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J Bodyw Mov Ther. 2016 Jul;20(3):542-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jbmt.2015.12.003. Epub 2015 Dec 17.

A guiding framework to understand relationships within the profession of massage therapy.

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Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning, 205 Humber College Blvd, Toronto, ON M9W 5L7, Canada. Electronic address:


An element of professionalization is the development of a body of knowledge and the integration of that knowledge into practice, also known as evidence-informed practice (EIP). EIP was officially adopted in Ontario, Canada, by the massage therapy profession in 2002 when the professional competency document was updated to include competencies related to research literacy (College of Massage Therapists of Ontario, 2002). Despite efforts to increase EIP, there continues to be a research-practice gap in massage therapy. However, there also seems to be interest in finding ways to support the increase massage therapists' capacity to apply research. To support change, it is useful to describe the relationships in the profession that may have an effect on the use of evidence in practice and the development of a broader culture of inquiry. In order to better understand how these relationships may impact on EIP, an ecological model is proposed.


Culture of inquiry; Ecological model; Evidence-informed practice; Research mindedness

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