If you think carving a career in massage therapy is as easy as knowing how to knead and press, you are wrong. Because of the increasing popularity of these clinics, the government has started to regulate the practice. Now, massage therapists need to get some kind of license in order to work. This, of course, is not true for all states. Laws on the industry are still not being enforced all over the country. This means that each state will have a different take on how the practice should be done.
Here are some of the things you may want to consider when starting out a career in massage therapy.
1. Know the massage that you want to do
One of the main considerations that you have to look into before you start your massage therapy career is what massage to specialize in. Like the medical field, massage therapists now have specializations. Each will be identified with a particular field. This is brought on by the kind of training that they will take before they become full-pledged massage therapists. The best way to do this is to research on the different kinds of massages and see what you are most comfortable doing.
There are a lot of considerations when making this choice. One of the factors that may affect their decisions is what kind of clinical setting they want to work in. Working in spas and commercial massage clinics will only require you to be adept at massages that seek to relax the muscles.
This is, of course, easier to study and much easier to do compared to massages that are much more technical in nature, which is usually done in the clinical setting. However, the advantage with more technical and scientific massage strokes is higher pay and of course more professionalized.
2. Physical problems
Massage therapy involves a lot of physical work. Every day, you will be servicing the clients with a hard or soft massage as well as helping them lie back in the massage table and also in disrobing. It is a very hard job and can be physically taxing. Before you get into a career in massage therapy, make sure that you can take on the job and deal with its physical requirements.
3. Time to study
Because of the way the industry has been regulated by the state, becoming a massage therapist will involve first a lot of years of study. Some states, in fact, require therapists to have at least three years in specialization. If you need to earn money right away and don’t have time to study first, this is not the career for you. You will be better off with jobs that do not really require a training certificate or a diploma.
4. Good with people
Another thing to consider when you want to have a career in massage therapy is communication with people. Remember that you will mostly be earning your money from the tips and not actually in the salary that the clinic gives you. For you to get big tips, you also need to be sociable and to communicative with people. Clients love therapists who talk to them and those who listen to their problems. If you are a little bit anti-social, this is not the career for you.