Massage therapy can be a great career for someone who wants a meaningful job that involves working closely with others and helping them.
It can function as a complementary treatment in a medical setting, or you could work in a spa, a fitness center, or in a variety of other settings.
Here are some tips for becoming a massage therapist:
Get Your Education
The credentials that you need will vary depending on where you practice, but in most states, you will need to complete a certain amount of training, pass a licensing exam, and participate in continuing education.
Even if you live or plan to work in a place where this is not a requirement, formal training will make you better at what you do.
You can attend classes at an accredited massage school. While a bachelor’s or associate’s degree is generally not required, you could study anatomy or a similar subject to enhance your massage training.
Organize Your Finances
Making sure that you have enough money to pay for your education and other expenses is important. You need to create a budget.
There are apps that can help you with tracking your spending and budgeting, even letting you know when you’re about to go over budget.
You may also want to decide whether to get a student credit card.
This can be useful if you run into any unexpected expenses and can also help you start to build a credit history.
You can review a student guide that will help you decide what the best credit card is for you.
If you later decide to work independently as a massage therapist, having developed these money management skills will help you.
Choose Your Work Environment and Specialty
One exciting element of being a massage therapist is the variety of environments that you might work in.
Your choices range from working in your own or clients’ homes to working in hospitals, resorts, on cruise ships, or even for a sports team.
In addition, you may want to specialize in a particular area.
You could specialize in pregnancy or post-natal massage or in a particular method, such as Swedish, Thai, or deep tissue.
Develop Other Skills
Physical strength and knowing the techniques of the method you’ve chosen are important, but you’ll need other skills to succeed as well.
You need to be a good communicator. This can be especially true since people may come to you in pain and not be especially great at conveying to you exactly where that pain is.
They may also ask for things such as a hard or soft massage without much clarity about what they mean by those terms, and it will be up to you to decide what your client wants and needs are based on these and other cues.
In conclusion, becoming a massage therapist can be a fulfilling and rewarding career. However, it requires dedication, education, and skill development.
Completing a massage therapy program, obtaining proper licensing, and continuing education will provide the foundation for success.
Additionally, developing money management skills, choosing a specialty, and honing communication skills are crucial.
With these tips in mind, anyone interested in becoming a massage therapist can embark on this career path with confidence.