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How to become a Massage Therapist

The field of massage therapy has exploded in popularity in recent years. Massage therapy schools are seeing higher rates of admission than ever before, due in part to an increased demand for qualified therapists. In fact, health experts report the use of massage therapy has tripled in the last ten years, which further shows the need for more licensed massage therapists.

Once you’ve decided to embark on a career in massage therapy, the first thing you need to do is find a quality school. Your education is a top priority when entering the field of massage therapy as there are a number of different techniques and aspects of the trade that you’ll need to learn. For example, a massage therapy class will teach you the fundamentals in techniques as varied as Swedish and Deep Tissue Massage, Reiki, Medical Massage and more. In fact, you can attain specialty certification in a number of these specific forms of massage therapy while at the same time learning bits and pieces of each during your time in massage therapy school.

It is also important to decide where you intend to practice, as the qualifications for licensure are different depending on the city and/or state. For example, attending massage therapy school at the Cortiva School in New Jersey may help you become certified in that state, but you may need different credentials for practicing massage therapy in Philadelphia, PA or Phoenix, AZ. The best way to determine the type and length of training you’ll need to pass regional or state certifications is to request the information from the individual school and inquire specifically about the certification process.

The minimum amount of hours required for massage therapy certification can vary from 330 to 1,000, depending on where you live. Additionally, massage therapy schools can span from several months to two years, which is determined by the structure of classes at the school. Many schools center their curriculum on the mainstream specialties as well as the education requirements dictated by the state.

Some areas have no regulation in terms of massage therapy certification, which means you can start your practice whenever you’d like. But to be an effective massage therapist it’s important to get training of some sort so you can be a knowledgeable licensed massage therapist.

Additionally, during the educational process, it is not a bad idea to get some practice in on family and friends. Because you are in the process of trying to master several techniques at one time, it helps to have people you know and trust to practice on. Enlist the help of family members, neighbors, close-friends and co-workers; they will likely jump at the chance for a free massage and the experience you receive from frequent practice will help quite helpful.

Upon graduation from a reputable massage therapy school, many graduates find that there are number of jobs available in the public or private sector. Industry experts predict that job opportunities for licensed massage therapists are expected to grow by more than 30% in the next four years, making the field of massage therapy a steady and lucrative career option.


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