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Lassalle back home to make mind-body link

Thursday, May 16, 2013
Rex Lassalle applies one of his massage techniques.

“Where does the mind end and the body begin? Where does the body end and the mind begin?” These are some of the questions osteopath and Shiatsu practitioner Rex Lassalle asks when speaking with patients about their health and well-being. Lassalle will pose these questions as well as demonstrate marma point and massage techniques during a one-day workshop at the Learning Resource Centre, University of the West Indies, St Augustine on May 18. Osteopathy, shiatsu massage are all methods of alternative medicine which Lassalle has been studying and administering for the past 40 years. Marma points are the body’s energy centres where muscles ligaments, bones or joints intersect. The workshop will teach participants how to manage diabetes and high blood pressure using marma points and essential oils. Guidelines for diet and exercise and handling stress will also be covered at the workshop. 


However, Lassalle, who spoke to the T&T Guardian via Skype, said the session will not be didactic. Lassalle added that he does not have a specific healthy lifestyle philosophy, but simply believes it is a process. “I think its about taking responsibility for your health and well-being and discovering what works for you. You have to have a sense of personal awareness. I don’t talk about it in terms of philosophy, but in terms of common sense,” he said. The workshop is about “opening people’s minds to possibilities,” he added. More questions need to be asked about the way certain health issues are treated. Lassalle said questions needs to be asked about certain treatments for diabetes and high blood pressure. He also said questions need to be asked about the true benefits of certain foods deemed healthy. Lassalle, who’s lived in England for more than 20 years, had his last well-being workshop in Trinidad in the 1990s. In the 1980s, he operated a local shop where he sold items such as essential oils and other wellness-related products. He also gave classes on and practiced shiatsu massage and acupuncture. However, the shop was “ahead of its time” and Lassalle returned to Europe where he had been introduced to alternative medicine after leaving Trinidad in 1972.

The 67-year-old qualified as an osteopath at the College of Osteopaths in Hertfordshire, England. He also studied with homeopath Malcolm Stemp and chiropractic specialist Dr M B DeJarnette. Lassalle has also written two books: Grasshopping Through Time, which deals with Japanese Nine Star Ki astrology, and an instructional text, Spa Massage for Shoulders, Neck and Face. He’s worked widely throughout Europe at places like the Mandarin Oriental Spa, Chagpori Tibetan Institute and The Garden Clinic. 
Although he’s been away for a while, Lassalle has noticed certain things about T&T that he believes need addressing. The workshop focuses partly on diabetes, for instance, because of the rise in cases especially among children locally. Saturday’s workshop is not for those who want quick fix solutions to addressing these health issues, said Lassalle. “There are simple ways to embrace and engage in activities that support for your health and well-being and I will be sharing this (at the workshop) and giving people a set of tools for understanding some of these issues,” he said. For more information about the workshop, contact Fallon Lutchmansingh:  [email protected] or 396-7683. Or Anya Ram at [email protected] or 742-8242. 

Lassalle the radical
Before embarking on his career in wellness, Lassalle was known for his role in the 1970 Black Power Revolution. A former soldier, Lassalle along with colleague Raffique Shah led a group of soldiers who mutinied and took hostages at the army barracks at Teteron, Chaguaramas in April 1970. Following the mutiny he was charged with over 50 offences including treason and mutiny. Although he was never actually tried for treason, he was court martialled in March 1971 and sentenced to 15 years imprisonment. He appealed, won the appeal, and was eventually set free after an appeal by the State to the Privy Council and was freed on July 27, 1972. In total, he served 27 months in prison. Source: Wikipedia




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