Medical Massage Therapists, Chuck LaFrano and Julie Ankrom
LaFrano Massage Dynamics offers an innovative bodywork philosophy, centered around medical massage therapy. We’ve developed specialized, medical massage techniques, as well as a broad holistic vision that, when combined, help those with injuries and illnesses to recover more quickly. We teach medical massage continuing education courses throughout the country. Chuck has a private practice in Naperville, IL, Julie in Breckenridge, Colorado, and surrounding areas.
Together, we have been in the bodywork business for over 30 years. We are very passionate about the work we put forth and enjoy sharing our knowledge and skills with our students and clients.
Chuck LaFrano – Co-Founder of LMD, Chief Instructor, Medical Massage Therapist
Chuck became a bodyworker in 1985, led to the field in response to his own back pain, followed by a sense of the amazing scope of massage therapy’s effectiveness. He graduated from the Chicago School of Massage Therapy in April of 1987.
While heading the massage team for the Chicago Bears for seven seasons, from 1991-1997, Chuck began to develop his novel approach to medical massage therapy. He taught at The Wellness and Massage Training Institute when it opened in September of 1989 through February, 2009. During that time his classes included basic and advanced Swedish, sports massage, mobilization techniques, myofascial massage, physiology for bodyworkers, and integrative studies. The advanced education classes he designed for WMTI included advanced pressure techniques, floating joint, scar tissue massage, structural patterns, and a philosophical class focused around presence, energy, and intention.
Chuck also managed the massage department at the Heartland Health and Fitness Retreat in Gilman, Illinois, from 1987-1989, and he directed massage at the Grothman Chiropractic Clinic for 5 _ years. Chuck was a guest instructor at the Pittsburgh School of Massage Therapy where he taught his unique approach to Scar Tissue Massage. He also organized and taught a 22-hour, 7-day massage class in Jamaica on four separate occasions. “Scar Tissue Massage,” an article he authored, was published in the May/June, 2001, issue of Massage Magazine.
His medical massage continuing education courses consist of Floating Joint Technique, Advanced Tensegrity Techniques, Scar Tissue Technique, Sports Massage 1 & 2, Style, Rhythm, and Breath, Philosophical Physiology, The “Heart” of the Matter, and Advanced Chair Massage.
Chuck’s Private Practice
For over 27 years Chuck LaFrano has maintained a private practice dedicated to specific problems. As a medical massage therapist he has encountered and had success in eliminating the underlying structural issues for numerous conditions, including carpal tunnel syndrome, nerve impingement, chronic sciatic pain, plantar fascitis, endometriosis, chronic ovarian cysts, a wide variety of autoimmune disorders, TMJ dysfunction, sports injuries (both chronic and acute), joint pain and chronic joint inflammation, and a specialty in post-surgery scar tissue. Chuck has been successful with chronic pain situations and many issues with indeterminate causes and occurrences.
A Personal Note from Chuck LaFrano:
LaFrano Massage Dynamics is about shared understanding, inspiration, and an adventure of discovery. I have been teaching massage therapy classes for over 20 years: it is one of the highest passions in my life. I love the massage class dynamic, the excitement generated in the exploration of concepts and technique, the exchange of perspectives, the joy of realization.
Previously I have taught at the Wellness and Massage Training Institute, an excellent school that was dedicated to sound basic and advanced massage principles. Working in the Continuing Education realm with licensed and established massage therapists, we can focus on advanced medical massage therapy concepts and techniques by exploring them at a higher, broader level and a deeper intensity.
My goal and my passion are to make each of the classes intriguing, fascinating, highly informative, entertaining, and, foremost, instantly applicable to participants’ practices and clients. I will be sure each and every participant understands the concepts behind the courses, and is able to competently perform all techniques. Join our journey into new realms within the infinite universe of medical massage therapy.
Chuck is an approved provider through the NCBTMB and State.
Julie Ankrom – Co-Founder of LMD, Medical Massage Therapist, Instructor
Julie became a bodyworker in 2005. She graduated from the Wellness and Massage Training Institute, completing their advanced program, and received an Associate’s in Applied Science degree from College of DuPage in Illinois. She has taken her practice to new levels by combining her medical massage concepts with Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy and Reiki. Early after graduating, she took numerous continuing education courses to enhance her knowledge and skill allowing her to be able to tailor each session specifically to her client’s needs. While in school, she found a passion in helping others learn more about massage therapy and started tutoring fellow students and assisting instructors in their classes. Two years after graduating, she became a massage therapy instructor herself and started teaching basic massage classes within a health sciences program at a local college. She now administers and teaches at a continuing education school for massage therapy where she can help fellow massage therapists enhance their knowledge and skill. She believes that everyone should be more aware of their bodies and how alternative medicine is a huge benefit to everyday wellness.
She has given back to the community by participating free chair massage for the Susan G Koman 3 day walk for breast cancer, Relay for Life, Bike MS, Got Milk Event (learning how to build wellness through good nutrition and wellness), Walk for Angelman Syndrome, Naperville North Senior Celebration.
Julie has always had a very active lifestyle, enjoying activities such as dancing, hiking, cycling, motorcycling and now recently moving to Colorado she has picked up snowboarding and snowshoeing. She knows personally the balance and self-care it takes to be able to take part in these activities on a daily basis. As a medical massage therapist, her passion lies mostly with athletes and others suffering from scar tissue, unexplained chronic pains, musculoskeletal and connective tissue problems, sports injuries and recovery, nerve impingements or entrapments, etc. For example, she has worked with dancers helping to increase range of motion and runners and cyclists helping to improve their performance. Massage is just one way for them to balance their daily life with their active life.
Her recent interest include working with:
Mastectomy Reconstructive Surgery
The surgery is going to create scar tissue in the connective tissue from the removal of the breast and in the muscle from the insertion of the breast implant usually placed under the Pectoralis Major muscle and often more acutely at the site of lymph node dissection. Scar tissue can cause decreased range of motion and pain in the arm and all tissue around the breast. This will have a physical impact on the body not to mention a traumatic impact on the mind and body. Julie’s medical massage concepts not only therapeutically increase physical recovery but involve a nurturing touch that lends mental and emotional support as well.
Women Suffering from Infertility Medically or Emotionally
She gained knowledge and experience with massage and infertility when she worked for Pulling Down the Moon fertility clinic allowing her to focus on the structural and emotional obstacles causing women to either have trouble getting pregnant or carry out a full term. She prefers to do treatments before fertility drugs are used, but will integrate massage if the decision has already been made. During the cycle of the fertility drugs, a more gentle, energy approach is used as not to disturb the work of the drugs. If the woman does not conceive, the body will need to detox before beginning the next cycle. Julie uses a technique called Raindrop Therapy to help the body with the detox and restore it to its natural state.
During pregnancy, a woman’s body goes through many changes to accommodate the baby. Many musculoskeletal problems can occur simply because of pressure on a nerve by the baby, the extra weight gain, or swelling. Julie focuses on the core of the body first then moves out to restore the stability the body can struggle with in this situation. In the third trimester, the abdominal muscles and connective tissue are stretched way beyond the amount of elasticity will allow sometimes causing scarring called “stretch marks.” Massage can help retain the elasticity in the skin and pliability in the connective tissue to reduce the occurrence of stretch marks. Julie tailors her sessions to her client’s individual needs starting from conception and through out the pregnancy. The sessions can range from pure energy work to hands on treatments including stretches and joint movement.