Christina Baptista, RMT - Registered Massage Therapist
Massage Therapy Experience

I began practicing massage therapy in 2003. My first two and a half years of practice were spent working in local multidisciplinary clinics with other registered massage therapists, a kinesiologist, a Jin Shin Do acupressure practitioner and chiropractors. As a result of working with these other practitioners, I gained valuable clinical knowledge and practical skills; I have been building on this knowledge and these skills ever since.

In 2006, I opened my own massage therapy practice in my home; however, life circumstances changed in 2009, at which time I joined another RMT at Energia Massage Therapy, a peaceful home-based clinic in the Gordon Head area of Victoria, BC. 

Beginning in January 2018, I will be relocating my massage therapy practice to the Westshore (Langford). I am looking forward to joining the Station Wellness Collective, a group of holistic, alternative healthcare practitioners, focusing on whole-body health and wellness.

Over the years, I have had experience providing treatment for:

  • Acute & chronic conditions
  • Adhesive capsulitis (“frozen shoulder”)
  • Arthritis (Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoariatic arthritis)
  • Back/neck pain
  • Fibromyalgia & Chronic Fatigue
  • Headaches/migraines
  • Motor vehicle accident (MVA) related whiplash/trauma
  • Neurological conditions (Parkinson’s Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, disc herniation & cerebral palsy, sciatica)
  • Post-surgical joint/muscle rehabilitation
  • Pregnancy related discomfort
  • Repetitive strain injuries (carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis)
  • Sports injuries (strains/sprains)
  • Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction
  • Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS)
 
I also provide ongoing massage therapy on a maintenance and prevention basis for many individuals. I have experience working with a complete lifespan, from infancy to the elderly. 


Teaching Experience

I have three and a half years of experience teaching at the West Coast College of Massage Therapy (September 2008 - April 2011, as well as January 2017-present), both as a clinical supervisor in the student intern clinic and as a teaching assistant in a classroom setting. I thoroughly enjoy sharing my knowledge and skills with the Massage Therapy students. I find teaching in an adult education environment to be both challenging and rewarding.

Birth Doula Experience
 
Bringing support to birth and beyond...

I have especially enjoyed my experience with prenatal and postnatal massage, as well as infant massage.  I completed training as a birth/postpartum doula in 2008 to be able to provide more comprehensive support, during labour/delivery and afterward, to my expectant parents.

Definition of Doula: a woman who assists women during labour and after childbirth. [Origin: 1975–80; < Mod Greek: female servant].=
 
What is a birth doula?
 
A birth doula provides support for a pregnant mother and her partner (e.g. husband, life partner, friend, family member) before, during and after the labour and delivery of the baby.  My goal, as a doula, is to help create a satisfying birth experience for both the mother and her partner.
 
What does a birth doula do?
 
  • provides emotional support for the birthing mother and her partner
  • assists with physical comfort measures (e.g. massage, labour positions, breathing techniques and relaxation/visualization exercises)
  • aids with communication between the mother/partner and the caregivers (e.g. doctor, nurse, midwife)
  • provides continuous care throughout the labour and birth (no shift changes)
  • provides perspective and reassurance to the mother/partner through her training and knowledge of the birth process
  • works for the client, not the hospital or caregiver
  • gives information about medical procedures, examinations and medications (but does not prescribe or recommend medications)
  • provides the mother with information to help her make informed decisions about the birth of her baby
  • suggests questions the mother may like to ask her caregiver to help the mother achieve an empowering birth experience
 
Why did I pursue doula training?
 
In October 2006, my son was born.  We opted to have a doula at his birth.  She provided the emotional support that we needed to get us through an intense labour and delivery.  Her knowledge of the birth process helped to keep both myself and my partner calm and well informed.  She was able to provide physical comforts to help me manage the pain and intensity of each contraction.  Her constant presence was very reassuring and she brought a sense of peace to a very hectic hospital delivery room. 
 
I have always been interested in providing support to women throughout pregnancy through massage therapy; however, after this experience I decided that I would like to take this one step further and provide birth support. The miracle of birth is an incredible one. I am honoured to be a part of this amazing experience with each expectant mother who chooses to have me there.
 
As a mother, I also realize the importance of having support at home in the weeks and months following the birth of a new baby. I didn't feel that I had enough support after my partner had gone back to work following the birth of our son. As I was researching about becoming a birth doula, I came across information about postpartum doula support. I thought it was such a brilliant concept!
 
In June 2008, I completed my DONA International training to become a birth and postpartum doula.  These workshops were incredible! I learned a vast amount of information that I hope to be able to share with any expectant parents who choose to have me as their doula. I felt very well prepared to handle the pressures during labour and delivery. I have thoroughly enjoyed the miraculous birth experiences I have had the honour of being a part of.
 
Whether it is with myself, or another doula, I feel that doula support is invaluable to everyone involved. I believe everyone should have the choice to have a doula, if they wish. Doulas are an integral part of the care-giving team for the mother, father and/or birth partner (friend, family member, etc.).

* Please note: Due to family commitments of my own, I am no longer providing support in the delivery room; however, I still thoroughly enjoy providing pregnancy and postpartum care in my massage therapy practice.

For more information on doulas in the Victoria area, please visit the Greater Victoria Doula Directory.
 
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