Show cover of A Touch of Costa Rica

A Touch of Costa Rica

A Touch of Costa Rica is a wellness travel podcast that shares inspirational stories, and introduces you to the people, places, and priceless journeys that happen at the Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy. A Touch of Costa Rica highlights the transformational massage therapist training programs as well as Costa Rica travel tips from the Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy and Yoga community. Hosted and produced by Qiana Martin in collaboration with the Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy and Yoga, each week’s episode takes listeners on a life changing trip to the Samara Beach community in Costa Rica. To learn more about CRSMT, visit


You Have Everything You Need
In our final episode of 2023, we revisit our powerful conversations with massage industry groundbreakers Andrew Biel, Rachel Beider, Allison Denney and Ruth Werner. Let their personal journeys, advice and reflections inspire you to take the next step on your massage path right now.To learn more about CRSMT, visit
19:04 12/24/23
Pioneering Innovation in Massage
What will inspire your next big idea? Lyla Keeler joins us to talk about her journey creating the LMT 1 table. As the first female massage therapist to receive a U.S. Patent for a massage table design, she shares how her one-of-a-kind apparatus offers a game-changing experience for therapists, clients and the health industry. Also, the veteran massage therapist and inventor offers an inside scoop on how you can have the opportunity to showcase your skillset at upcoming massage competitions. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
35:40 11/26/23
My Global Journey for Specialized Training
Where will your quest for specialized training lead you? Erin Maranjian joins us to talk about her global journey to acquire specialized manual lymph drainage and lymphedema therapy education. Also, the veteran massage therapist and MLD educator shares her insights on the value of practitioners’ work changing over time. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
27:35 10/29/23
Bartering My Way to a Multimillion-Dollar Brand
How can I start my own thing with minimal resources? If you are asking yourself this question, this episode is for you. Rachel Beider shares how she mastered the art of bartering her time, massage skills and resources to create PRESS Modern Massage in New York City. She takes us behind the scenes of her multimillion-dollar business to demystify the nuts and bolts of growing and operating a successful massage brand. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
37:42 9/24/23
Forging My Own Path to Play
Who am I as a massage therapist? It is a common question that bodyworkers ask during their journey in the industry. Allison Denney has amassed more than 54 million YouTube views inspiring fellow professionals to operate in their authenticity, and she joins us for an in-depth discussion about her experiences as a therapist, business owner, wellfluencer and product creator. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
29:10 8/27/23
Returning to a Familiar Place for a Powerful Release
Ready to travel back in time at Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy? Almost two decades ago, licensed massage therapist Julie Alvarez served as the Kinesiology instructor for the school. She joins us to share her journey to Samara, early experiences there and powerful return to the school as a participant in Shannon Gilmartin’s Modern Cupping Therapy Continuing Education Workshop.  Also, Julie reminisces on the places and experiences that she holds dear in and around Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
25:50 7/30/23
Curiosity & Service: Creating A Massage Therapist’s Guide to Pathology
Will an ad beckon you to your destiny? When legendary massage educator Ruth Werner happened upon a small ad for a massage school in the back of a newspaper, it set off a chain of events that has resulted in a 35+ year career in the industry and authoring seven editions of the gold standard textbook, “A Massage Therapist’s Guide to Pathology.” She talks about her journey, standout episodes from her own podcast tackling medical conditions that therapists encounter and her upcoming return to Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy in the fall. Also, Ruth shares the experiences that bring her joy in Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
42:04 6/25/23
Reconnecting to My Caregiver DNA
After a series of life-altering experiences, Julius Arciaga took a career-changing leap that led him to massage school and later to the campus of Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy. The medical massage therapist, reiki practitioner and 2022 CRSMT Oncology and Caregiver Retreat participant joins us to share how his journey to becoming a holistic health professional and time in Samara has helped him to expand the possibilities of his compassionate touch. Also, Julius draws upon his former culinary expertise to share his take on the food scene in Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
36:05 5/28/23
Dancing with the Structure and Energy of Zero Balancing
