Massage therapy continues to become increasingly popular, and for a good reason. Data has proven that receiving massage therapy has many benefits, including reducing stress, muscle pain, and tension. Even better, this type of treatment can help those who have cancer, heart disease, or fibromyalgia to control their pain from these conditions better. As more individuals look to receive massage therapy, the need for qualified massage therapists has grown. Listed below are the steps it takes to become a massage therapist:
First of All, What IS Massage Therapy?
A massage therapist's goal is to manipulate the source of pain by pressing and rubbing soft tissues and muscles. There are various types of massage techniques, including circular movements, deep strokes, or taps on the muscle. Different massage therapy branches focus on different goals, including therapy geared towards athletes, individuals in physical therapy, or even infants' therapy. The field is varied, with every client needing specific kinds of treatment.
What Equipment is Used in Massage Therapy?
Another important aspect of massage therapy is the numerous kinds of equipment used in the process, with many different places to purchase them. The number one item to have is a massage table, which is often found on massage sites. A good first step is to browse sites likeEarthlite.comto compare massage tables, as there are many different types available. In addition to the massage table are massage chairs, massage oils, lotions and creams, music, and candles to set a soothing atmosphere and comfortable pillows, towels, and linens, which can also be found on massage sites.
Requirements to become a massage therapistvary by state, though training in a formal program is highly recommended for anyone pursuing a career in massage therapy. During training, students will learn about the various kinds of therapy available, the philosophy behind them, and how to perform them. In addition to these main studies, students will also learn about the health benefits of massages, hygiene practices, and the profession's ethics, all of which are important to becoming a safe and successful massage therapist. Training can range from 500 to 1,000 hours, depending on the course.
Another important part of becoming a massage therapist is to obtain the Massage & Bodywork Licensing Examination or MBLEx. This license certifies that the individual acquiring it is suitable for performing massage therapy on clients. The test is overseen by the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards (FSMTB) and is required in 49 states. The test comprises multiple-choice questions in 7 different sections that ask test-takers to answer questions about human anatomy and physiology, ethics, and massage techniques. After passing the exam, all test-takers will become officially licensed.
There are many places a massage therapist can work, includingday spas, physical therapy offices, nursing homes, hospitals, or chiropractic offices. Conversely, many massage therapists enjoy traveling between different clients' homes, working for themselves. There are many benefits to choosing this self-business avenue, including flexible hours, total control of one's practice, and the ability to build a personal client base. At the same time, working for oneself requires plenty of networking and putting in the extra effort to seek out clients.
While there are many different steps to becoming a massage therapist, the rewards that come with this career path are well worth the effort for both therapist and client alike.