Archive for the ‘Massage Therapy’ Category

Essential credentials for massage therapists

Saturday, September 29th, 2012

Not only will attending massage therapy school give you the knowledge and skills you need to excel in this line of work, but it’ll also prepare you to meet your state’s individual regulations. That’s right – in order to provide massage therapy to clients, your state will most likely require you to possess a certificate or license.

As a result, you’re going to want to find out what types of credentials your state expects you to have before you become a massage therapist. That way, you can decide what kind of massage therapy schools are worth a look.

What do you need to practice?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 43 states and the District of Columbia have regulations in place for massage therapy. This means anybody who wants to provide these therapeutic services had to hold either certification, which they can earn in an accredited training program, or licensure, which is awarded to those who pass an exam.

What type of exam do you take?

Each state’s massage therapy licensure board will decide which credentials are valid and which do not qualify people to practice. However, if you’ve got your sights set on a career in this field, you could end up taking the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination, the National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork or a state exam, the BLS states.

How important are these credentials?

Licensure and certification are extremely important. Just put yourself in the shoes of a client. Would you want to go to somebody who isn’t considered to be a professional?

It’s also important for you to remember that with certification, you gain a competitive edge, more job opportunities and credibility, according to the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.

So what do you think? Still excited about starting a career in massage therapy? Let us know in the comment space below.

Two benefits of becoming a massage therapist

Monday, September 17th, 2012

When you’ve got a passion for the field you’re working in, every hour you spend on the job provides its fair share of benefits. While a paycheck is certainly nice, going to work every day will lose its meaning after a while if it’s all about the money. Fortunately, if you plan on enrolling in massage therapy school, you’re unlikely to have this problem. After all, various aspects of the massage therapy profession are known to be rewarding. Here are just two benefits of becoming a massage therapist.

Help people live better lives

There are many reasons why someone might go to see a massage therapist. Maybe a pain in their neck or lower back is getting in the way of their everyday routine. Perhaps individuals were recently involved in a car accident and need help overcoming whiplash. No matter what the reason, massage therapists are trained to provide the relief these patients seek.

Just knowing that your training is being put to good use may be enough to make you feel good about getting up and going to work.

Get to know new people every day

If you’ve got an interest in taking massage therapy classes, there’s a good chance you’re probably something of a people person. After all, you’ll be working with clients every day. Some of them you’ll know from past sessions, while others will be complete strangers. Either way, it’ll be your job to make them feel comfortable while treating whatever ails them.

What’s the upside? While other people are sitting at desks all day staring at computer screens, you’re on your feet interacting with new individuals. Not only that, you’re also making a difference in their lives.

So there are just two reasons – on top of a steady paycheck – why a career in massage therapy is worth some consideration. Can you think of any others? Let us know in the comment space below.

Professions that are thriving in the current economy

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Professions that are thriving in the current economy

So far this year, the national unemployment rate has see-sawed between 8.3 percent and 8.1 percent, which does not do much to inspire confidence in today’s jobseekers. While there are certainly fields struggling to make a recovery, others, such as those that technical schools can prepare you for, are thriving.

If you’ve been searching for a line of work that won’t leave you unemployed again a few months later, maybe you should consider one of the following professions:

Veterinary technicians and technologists

By 2020, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) says job opportunities for veterinary technicians and technologists will experience a 52% increase. This incredibly rapid growth is faster than the 14% average of all occupations and related to the nation’s expanding pet population. The expected rise in job openings is also linked to support for food and animal safety, as well as public health and national disease programs.

If helping animals get better sounds appealing, you might have the most luck finding work in rural areas, after you finish up at veterinary technician schools of course.

As for the type of pay you can expect, PayScale says these professionals can make between $19,978 and $39,021 each year.

Medical assistants

Animals get sick and suffer injuries, and so do humans. So if you have a greater interest in helping people get back on the road to recovery, you’ll be pleased to learn that medical assistants are also expected to experience a faster-than-average increase in jobs. According to the BLS, an aging baby boomer population and new technology, like electronic health records, are projected to fuel a 31% increase in jobs through 2020. So if this sounds appealing, it may be time to start considering medical technical schools.

On a yearly basis, medical assistants can make anywhere from $20,467 and $36,412, according to PayScale.

Electricians

As long as people live in homes and own businesses, they’re going to need electricity. That’s why the BLS expects electricians to see a 23% rise in employment opportunities through 2020. As the solar and wind energy fields continue to grow, electricians will be needed to make sure people can take advantage of all the renewable energy being produced.

So where do you have the best chances of landing a job? According to the BLS, positions within factories should be pretty stable. Ultimately though, those who have a breadth of skills could do the best in this line of work, so consider enrolling in electrician schools.

PayScale states that electricians can earn between $27,083 and $75,440 a year.

Massage therapists

If you’ve been debating going to massage therapy school, the fact that the BLS says jobs prospects for this profession are expected to increase by 20% through 2020 might be all the incentive you need. Part of this growth is due to a greater demand for massage services while the presence of more spas and clinics means there’s a need for more workers in this field.

