MRT Training Exercise
- Establish valid physical conditions for MRT testing using the anterior deltoid for this MRT exercise.
- The patient’s arm is extended at a right angle to the front of the body at or slightly below shoulder level. The elbow is kept straight to focus the MRT challenge force on the intended test muscle. I usually ask the patient to make their hand into a soft fist.
- The patient is instructed to identify a level of resistance. Something like this: “Imagine that each time I ask you to resist that you consistently put forward the effort required to hold up a five pound dumbbell.” “If you are consistent in your level of effort, then we can be reasonably sure that any difference in the quality of the muscle contraction we notice is a reflection of a response of your nervous system to the OTC/OTC content of the MRT query and not a reflection of inconsistent effort on your part.” “I will switch sides from time to time so muscle fatigue doesn’t confuse the test process and if you feel a little muscle fatigue at any time, just hold up the other arm and I’ll know to switch sides.”
- The patient is told when to resist for the first couple of MRT challenges. The practitioner asks the patient to notice that they are being asked to resist (in the case of a spoken delivery of subject matter) when they hear the completion of a question during the MRT procedure and when they feel the practitioner preload the test muscle slightly just before application of the challenge force (this will happen even if delivery of subject matter is unspoken). This way you won’t have to tell the patient to resist for each MRT challenge.
- Preferred practitioner contact to the patient for delivering the MRT challenge force is made by grasping with the fingertips just proximal to the patient’s knuckles. If the patient has difficulty holding the wrist straight, use finger tip pressure just proximal to the wrist. It is important that the contact used favors consistent application of force. Avoid rocking back and forth on the test contact point as this can cue the patient and color responses.
- Determining subject matter and procedure for an MRT training exercise should be done with the goal of indicating whether OTC/OTC level communication is occurring between subject and tester. With repetition, a training exercise that is valid will build the skill by which the practitioner is able to reach out to the patient with “mental pseudopodia”, projected extensions of the practitioner’s mind. In this MRT exercise we will select simple and concrete examples for subject matter to develop competence in the MRT procedure.
- Some MRT training exercises will work better than others. I have used tests in which the subject selects one of several objects known to both the subject and tester, where the subject smells or tastes from a couple of samples, and where the subject holding a toothpick is pressing on the point end or side. Consistency is not seen with these sorts of tests when the tester silently does MRT to determine a choice that the subject has made. This may have to do with the fact that the nervous system filters sensory information and only 1% of all sensory input is used to determine motor response per Guyton.
- I have found a training exercise that always works well. The exercise is done silently, so as to remove the test subject’s conscious mind from the equation. The practitioner mentally selects a body part of the MRT subject and indicates so by his/her focus of intention and by contact or by gesture to the selected body part and silently does MRT through a list of four or five choices, one of which is the selected part. If the practitioner has selected heart, and does the following MRT, “Am I indicating the liver, small intestine, heart, left shoulder, right shoulder, etc?”, then an affirmative MRT result should happen when the practitioner concepts “heart”. To test whether any sucha reponse is a real MRT response and not due to fatigue or to the patient slipping out of rapport with the practitioner, use the “It is/Is not?” test. It can be done silently to confirmation MRT validity. Using this “It is/Is not?” test should produce alternating affirmative/negative responses if the MRT response is valid.
- A variation on this test is for the practitioner to bring to mind a body part, e.g., the heart and then to select in turn various body parts and MRT, “Is this the heart?” <test>. Only when the practitioner indicates by gesture and/or intention the selected body part (heart) does the patient demonstrate the affirmative MRT response.
- The practitioner brings to mind a clear and well defined “picture thought” of the subject matter of each MRT challenge, and attempts to non-verbally “speak” this to the patient. It is always our intention to deliver such a “picture thought”, whether delivering the NMT dialog silently or out loud. Silent delivery of a thought is much like what happens when we direct our conscious intention toward someone we notice in a crowd and they turn and look at us, apparently having sensed some unspoken thought. Regular practice improves this skill! (See Sheldrake – “The Sense of Being Stared At”)
- This exercise should be done on a regular basis until the practitioner finds that they can enter into this sort of OTC communication and immediately produce consistent MRT responses at any time with any test subject. That may mean doing this simple exercise several times a day and doing this with various test subjects to build the skill. Once a practitioner can create such a response in any patient every time, they are ready to begin using MRT in the application of an NMT session. If this exercise can not be done with close to 100% accuracy and consistency, then you can not be assured that the simplest application of NMT will be optimally effective.
- The physical part of MRT is easy but there are some fine points to take note of. Deliver the OTC/OTC subject matter with clear intention and in one flowing thought (with or without verbalization). Apply the MRT challenge force as you complete OTC delivery of the full thought picture. Preload the test muscle with perhaps a pound of pressure. This tells the patient to be prepared for the MRT challenge force that is about to be delivered and puts the test muscle in a ready condition to be tested. The patient should otherwise keep the test muscle relatively relaxed between MRT challenges.
- The challenge force from the practitioner needs to be consistent from one challenge to the next so that we do not introduce an unnecessary variable into our testing, i.e., compare apples to apples not apples to oranges. The patient should also use a consistent level of effort to resist each challenge, about what it takes to hold up a 4 or 5 pound dumbbell. Inconsistency of effort masks the difference from one challenge to the next that we are trying to reveal.
- The amplitude of deflection produced in the MRT challenge should be the minimum needed to demonstrate a clear MRT response. For the inexperienced MRT tester, larger deflection may be necessary at first, but more subtlty comes with experience and a clear response will be noted with very light force and little amplitude of deflection. Subtle testing is less fatiguing to patient and practitioner.
- Did I really just observe a weak response? That can be confirmed by applying the “It is/Is not?” test, which will either produce a clearly contrasting MRT indicating validity, or will produce no contrast, indicating an invalid MRT response. Remember, MRT is all about delicately listening to the body, not trying to force a response to occur!!!
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