How to decide if becoming a Massage Therapist is for you?

If you have been considering a career as a massage therapist, then there are several things you will want to consider when deciding if becoming one is for you.  Massage Therapy is a wonderful career choice.  The demands of a Massage Therapist are not for everyone.

When considering a career as a licensed massage therapist, you may want to ask yourself the following questions and consider carefully the answers.  Take out a piece of paper and write out your answers to the following questions.  Once you have done that you will want to research the requirements to become a Massage Therapist in your state.

  • Am I comfortable being touched and am I willing to touch others?
  • While learning how to perform massage on another individual am I willing to disrobe in a classroom setting and only be covered by a sheet or blanket? 
  • Am I comfortable with a male student practicing their massage techniques on me?
  • Am I comfortable with a female student practicing their massage techniques on me?
  • Have I ever received a professional massage from a licensed massage therapist and if not; am I willing to receive one?
  • Why do I want to be a Massage Therapist?

It may seem only logical that a person has experienced a massage before they would ever consider the possibility of becoming a professional in the field.  The truth is many students enroll in school every year and have never received a massage in their life.  It is important to know that you are comfortable being touched before you consider touching others.  The best way to find out for sure how you feel about receiving a massage is to receive one from a licensed professional therapist in your community

Although it has been more than ten years since its publication this guide still provides a sound introduction into the career of massage therapy.  For current information on licensure and establishment codes in your community it would be best to consult your state massage therapy board and county or city for zoning codes.  For the "what it will be like" and "what it will take" to become a therapist this book provides an excellent window into massage therapy as a career.

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Why Do I Want to Be A Massage Therapist? 

Why do I want to be a Massage Therapist?  This is an important question to be able to articulate.  If you do not have an answer today, you will want to consider this further before applying to schools.  Massage Therapy generally requires a license, although not every state in the union requires licensure at this time.  If the state you live in does require licensure then there will be some form of examination required in order to become licensed.  Different states have different requirements for becoming a licensed massage therapist. 

If you are not a native English speaker than taking course work form an English speaking instructor may be a challenge.  Many states have made accommodations for Spanish speaking individuals.  Some massage schools have Spanish speaking instructors.  It is important that you inquire about licensing requirements and examination requirements before you sign an enrollment contract with any school.

If you are a male considering a career as a massage therapist it is important for you to know why you want to be a massage therapist.  There are many male therapists in the field of massage therapy and every one of them will tell you that it is more challenging for a male to be successful.  It is vital to be able to clearly answer for yourself the question “Why do I want to be a Massage Therapist”?

One of the best things to do while considering the possibility that a career in massage therapy is to schedule an appointment with a massage therapist in your community.  Let them know at the beginning of the appointment that you are interested in becoming a massage therapist and be prepared to ask them the following questions.  If you are male schedule an appointment with a male therapist to find out firsthand what it is like for male therapists in your community. 

  • What training did you have to take to be a massage therapist in this community?
  • How long did you have to stay in school?
  • What did you like best about your program or not like about the school or the training offered at the school you went to?
  • How much do you make an hour?
  • Are you happy that you became a massage therapist?
  • Did you have to take a licensure examination?
  • Was it difficult for you to pass the examination if yes, ask if the school they went to prepares them to take the examination?

If you are a female and you are not sure you feel comfortable having a male give you a massage, it would be highly beneficial if you received a massage from a professional licensed male therapist before you enroll in school.  It will be a part of your training to practice your massage skills and most schools today have a balanced enrollment of male and female students.  Massage training is more challenging than many people realize, the more research you do the better prepared you will be to be successful upon graduation. 

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