding endeavor in healing our nation’s protectors, our service men and women.

 

MISSION:

The mission of Hands for Heroes™ is to make available to our returning Veterans Bodywork and health care services through numerous individuals and health care centers across the U.S.

 

GOAL: One Million Massages!

The Goal of Hands for Heroes™ is to enlist numerous partners in providing free Bodywork Therapy services to our Veterans. Our ultimate goal is to provide One million Bodywork And Health Care Sessions!

 

JOB OPPORTUNITIES:

One or Two Job Opportunities with Hands For Heroes. Helping Veteran providers and Veterans by keeping up with email requests and establishing Non Profit status for Hands For Heroes. Just a few hours per week for people with the right stuff!

Compensation: Satisfaction of helping our service men and women and our providers.

 

 

"There is no greater reward than to make a fundamental difference in someones life."
Sister Mary Rose McGeardy

 

 

PTSD: The Benefits of Massage by Helen Smithson A Hands For Heroes Provider

Massage Back From The Brink of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Massage has been shown to be massively beneficial to veterans and members of the armed forces who return to the United States with physical limitations. Massage can help to ease pain, prepare muscles for extra stress and pressure and reduce the effect of physical wounds. However massage can also help to heal the mental scars and burdens that many veterans return with. Nearly 30 per cent of returning veterans are reported to have some form of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and this can have a devastating effect on their lives. [1] Many people can suffer with undiagnosed PTSD for many years without realizing, and it is a condition that may affect many more veterans than the official statistics suggest. Signs and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder include suffering from bad dreams, having fearful thoughts and flashbacks, Returning soldiers with PTSD often struggle to maintain regular employment or to fit back into their previously happy family lives. [2] However massage can help to ease the emotional pain of PTSD and help its veteran suffers to reconnect with the world in a meaningful way.

How Massage Can Help

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, from a medical point of view, is effectively a chemical imbalance in the brain caused by severe trauma or stress. When you are witness to a terrifying or stressful event your fight or flight instinct kicks in and it can be difficult to switch off this heightened emotional reaction. In fact an inability to switch off and relax from a heightened sense of anxiety and tension is one of the main symptoms of PTSD. Massage can help to control this [3] on a simple and fundamental level because one of the main aims of massage is to relax tensed muscles. When the PTSD sufferers muscles are constantly tense and ‘ready for action’ this can cause them physical as well as emotional pain. However massage can help to ease this as well as to encourage the veteran to relax and take time out to focus on themselves: as well as encourage themselves to feel vulnerable in front of another person, no doubt for the first time in a long time.

The Benefits of Touch

It doesn’t actually matter what kind of massage is given to help in this particular treatment instance; no one technique has been proven to be more or less beneficial than another. [4] The key is to use whatever kind of massage you are familiar with or feel most comfortable with. No matter the technique the aim of this kind of massage therapy is to inadvertently trigger traumatic memory; although this may sound traumatic and unnecessary, this is actually a powerful tool for healing and growth. One must face the trauma that is preventing them from moving on, process is and deal with it before you can be free of your PTSD and continue with your life in any meaningful way. Massage helps to form attachment and touch has been proven in so many different studies to be healing and enriching.

Of course, massage alone cannot be a cure for post-traumatic stress disorder, nor are we suggesting that that is the case. However massage certainly can help to ease PTSD symptoms and can be massively beneficial along side other medical support and intervention to help veterans to overcome this condition and go on to live happy and fulfilling lives. Taking a holistic approach to the treatment of post traumatic stress disorder can significantly reduce the likelihood of the sufferer suffering from any long term negative effects due to their trauma [5] and soldiers that wish to return the army and rejoin their units are even more likely to be able to do so if they combine massage with the other more traditional treatments for their symptoms.

Additional Reading

[1] "National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: How Common is PTSD?", US Department of Veterans Affairs, http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/PTSD-overview/basics/how-common-is-ptsd.asp

[2] "Post traumatic stress disorder symptoms, causes and effects", Psych Guides, http://www.psychguides.com/guides/post-traumatic-stress-disorder-symptoms-causes-and-effects/

[3] "Massage for treatment of post traumatic stress disorder", Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, http://www.pacificcollege.edu/acupuncture-massage-news/articles/759-massage-for-treatment-of-post-traumatic-stress-disorder.html

[4] "Recovering body and soul from post traumatic stress disorder", The American Massage Therapy Association, https://www.amtamassage.org/articles/3/MTJ/detail/1817

[5] "Massage combats PTSD", Massage Today, http://www.massagetoday.com/mpacms/mt/article.php?id=14328