When ballet dancer Lisa Bardarson made the powerful decision to choose massage as her career dance partner, it transported her to a lifelong journey of helping others and deepening her understanding of her own body. The 2023 CRSMT Zero Balancing guest instructor joins us to share how she uses her massage therapy, yoga, zero balancing and dance skillset to address the needs of her clients and community. Also, Lisa will share her unique perspective of living between two countries and offers advice for others who aspire to make a home for themselves in Tamarindo, Costa Rica. To learn more about CRSMT, visit  
18:56 4/30/23
Dreaming the Blueprint for Manual Therapists
Is your big idea for massage therapy right around the corner? In celebration of our 50th episode, legendary author Andrew Biel joins us for a rare interview to share the mind-blowing origin story of his textbook, Trail Guide to the Body.Also, Drew will give his take on how publishing has evolved to serve the needs of manual therapists and how those who inspire to contribute can get their start.To learn more about CRSMT, visit
19:18 3/26/23
Advocating for Inclusive Massage Research
Do you know the importance of massage research? Dr. Ann Blair Kennedy joins us to share her journey in massage and her involvement with bringing bodywork practitioners and clients into research studies, as researchers, to better understand treatment outcomes and patterns of care. Also, Dr. Kennedy will share her thoughts on how to practice cultural humility and safety with your colleagues and clients. To learn more about CRSMT, visit  
34:14 2/26/23
Stepping Into a New Role
When the pandemic brought Cody Garcia’s touring play to a halt, they were presented with an opportunity to pursue their massage interest. They share their unique path to Samara and experience at CRSMT. Also, Cody will share their encounter with a rare, natural phenomenon in Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
15:32 1/29/23
First Impressions Create Lasting Impressions
In our final episode of 2022, we hear from CRSMT community members Stacy Allen, Kathy Brady, Morgan Cox, Kelly Nichols-Scott and Heidi Roy. They share their first impressions, advice for listeners who desire to join the holistic health community and powerful takeaways from their own personal journeys at the school.To learn more about CRSMT, visit
14:26 12/25/22
From Learning the Business to Being in Business
American small business expert Melinda Emerson said, “You never lose in business, either you win or you learn.” In this week’s highlight episode, CRSMT Instructor Victoria Moutahir and CRSMT alum Bomani Clarke talk about their experiences on campus and unique journeys as business owners. To learn more about CRSMT, visit
14:02 12/18/22
The Reward of Achieving Your Goals
From her childhood desire to help others using physical touch to her teenage dream of enrolling at the Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy, Sky Lauher shares how her journey to providing bodywork services for mothers has been filled with memorable moments, gifts and magic. Also, she reveals two of her cherished places in Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
19:19 12/11/22
Educating Others on the Massage Business
CRSMT instructor Victoria Moutahir shares how a post workout massage referral transported her to a 25-year career teaching students, mentoring young professionals and educating decisionmakers on the massage business.Also, she reveals her favorite daily routine when she’s in Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit
21:42 12/4/22
Following the Body, Mind and Spirit
CRSMT alum Bomani Clarke shares how he was transported from a decades long federal career to arriving in Samara and the personal revelations that he received during his time there. He’ll also introduce listeners to the exclusive holistic health service that he provides clients in his one-of-a-kind healing space.  To learn more about CRSMT, visit  
34:31 11/27/22
Following Your Childhood Desire to Help Others
Did you have a childhood aspiration to be of service to others? CRSMT alum Jen Andrews shares how massage and other holistic health modalities supported her early life experiences with physical pain and complex PTSD. She’ll also introduce listeners to her passion for the innovative practice of psychedelic therapy.  To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
26:10 11/20/22
Meet 3 Powerful Changemakers in Samara
Did you miss our captivating conversations with some of our local neighbors? If so, we have you covered.In this week’s highlight episode, CRSMT Community Changemakers Beatriz Jirón (Natour by Bea), Andrea Keith (Asociación CREAR) and Barbara Miller (Costa Rica TEFL) share how they are passionately healing, teaching and bridging connections in Samara.To discover Bea’s unique tours, go to learn how you can support Asociación CREAR, visit ww.asociacioncrear.orgTo embark on a linguistic adventure with Costa Rica TEFL, click https://costaricatefl.comFor more information about CRSMT, visit
16:26 11/13/22
Massage is a Springboard for Your Specialty
How can massage help you connect with modalities that resonate deeply with you?  In this week’s highlight episode, CRSMT Educators Thomas Dubois and Shannon Gilmartin join CRSMT alums Kelly Nichols-Scott and Heidi Roy to talk about their experiences on campus and how they were inspired to pursue diverse passions in holistic health. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
