Massage Therapy Foundation Announces its 2016 Research Grant

Niki Munk, Ph.D.

The Massage Therapy Foundation (MTF), a non-profit organization with a mission to advance the knowledge and practice of massage, has awarded Niki Munk, Ph.D., with a $30,000 research grant in the field of massage therapy for its 2016 granting cycle. Munk is an assistant professor in the Department of Health Sciences at Indiana University (Indianapolis), and was recognized for her study “Massage Perceptions and Experiences for Individuals with Amputations.” The 2016 Research Grant award will go toward Munk’s amputation related therapeutic massage and bodywork (TMB) research program. Currently, little published research exists to explain TMB application, effect, or theoretical approach for individuals with amputations, so Munk aims to fill the gap with this project at Indiana University’s School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. “I am so appreciative of this award from the Massage Therapy Foundation and its support of the study in general and my work towards building research capacity in the massage field, “ says Munk. “While this particular study focuses on individuals with amputation, my ultimate research goals are to reduce accessibility barriers to massage benefit, particularly for those who are economically disadvantaged, disabled, and/or at risk of poor physical health or emotional wellbeing. Support from this award will bring me one step closer to my goals, and I am grateful to the Foundation for this opportunity.”

Since 1993, the Foundation has sought to fund important research in the field of massage therapy to advance the profession. The Massage Therapy Foundation offers one to three research grants for up to $30,000 annually to recipients conducting studies that seek to advance the understanding of specific therapeutic applications of massage, public perceptions and attitudes toward massage therapy, and the role of massage therapy in healthcare delivery. “We are so pleased to award Dr. Munk with the 2016 research grant,” says Massage Therapy Foundation president Jerrilyn Cambron, Ph.D. “The Foundation is pleased to be able to support studies that have such clear clinical relevance for massage therapists.”