Massage therapists can make anywhere from $19,910 to $105,920 per year, according to PayScale.

Do any of these professions appeal to you? If so, which ones? Let us know in the comment space below.

Licensing issues for aspiring massage therapists

Saturday, September 8th, 2012

Licensing issues for aspiring massage therapists

There’s little doubt that when it comes to pain relief, a good massage can do a world of good for people who are suffering. Today, massage isn’t just a fancy way for people to blow off steam at health spas – it’s a vital part of many physical therapists’ toolkit. There have been many studies published on the benefits of massage, and this emerging field has experienced a surge in popularity in recent years. However, before you can look for work or start your own practice as a massage therapist after finishing up at technical schools, you’ll need a few things.

State massage therapy license

This is probably the most important piece of documentation a massage therapist can have. Depending on where you live, the licensing requirements for massage therapists will differ. However, most states insist on a certain number of hours of study to qualify for a license. For example, Alaska doesn’t have any rigid credentialing guidelines in place for massage therapists, whereas the state of Alabama requires these professionals to have completed 650 hours of training before applying.

Local licensure

In addition to a state license, many cities, towns and counties across the country require additional certification from massage therapists. This may not be as exhaustive as the state license, but if you try to open a business without one, you could get into some trouble with the local authorities.

If you’re not sure what’s expected of you as a massage therapist, the technical training schools you’re enrolled at should be able to tell you what you need. Many massage therapy schools help students with their licensing and certification, so you may not need to worry about it. If in doubt, check with your course administrator.

Examinations

There are two primary exams you’ll have to pass in order to become a qualified massage therapist – the National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage (NCETM) and the National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCETMB). By passing one or both of these tests, you’ll become a fully certified massage therapist.

In addition to passing the exams, you’ll also be expected to agree to abide by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork’s (NCBTMB) standards of practice and code of ethics. These two documents outline how, as a NCBTMB-affiliated professional, you’ll be expected to behave when working with clients and representing yourself as a business owner.

Again, different states and cities will have their own regulations. Some areas may only require the NCETM, whereas others will ask for the NCETMB before you can legally open your own shop or look for work.

Many massage therapy schools are affiliated with professional organizations like the NCETMB, so don’t worry too much about these credentials – it’ll all come in time. Make sure to stay focused on your studies, and soon you may be working in an exciting new field, bringing relief to others.

Are you thinking about becoming a massage therapist? If so, why? Share your experiences and goals with us in the comment space below.

Help expecting mothers with prenatal massages

Saturday, August 25th, 2012

Help expecting mothers with prenatal massages

Whether you have given birth or are married to someone who has, you understand that pregnancy is no walk in the park. Your experience may have even inspired you to help women through the rewarding, but challenging, process that is carrying a child to term. One field that allows you to do just that is massage therapy.

While the different techniques you can pick up in massage therapy school can have a positive impact on all types of people, pregnant women in particular may benefit from what is known as prenatal massage. If you haven’t heard about it, here are a few things you should know:

What is a prenatal massage?

Carrying a child can do a number on a woman’s body. Since it’s not uncommon for them to experience everything from back pain to sore muscles, prenatal massage exists to resolve some of these issues. According to BabyCenter, a pregnancy and parenting resource, prenatal massage techniques are designed for the pregnant body. During a session, massage therapists who specialize in this area may work to ease sore spots, relax tense muscles and improve circulation in their clients’ bodies. Ultimately, just like with traditional massages, the goal is to make people feel better.

How exactly does it help moms-to-be?

If you think the time you spend in massage therapy schools will lead to a good-paying job and nothing more, you’re in for more than you bargained for. The prenatal massages you give to expecting mothers will make a big difference in their lives. According to the American Pregnancy Association, past studies have shown that women who receive massages while pregnant have experienced a reduction in anxiety and depressive symptoms, while also seeing better labor outcomes. Prenatal massage has even been linked to improved health in newborns.

Other benefits pregnant women may see after receiving a massage include reduced muscle tension, joint and back pain, fewer headaches and better sleep. Any one of these can make the ups and downs of pregnancy all the more manageable.

How do you prepare for this career?

You won’t become a massage therapist who specializes in prenatal massage overnight. Since you’ll be working with women carrying an unborn child, it should come as no surprise that expecting mothers will want to go to somebody they feel is a knowledgeable professional. As a result, the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) recommends you look into advanced training options that can prepare you for the field of prenatal massage.

While massage therapists are expected to be empathetic with good communication skills, those who work with pregnant women may need to be ready for other challenges. The AMTA says that with this particular demographic, there may be times when a session goes longer than expected, or massage therapists have to travel to clients’ homes if they are on bed rest. Conditions could change at any moment, so you need to be flexible.

So, with all this in mind, do you still have an interest in taking massage therapy classes and working toward a career in this field? Let us know in the comment space below.

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