Massage Therapist Career Plan

Massage therapy is increasingly respected as a health profession. Interested in becoming a massage therapist? It doesn’t take as many years of schooling as many other health professions, but you’ll still need to make yourself competitive at different points along the way. Here are some tips to help you get started.

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  1. Use your high school years to get a solid background in both science and communications. Take advantage of extra-curricular activities. You can develop poise, public speaking ability, and even business knowledge – all of which can help you find clients when you’ve completed your education.

  2. Meanwhile, make sure you’re in good condition physically. You don’t have to be an athlete, but you do need a certain amount of strength and flexibility.
    You may also want to pursue CPR certification at this stage.

  3. Familiarize yourself with your state board and locate an acceptable program – i.e. one that’s state approved or nationally accredited. Many respected programs are accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA). It’s not the only path – but realize that there are a lot of schools in operation that won’t prepare you for certification or licensure, and do your research.

  4. Fulfill pre-admission requirements. You might, for example, need a note from your doctor.

  5. Complete classwork and practice hours.

  6. You might want to become a student member of the American Massage Therapy Association. One of the perks of AMTA membership is that you can participate in a mentoring program.

  7. Fulfill licensing or certification requirements.

  8. Look for a position. You might try spas, hotels, or physical therapy offices. It’s often necessary to take a part-time position when you’re starting out. As you build a client base, though, you’ll find your services more in demand. Many massage therapists are in business for themselves.

Personality Traits: Massage therapists are people-oriented, with good communication skills and a reassuring manner.