Lindsy Heusinkveld, at left, recently added massage therapy services to Elder Chiropractic in Chatfield owned by Julie Elder.
Lindsy Heusinkveld, at left, recently added massage therapy services to Elder Chiropractic in Chatfield owned by Julie Elder.
Lindsy Heusinkveld is adding her massage therapy services to a long-standing business in Chatfield. Heusinkveld practices massage at Julie Elder's Elder Chiropractic, which is, incidentally, celebrating its 31st year of business in Chatfield.

"I think that the two really go together well. If your muscles are tight and you come to Julie to have your bones put back into place, tight muscles are going to pull your bones back out of place," said Heusinkveld.

She explained that she initially became interested in massage, because she really enjoys helping people and the fact that her hands can affect someone else in a positive way.

"I'm really interested in the human body itself, and I wanted to work in a field that works with the human body," she added. "Massage is so broad and I like it because it helps people."

Heusinkveld attended Northwest Health Sciences University in Bloomington, Minn., to receive her education in massage, then was asked to serve as a massage and physical therapist at the post-surgical ward at the hospital in Cresco, Iowa, where she gained experience helping patients recover. She was eventually referred to Elder who, as a chiropractor, needed her own muscles pampered.

"I worked in physical therapy for a year, so I'm probably more into the therapeutic aspect of massage than I am into the 'fluff and puff' kind of massage," Heusinkveld said. "I started doing relaxation, trigger-point and myofacial relaxation. I've taken a lot of continuing education. I really like neuromuscular therapy and while I'm not certified in pregnancy massage and baby massage, I've gotten more into it. I also took a class on how the cranial structure works."

While it took Heusinkveld a while to adjust to the idea, attending cadaver classes to learn about muscular and skeletal structures became interesting. It was a curious way to expand her knowledge, indeed, but also one that extended beyond the typical "textbook and homework" routine that might otherwise leave a student wondering exactly what the muscles they're adjusting look like and how they're affected by massage.

She said attending classes is one of her favorite things and she tries to go every year to learn more about massage through the cadaver class.

"I think it's one of the things that interests me the best, because it's something I can look at over and over again in a book, but if you can touch and see something, it makes more sense," Heusinkveld explained. "It's something I had to learn to appreciate."

Heusinkveld's out-of-joint, but still-cheerful clients, range from her own newborns to people 99 years old and up, and she feels that they all benefit from having their muscles manipulated.

"I always tell people that massage is very good at making us aware of our own bodies. We can run and run and never take the time to take care of our own bodies, but there are benefits of getting relaxation and stress relief," she concluded. "I like to help someone see results...I kind of feel like I've never worked a day in my life."