The high cost of traditional medicine and the potential of side effects have caused many people to turn toward holistic health care options such as massage therapy careers to provide natural healthcare options.
Even insurance companies are quickly recognizing the benefit of natural healthcare and now pay for services such as massage therapy, acupressure and acupuncture, and hydrotherapy.
Physical therapy is now used routinely as a follow up to speed recovery from serious illness and surgery. Pain management is more often used today than the grocery list of addictive and possibly harmful medications used long-term in the past.
With so many career fields being impacted by outsourcing, off shore contracts, and downsizing, it is a relief to learn that there are careers that are growing in demand in the United States and Canada. According to the United States Department of Labor, the number of massage therapists is expected to increase between 21% and 35% in the next few years. Even today, there is more demand for therapists than there are trained professionals available.
There are very few career choices that can provide the combination of benefits that entering a professional massage therapy school can include. Most lucrative careers require a four-year college degree, but massage therapy is a field you can enter as a licensed professional with only two years or less of advanced education. Some programs that prepare a person to successfully sit for National Board exams offer intensive, fast-paced study programs of as little as nine months. This means that the educational expenses will not leave you deep in debt when you begin earning with your new career choice. Also the personal satisfaction obtained while working in the field of natural heath care is second to none.
With your professional massage therapy training, you’ll learn how to help clients feel better. You will be able to relieve pain from injury or surgery, helping clients heal more rapidly. Massage therapy lowers blood pressure, increases circulation, and helps the human body’s natural immune response fight disease and illness more effectively. Your clients will enjoy a sense of well-being and lower levels of stress. Tight muscles and connective tissues can once again become flexible and mobility can be increased. Professional and amateur sport enthusiasts will come to you to help them prevent injury and increase their sports abilities.
The workplaces that are open to the professional massage therapist are exciting and varied. You can open your own massage therapy clinic if you choose. Massage therapy professionals are needed at resorts, spas, on board cruise ships, at sports centers and gyms, in hospitals and doctor’s offices, in rehabilitation facilities, and many other great places to work.
Swedish massage is the most common massage therapy technique. By applying pressure in long strokes and kneading motions on the layers of muscles, along with movement of the joints, this therapeutic technique will provide relaxation, better blood flow, increased motion range, and release of muscle tension.
Let’s look at a few of the techniques you can learn if you select professional massage therapy as your career path:
Myofascial massage therapy involves working the muscles and fascia to relieve pain in the musculoskeletal system and rebalance the body by tension release. This technique involves light and moderate pressure to cause muscles to lengthen, and stretching stokes to release muscle tension. This type of therapy is becoming more and more popular as more people experience the exceptional results.
Deep tissue massage is used to alleviate chronic tension in the body through slow pressure strokes and use of the fingers to apply deep pressure on areas of muscle contraction. Focusing on the deeper muscle layers, this technique is often used to relieve pain due to tendon or fascia problems as well as muscle spasms.
Another technique popular designed to relieve the pain of muscle spasms is trigger point therapy. Using concentrated pressure on specific trigger points, the irritated muscles and associated pain can be relieved quickly. While the treatment may actually be uncomfortable during the application, the results of pain relief over time are proven.
Hot stone therapy is often used in conjunction with other massage techniques to allow application of heat to deeply penetrate the muscles and relax them prior to deeper body work. By relaxing the client before application of deep tissue massage or trigger point therapy, the discomfort of applied pressure can be greatly reduced.
These are just a few of the many massage modalities and techniques available. Massage therapy options are often used for women’s health issues during pregnancy, after childbirth, post-mastectomy, and to help them through emotional, spiritual, or physically challenging times. Ancient techniques include Shiatsu massage and many others. Sports massage is a very lucrative and popular area of massage therapy information specialization.
As you can see, the door is open to anyone who would like to enter this exciting career field. With the choices available and areas of specialization so enormous, there is clearly a place for you in the satisfying world of natural health care through learning professional massage therapy.