MELT instructor profile: Shannon Hoell

To say that MELT has completely changed the life of Shannon Hoell is not an overstatement.

The licensed massage therapist and MELT instructor based in Eugene, Oregon has been pain-free, lost over 50 pounds and has doubled her income—all because she discovered MELT.

She found MELT in 2010 after her sister Heather suffered a debilitating injury after getting hit by a car while walking in 2009. Heather moved to Portland, Oregon from the Bay Area to be closer to her family during her recovery and found Sara Bethell’s MELT class.

shannon hoell

MELT became a major part of Heather’s recovery process, so she encouraged Shannon to try it. Shannon, although averse to group classes, reluctantly gave it a try “with great trepidation and low expectations.”

“Within 20 minutes of the class I was able to lay on my back comfortably for the first time in eight years,” she recalled.

Shannon had been suffering from a bulging disc in her lower back for almost a decade and although the pain was managed through frequent massage and chiropractic care, the pain was still there. MELT has helped her stay pain-free.

“I have been completely pain free for over two years and there is no form of exercise that makes my back hurt,” said Shannon. “I can even run. I have lost 50 pounds in the process. It’s amazing what being out of pain has done for my body.”

How MELT helped her business

Of course being a massage therapist specializing in injury management and pain relief, Shannon immediately starting thinking about thinking about how she could use MELT to help her clients immediately after experiences the benefits herself. She became fully certified in May 2012 and started teaching individual and group MELT classes in June of that year.

“I have always worked primarily with people with chronic pain. Frequently their doctors tell them that exercise will help with the pain. However, time and time again, I have seen clients start a gentle yoga class or walking program only to injure themselves and give up,” she said. “MELT is the perfect first step for these people to help get them out of pain and enable them to move more.”

It’s been working on all fronts. Since offering MELT to her clients, Shannon has quickly grown her business and opened her own 1,100-square-foot studio in June 2013 with a MELT room that can fit up to 16 students and two massage offices.

“My massage practice is full so I rent to a second massage therapist so she can help me keep up with demand,” said Shannon, who now teaches seven weekly MELT classes, four regular MELT classes and three Length and Strength classes, at her studio Eugene MELT & Massage. One of the Length and Strength classes is a corporate wellness class for a local tech company that brings over 16 of their staff to MELT at her studio each week. She also works extensively with people with Parkinson’s Disease and has partnered with Parkinson’s Resources of Oregon to do workshops.

She currently has a waiting list for all of her Length and Strength and regular MELT classes because they are at capacity.

Helping others stay healthy

“I have gone from seeing 20 people a week to close to 100. I love MELT because it reduces my clients’ dependence on me,” she said. “Before MELT if a client experienced a flare-up of pain they had to wait until I could get them on the table to ‘be fixed.’ MELT puts the power in their hands and gives them the tools to help themselves.”

Not only has MELT changed Shannon’s life, it has also helped change the lives of those that know her.

“MELT helps stick the results of my hands-on work and allows clients to go longer between bodywork sessions. This allows me to see more people. I find this work to be so satisfying to teach and amazing to watch my students’ bodies change over time,” said Shannon. “I have always loved my job but I am even more excited to get to go to work now. MELT is, by far, the most effective modality I have ever worked with for reducing chronic pain and increasing functionality.”

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