If you're like most Massage Therapists you see the results that your work has when treating clients with lower back pain (LBP).
Your clients often feel significant reduction in their pain, in both acute and chronic situations.
"Proving" that your work produces these results can be tricky if not frustrating, because the public and science based community wants to see studies backing up your claims.
Although no one study or even group of studies provides definitive proof, certainly not close to the validity that meta-analysis of peer reviewed studies offers, it's still important to seize the opportunity to cite supportive controlled studies when you come across them. This way, you can cite them to clients who may ask you, "Can you help reduce my chronic LBP?"
While every client's situation is unique and should be assessed on a case by case basis, you can often qualify your answer by telling them, "In many cases massage can help to reduce chronic lower back pain. One particular study I like proved that it can. Although results can never be guaranteed, and vary among clients, the best thing to do would be provide you with a few sessions and see if can help your situation."
Here's one straightforward study you can cite:
Results: By the end of the study, the massage therapy group, as compared to the relaxation group, reported experiencing less pain, depression, anxiety and improved sleep. They also showed improved trunk and pain flexion performance, and their serotonin and dopamine levels were higher.
Conclusions: Massage therapy is effective in reducing pain, stress hormones and symptoms associated with chronic low back pain.