Massage therapy school can be challenging, but proactively preparing for the challenges ahead will make the school much more straightforward and fun.
An essential factor to note is that a prerequisite of obtaining a massage therapy license is a high school diploma or GED.
First and foremost, all students should make an effort to shadow a massage therapist for a few days before beginning school. Job shadowing will create a context for massage therapy school. After completing a few days following a massage therapist, students will identify what is essential in class, what employers need students to know, and most importantly, if massage therapy is the correct fit for them.
Students should plan for a six-month-long program by preparing care for children if applicable and ensuring they have a reliable mode of transportation to and from school.
In preparing for massage therapy school, students should aim to become familiar with anatomy and physiology. These subjects cover the structure and function of the human body, focusing primarily on the musculoskeletal system.
In that same vein, massage therapy has many specializations.
- Sports massage
- Medical massage
- Prenatal / pregnancy massage
- Lymphatic massage
- Trigger point therapy
Even though some of these are covered in school, becoming familiar and finding out which one you like might help students choose a more straightforward career path.
To learn more about a massage therapist career, the knowledge, skills, abilities, personality, technology, and education requirements, visit My Next Move.
Another good tip is to become familiar with some of the tools needed during training, like computers, Microsoft Excel, and Word.
It is also a good idea to become familiar with the governing body for massage therapy in the state of Florida by visiting their website.
Many organizations and associations provide resources helpful during school and beyond. An excellent example of this is the American Massage Therapy Association which offers free membership to students. This free membership provides educational tools, networking and community, career guidance, member discounts, and publications.
Other organizations to be aware of are the American massage therapy association - Florida Chapter, the Florida State Massage Therapy Association, and the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards.
In researching massage therapy schools, be sure to find out if the school is accredited, the program's estimated cost, and if financial aid is available.
Other essential factors to consider are:
- What massage therapy programs are available when they begin and end, and at what hours do the classes and clinics take place.
- Find out the school's reported job placement rates for graduates.
- Conduct research on the school's website and social media pages to see what others say about the school.
- Speak with a schools' admission staff and faculty in person and arrange to take a tour.