How to Pursue Massage Therapy Careers
The natural healing power of massage therapy has made the industry highly profitable and popular. Students can enter educational training inside many natural healing colleges that have massage programs. Learning how to pursue massage therapy careers can be done by obtaining further information.
The uses of massage therapy include treating pain, minimizing stress, and rehabilitating individuals from injuries. By using different techniques to massage the soft-tissue of the body professionals are able to help individuals relax by influencing general health and wellness. To pursue an education students need to know what educational training opportunities area available. Training is offered at the certificates and associate’s degree level. Pursuing one of the many available programs enables students to enter careers as massage therapists in two years or less.
To begin pursuing education students need to research colleges that offer programs. This step is best combined with making the decision as to which level of training will be pursued. By choosing an educational training path students can enroll in colleges that provide massage therapy programs that match their professional goals.
The general standard is to complete at least 500 hours of training. Most students complete this requirement by entering general certificate programs. Students are immediately immersed in massage and natural medicine courses to train them for the profession. Structural bodywork is studied as it relates to Western and Eastern practices. Students learn to properly manage pain and muscle dysfunction through their understanding of several modalities. Coursework provides students with applicable knowledge in pathology, trigger point therapy, anatomy, and professional development.
If further education is not desired, students will need to complete one final step. After successfully obtaining certificates students are required to obtain licensure. The stipulations may change from state to state so students need to be sure to check regulation standards. Two nationally recognized tests could be completed. The Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination or the National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork will need to be completed to become a massage therapist. Exams test students on their knowledge of theory and practical application of massage therapy.
Students have several options once they have obtained general certificates. Many colleges provide specific programs that focus on one modality. Possible options include:
- Sports Massage
Advanced certificate programs typically offer students the opportunity to study one specific type of modality. For example, students can focus on sports injuries by studying orthopedic massage. Another possible option is learning to work with women by studying pre-natal or post-partum massage therapy. Students can expect to take common courses that include acupressure, spa elements, body mechanics, and massage therapeutics. Concentrated coursework will be based on the type of modality chosen. Students that want to enter the profession and create personal businesses should find colleges that offer associates degree programs. Education explores general massage therapy techniques, concentrated areas, and business essentials.
When pursuing an accredited education in massage therapy students should consider what career goals they have to ensure the proper education is earned. Enter training and begin a fulfilling and profitable career as a massage therapist. The Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA) can fully accredit massage therapy schools and colleges that offer quality career training.
DISCLAIMER: Above is a GENERIC OUTLINE and may or may not depict precise methods, courses and/or focuses related to ANY ONE specific school(s) that may or may not be advertised at PETAP.org.
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Written By: Renata McGee
Renata McGee is a staff writer for PETAP.org. Locate the Top Schools Massage Therapy Training as well as Online Massage Therapy Schools at PETAP.org, your Partners in Education and Tuition Assistance Programs.