Renata Maniaci, a Fulbright scholar, had her dream job. While she was at Columbia University completing her masters in public health, she was working at the Guttmacher Institute which advances sexual and reproductive health through policy, education and research. “I thought that was where I would be headed after grad school. I was interested in analyzing qualitative data and enjoyed the work.”
Sometimes life takes a turn we aren’t expecting. “I felt an inexplicable pull to find out more about energy work,” she told me. Renata was no stranger to alternative therapies. Her mother, a nurse and social worker, changed careers to become an acupuncturist. Renata had experienced Reiki, acupuncture and healing touch treatments. “I started with Reiki which piqued my interest. As a researcher with a strong academic background, I was looking for something that could answer my questions about how energy works more thoroughly. I found the Healing Touch program.”
What is Healing Touch
Healing Touch is an energy-based therapy that was developed by Janet Mentgen, a practicing nurse for 43 years, who saw the positive effects of touch while using various energy techniques and modalities. She formally created the Healing Touch program in 1989, which was certified by the American Holistic Nurses Association in 1993. Healing Touch is also accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies. Currently Healing Touch is the only nationally certified energy program.
Energy therapies focus on removing energy congestion that form in our energy fields (aura) and energy centers (chakras). Once these imbalances and disturbances are cleared, the energy channels resume their task of integrating the body, mind and soul to restore health and promote healing. They may also help to prevent future issues by restoring balance to energy field disturbances, which could later result in illness if left unbalanced.
Healing Touch is an energy modality that has been documented through research studies (www.healingtouchresearch.com). For example, a study by St. Joseph’s Hospital in St. Paul MN found Healing Touch helped to decrease anxiety and shorten the length of hospital stays for heart bypass patients. The Healing Touch program itself has a research division, of which Renata is a member, which has affiliations with different institutions for its studies such as Watson Cady Science Institute and the International Society of Subtle Energy and Energy Medicine.
A Personal Experience
Perhaps the best way to understand Healing Touch is to experience energy work first-hand. A simple exercise is to rub your palms together rapidly, then hold them close together. If you move them you can feel the heat, the vibration – the energy – moving between your hands. If you practice yoga you may be able to feel the lines of energy through alignment in the poses. Some energy therapies I’ve experienced are Reiki, acupuncture, cranial-sacral massage and reflexology. Some massage therapists can feel the energy moving through your body as they work.
I asked Renata to help me with two areas –physical issues: my tightness in my left leg and sinus congestion; and an emotional issue: clarity of thought. After a thorough intake, I laid on a table fully clothed, closed my eyes and relaxed. During the session I physically felt Renata occasionally laying her hands on my feet and my head. I also felt a release or an emptying in my leg. I felt very calm and relaxed. When the session was completed Renata and I talked about what she found – congestion in the left knee. She said, “Your leg felt like it wanted to be connected to your heart.” She also cleared my sinuses on the left side. She also did clearing in my third chakra which represents personal power, thoughts, will, how you are and want to be.
Immediately walking after my treatment I felt lighter. My leg was better but not perfect. By the next morning I had no tightness left. My leg was mobile and functioning one hundred percent. Ever since my session I have had more energy and focus.
Who Can Benefit from Healing Touch
Renata is the only Healing Touch practitioner in D.C. She practices at Freed Bodyworks at 1337 Pennsylvania Ave, SE. Many of her clients seek her out as a last resort. They’ve gone through a conventional medicine route and are still not well.” My clients have all different sorts of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual issues.” For example, a client wanted a broken ankle to heal quicker. Another had a back ache or headaches. A majority come for emotional/mental reasons including grief, a breakup or general stress and often it’s a mixture. One client came to her with a torn ACL. She saw him once a week, then every other week to build up the energy in his knee. “I love that each day is so different, and I love to facilitate self- healing.”
Renata says her goal is to put herself out of a job. “I think the majority of people can do what I do. I help people with my own hands, then I teach them to use their own hands.” She believes that modern medicine has restricted itself to a very narrow view of healing. “Our bodies seem so solid, but are really made of energy waves or vibrations, so using an energetic method for healing, especially person to person, is quite logical.” She would like to see Healing Touch as part of a holistic treatment for healing that includes conventional medicine and other modalities.
To learn more about Renata and Healing Touch go to: www.freedbodyworks.com.
Pattie Cinelli is a personal trainer, writer and group exercise instructor who practices a holistic approach to getting and staying well, feeling good and being fit. If you want to learn more about this approach, contact Pattie at: firstname.lastname@example.org. See more at Capital Community News.
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