Childress gives new meaning to tune up

I met Michael Childress at an Art-in-the-Park in Ft. Madison. His display was set up across from mine with a group of artists called Artist Trax Studio. We were both displaying metal art, however, mine was the rusty-junk kind, his was shiny, brushed aluminum.
Michael Childress stands in front of his Body Tuning Table which he built. The patient lies on the table, Michael gets under it, and plays musical notes on four piano wires attached to the underside of the table. The vibrations and musical notes make for quite a unique massage. His largest piece didn’t look like art to me. It looked more like a bed, a bed made of brushed aluminum. Art is in the eyes of the beholder. I noticed he invited passersby to lie down on the bed, then he would get under the bed and perform some type of massage, a musical, vibrating massage. My curiosity was aroused.
I sidled over for a closer look. Michael is quite friendly and articulate. He invited me to lie down on his Body Tuning Table for a massage. What the heck? There was a pain right between my shoulder blades from all the lifting of my heavy sculptures. Actually, there is some degree of pain in my back most of the time and I’m a great user/abuser of ibuprofen. Michael got under the bed and began twanging on four piano strings he has stretched on the underside of the bed. A musical vibration came up through the structure and through my body. It seemed to focus on the tight muscles between my shoulder blades. He twanged a long, low note that trilled off into a sharp trill. The pain in my back followed the vibrating note up and out of my body. I looked up into the leaves of a tree which the bed was under. I was so relaxed that I dozed off into a heavenly, peaceful trance.
Michael offered his strong, masseur arm to aid me in sitting up. The pain between my shoulder blades was gone. It is still absent today, over a week after his “body tuning.”
I had to know more. Michael Childress invented and built this Body Tuning Table. He is a welder at a local manufacturing facility in Ft. Madison, a former massage therapist, and a member of a band. He knows how music and vibration/massage can work together to change moods and alter the physical body. Every human body has a frequency that can vary depending on circumstances. He finds that frequency, plays to it, and massages it.
He came up with the idea of combining vibrating musical tones with massage after his massage table broke down and he had to repair it. Voila! The Body Tuning Table. He has applied for a patent for his invention and is looking for an investor to help him get started in manufacturing these Body Tuning Tables.
Actually, as with most inventors, he has many ideas for inventions swirling in his head. I’m going to go out on a limb here and put him in the category of American inventors such as Edison, Ford, and the Wright brothers. I have read biographies of these famous inventors and there are a lot of similarities. Like Edison, Childress has an unquenchable thirst for discovery and knowledge. Ford built his first internal combustion engine in his and his wife’s kitchen. The Wright brothers were bicycle mechanics. The Wright brothers’ father was a Bishop of the Church of the United Brethren in Christ. Childress’ father was a Bishop of the Pentecostal Church and also an inventor. Ford and Childress hail from Michigan, a veritable hotbed for inventors. Like Edison, Ford and the Wright brothers, Childress is self-taught.
Who knows where Michael Childress and his Body Tuning Table will be a year from now or twenty years from now? He sees applications for his device in relieving the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease, help in dealing with mental illness, depression, and schizophrenia. If you can change the mood of a person, help them to feel better, relieve stress and pain, whether it be a knee or the mind, you have given them a gift. Childress’ goal is to help people.
Right on, Michael Childress. You are limitless within your limits.
His email address is a good story? Call or text Curt Swarm in Mt. Pleasant at 319-217-0526, email him at or find him on Facebook. Curt’s stories are also read at 106.3 FM in Farmington.

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