How to Become a Massage Therapist

Massage therapists use the power of touch to heal and restore the body, relieve pain, and promote relaxation.

If you are interested by health and the human body, like working closely with people, and have excellent interpersonal skills then you will likely enjoy a career as a massage therapist.

There are many opportunities for different kinds of work once you are qualified as a massage therapist, as this is a growing industry.

While there is work in private clinics and health centers, companies are also bringing in massage therapists to increase the health and happiness of their employees.

One of the greatest benefits when you become a massage therapist is that you have the chance to make a positive contribution to the health of a client.

Working environments are very relaxed and positive places.

Education Requirements to Become a Massage Therapist

While the education requirements to become a massage therapist vary in every state, in most places you will need some kind of qualification to attain your massage therapy certification.

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Completing a degree in massage therapy will help you to become a better professional, provide your clients with a better service, and ultimately make you more successful in your career.

In most places, you are required to complete an educational program, then sit a state-set exam to receive your qualification.

Before you enroll in a massage therapy school, it’s important to find out what you need to become accredited.

Not all courses on offer will adhere to state requirements.

While in some places, you don’t need any education to practice massage therapy, in others you need anywhere from 330 to 1000 hours in the classroom before you can qualify.

Most states will require you to be registered with the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, or the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards.

You should also be aware that some local counties and municipalities have further licensing laws, which you may need to comply with.

Even if there are no specific rules in your state, you should still check if your city has any requirements.

You can complete a course in massage therapy at vocational school or community college, the lengths of the programs varies somewhat.

Most courses will include massage technique, anatomy, biology, as well as health and nutrition.

Some courses also include subjects on business, accounting, marketing, and ethics.

Massage Therapist Job Description

A massage therapist works one on one with a client to promote their health through touch and massage.

After initially speaking with a client about their needs, and usually taking a health profile, they will use a range of techniques to achieve this.

They will apply pressure to different parts of the body, may relieve muscle knots and tension, help injury, or just promote the release of stress by providing a relaxed environment.

Here are some of the types of massage a therapist may specialize in.

Relaxation Massage – This type of massage simply reduces the tension and stress of the client.

It works by relieving the tension held in muscles, as well as creating a relaxing environment which relieves the mind.
Sports Massage – Working with athletes who have acquired injury from their sport, this massage sets out to reduce pain and promote healing through touch.
Remedial Massage – Remedial massage works with deeper tissue for those suffering from pain or injury.
Corporate Massage – This massage takes place within the workplace.

employees are given a short massage, usually seated which relieves stress and promotes productivity.

Massage Therapist Salary and Career Path

When you become a massage therapist, most people will begin their career working in a clinic, health spa, or consulting suite.

Usually they will start of employed by someone else.

Many go on to start their own businesses.

Some massage therapists are self-employed, working out of their own homes or offering a mobile service.

Some therapists are employed by sports teams, others by large companies to help with staff.

Some work with other professionals such as physiotherapists, or in hospitals.

A large amount of massage therapists are self-employed, many work part-time or casual hours also.

Most massage therapists earn between $11.00 and $25.00 an hour, depending on training and experience.

Massage therapy offers a rewarding career for those who are interested in health, and also enjoy working with people.

It’s also a job that offers flexibility.

The downside to this role is that very few massage therapists work full-time.

There is however, the opportunity to own your own business, as well as to work hours that fit in with other commitments.

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