14:36 11/6/22
Learning a Second Language to Bridge Cultural Gaps
Ready to speak your way into powerful, cross-cultural experiences? Costa Rica TEFL Founding Director Barbara Miller shares how a visit to Colombia led her on a journey to creating immersive language training programs for teachers in Samara. It’s a conversation filled with inspiration and insights that will encourage you to take the leap to speak the local language during your time abroad. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
22:56 10/30/22
Fueling Your Passion for Lifelong Learning
What is one place where you have the opportunity to connect with a recent massage therapy graduate, an established professional and award-winning continuing education provider? You can meet them on the CRSMT campus participating in one of our amazing continuing education offerings. In this week’s highlight episode, Morgan Little, Jessica Luhr and Ariana Vincent talk about the variety of their continuing education experiences and their passion for ongoing learning. Also, Ariana and Jessica reveal how leveling up your knowledge on this campus can be the perfect experience for you. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
13:58 10/23/22
Birthing a Massage Career as a Single Mom
Can a holistic health profession be the perfect complement for your vision as a parent? CRSMT Guest Instructor Kathy Brady shares how her mom goals inspired a career changing leap to massage. It’s a journey filled with practical tips, unique insights and invaluable takeaways that will inspire you to value your  one-of-a-kind path. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
38:22 10/16/22
Going Beyond the Spine
What’s the value of extending your abilities beyond hands-on care? Dr. Steven Capobianco D.C. joins us to talk about his journey growing up on a Canadian farm, embracing the importance of caring for the environment and teaching CRSMT students the power of using kinesiology tape as an intervention for their clients.  Dr. Capobianco will also share the exact moment at his favorite place in Samara that he considers life changing and mindboggling. To learn more about CRSMT, visit  
32:56 10/9/22
A Guide for Your Longevity
Wondering how you can be intentional with your length of service as a holistic health practitioner? We have you covered.  In this week’s highlight episode, Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy instructors T.J. Ford, Shannon Gilmartin and Marla Simms share wisdom from their combined 75+ years of experience in the holistic health industry. Also, T.J. and Shannon reveal the why behind their love for the water in Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit  
13:21 10/2/22
We've Been In Your Shoes
Did you know the magical touch of Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy is not just reserved for its students? In this unique highlight episode, CRSMT Admissions Team Member Morgan Cox, Director of Education Jan Frus, Director of Marketing Bill Burden and Executive Director Tess McGrath share their own life changing reflections about Costa Rica and CRSMT. Also, Morgan, Jan and Tess reveal some of their local faves for listeners to experience during their time in Samara. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
18:56 9/25/22
Expansion Awaits You in Samara
Ready to learn about some of our students’ most impactful moments? We have you covered.  In this latest highlight episode, Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy alums Stacy Allen, Heather Klein, Jessica Luhr and Heidi Roy share unforgettable memories from their personal experiences on campus. Also, Stacy, Heather and Jessica reveal the people, places and things in the community that brought them joy.  To learn more about CRSMT, visit  
12:38 9/18/22
Guiding Your Healing Walk in Samara
Ready to learn about the powerful energy centers located around Samara? Bea Jiron joins us to talk about her childhood life of healing, transformative experience at the Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy and ability to help others restore their spirit with walks in the jungle. Also, Bea shares her inspiration for organizing one of the premiere local attractions, Samara’s Farmers Market. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
33:04 9/11/22
Winning Hands
While working as a member of the restaurant industry in Las Vegas, massage was not on Heidi Roy’s radar. The Rana 2015 alum joins us to share how a universal nudge led her to Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy and later to the Las Vegas Strip casinos as a poker massage therapist. Heidi will also offer listeners practical tips and insights that they can use to expand their own businesses.  To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
26:01 9/4/22
Living the Dream
Ready to discover your unlimited possibilities with massage? CRSMT Mariposa 2021 alum, Stacy Allen joins us to share how an acupressure experience led her to Samara and releasing the limitations on what is possible for her holistic health career. Stacy will also tell you about a local business she loves to support not too far from campus. To learn more about CRSMT, visit 
16:15 8/28/22