“Listening is a creative force. Something quite wonderful occurs when we are listened to fully. We expand, ideas come to life and grow, we remember who we are. Some speak of this force as a creative fountain within us that springs forth; others call it the inner spirit, intelligence, true self. Whatever this force is called, it shrivels up when we are not listened to and it thrives when we are.” —Kay Lindahl

When they asked him why he [agreed to receive massage], he said, “... because she looked at me, right in the eyes, and I thought maybe I was supposed to be touched today.”   -Meg Robsahm

“If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it's not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That's why it's your path.”   ― Joseph Campbell

"Touch was never meant to be a luxury. It is a basic human need. It is an action that validates life and gives hope to both the receiver and the giver. The healing of touch is reciprocal."  –Irene Smith

“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.”   ― Aristotle

"Wonder is almost always possible.  Control may not be."    -Arthur Frank, At the Will of the Body

"We can be highly therapeutic simply by showing up, leaning forward and listening attentively."  -Ira Byock, MD

"For fast-acting relief, try slowing down."  -Lily Tomlin


Call for Posters/Presentations

Deadline for submissions extended to April 1, 2018

5th Oncology Massage Healing Summit

Opening the Circle, Expanding the Tribe

Northwestern Health Sciences University, Bloomington, MN

Apr 27 – 28, 2018

A Call for Posters is being issued for presentation at the 5th Oncology Massage Healing Summit. You are invited to present a poster of your recent research project related to oncology massage.

History: The poster sessions are an integral component of the Oncology Massage Healing Summit. They allow us to bring research to the exhibit hall floor in a professional and educational manner. In 2007 over 175 oncology massage therapists and faculty attend this first time event developed by Gayle MacDonald and Tina Ferner in Toledo, Ohio. Since then we have gathered at Northwestern Health Science University in 2010, 2013, 2016. Our last event brought more than 300 participants from around the world. In 2018 we expect an even greater global representation.

Registration: You are responsible for transporting your poster to and from the Summit. All presenters are required to register for the 2018 Summit at their own expense as we are unable to give registration discounts. If you are unable to attend personally, another member of your research team can bring the poster. Please register at http://www.nwhealth.edu/oncology-massage-summit/

Shipping: Alternately, you can ship the poster for our staff to display on your behalf. All posters and materials can be shipped five (5) days before the conference, or can be brought by the presenter if he/she plans to be present.

Ship your materials – five (5) days before the conference:

Northwestern Health Sciences University

Attn: Betsy Bohl, Continuing Ed Dept.

2501 West 84th Street

Bloomington, MN 55431

Poster Specs:

The suggested poster size is 4' x 6'. Poster materials should be of the size and type that will fit within the allotted space and can be secured with either Velcro or masking tape. The poster should present an abstract of the project that includes the following:

  • your name and credentials
  • organization and location of the project
  • project/poster title
  • introduction and purpose of the project
  • description of the population targeted
  • methods, critical results, and discussion of the significance of the outcome

     Additional Information:

  • Poster presenters are also encouraged to make handouts of their abstracts and findings available to attendees.
  • Tables and electricity will NOT be available due to space and safety requirements.

Deadlines: Please submit an electronic copy abstract for your poster by April 1, 2018.

Poster review guidelines:


  • Does the study address an important problem?
  • Relevance for Massage and Bodywork Profession
  • Alignment with Massage Therapy Foundation Research Agenda

Scientific and Technical Merit:

  • Are the conceptual framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed?
  • Does the applicant acknowledge any potential problem areas?
  • Are the study aims original and innovative
  • Is the design well developed and appropriate to the study aims

Frequently Asked Questions:

Why submit a poster?

  • Increase the variety of points of view aired at the conference
  • Encourage two-way communication
  • Allow detailed and esoteric presentations
  • Provides a forum for “small” presentations

What else do I need to know?

  • Posters are to be set up Friday morning, April 27, 2018 and are to be removed by presenter on Saturday after the last breakout.
  • It is helpful to have the presenter available at the poster to interact with conference attendees during breaks and after lunch.

If you wish to participate, please submit an abstract, (Format below) to Stacey Schultz at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by April 1, 2018.

We hope you will consider participating, as your presence will significantly add to the success of our poster sessions and contribute to the dissemination of research to massage practitioners.

Poster Presentation

Title and Names of Presenters

 Poster Abstract (limit to 100 words): The abstract should clearly reflect the focus of the poster and will be published in the conference program:



"Celebrating the Oncology Massage Community, Be Inspired and Make Connections", was the main theme of the 2016 Oncology Massage Healing Summit  held at Northwestern Health Sciences University in Bloomington, MN. 

Speakers from the United States, France, Scotland and Australia covering topics including lymphedema, pediatric oncology, essential oils and cancer care, oncology rehabilitation, research, ethics, music as healing, presence and many more.

S4OM is a 501(c)3 Nonprofit Organization and gratefully appreciates any and all tax deductible donations.




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About Us

The Society for Oncology Massage (S4OM) exists to support and educate massage therapists, consumers, and health professionals about the value and specific considerations and applications of oncology massage.  When it comes to oncology massage we answer the questions, "What is it?"  "Why is it?" and "Where is it?".

Our Vision

To ease the journey through cancer

Our Mission

  • Support the safe delivery of massage to people who have been diagnosed with cancer
  • Promote an oncology massage education standard
  • Collaborate in research

If you have any questions about the website, please notify the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.