Massage Therapy Classes
You need to understand which Massage Therapy Classes are included in your Massage School Curriculum to choose the Best Massage School for you. Make sure you get the right balance of technique, theory and spirituality that suits your personality and career goals.
Massage therapy classes teach a student the art and science of massage therapy. First and foremost, the massage curriculum will cover topics directly related to massage therapy – for example, theoretical background of massage therapy, different techniques of massage (such as deep tissue massage, sports massage, massage for special needs individuals, etc.), therapeutic value of different types of massage, and client condition evaluation.
In addition to these, subjects like anatomy, physiology, kinesiology and hygiene also make a part of the curriculum of a massage therapy class. Also taught in a massage therapy class are massage therapy ethics and business practices. Here is a brief overview of the subjects a student can expect to learn in the course of a massage therapy class conducted by an accredited massage therapy college.
Anatomy: Under anatomy, a student will learn about the various internal organs and structures in the body with the help of anatomical models, textbooks, photographs and lectures. The student will learn about the muscles and tissues, how they function, and how they respond to the action of massaging.
Physiology: Physiology is known as the study of life; the subject deals with the functioning of the various tissues and organs on the cellular level, and when combined with anatomy and kinesiology, gives the student an in-depth understanding of how the human body functions internally and how it responds to external stimuli of massage therapy.
Kinesiology: Kinesiology is the study of the human body's movement, and the relationship between human body movement and human health. One learns about the various aspects of the movement of shoulders, wrists, torso, hips, elbows, knees and ankles, and how these movements can be optimized so as to cause the least amount of physical stress and injury to these moving parts of the body.
Massage theory and practicals (techniques): Massage theory covers the history of massage – massage therapy is not a new phenomenon; it has been around for thousands of years, being passed on successively from one generation to the next generation. It is absolutely important that a student of massage therapy gets a grip on the theory and "culture" of massage therapy. It is this historical healing tradition that adds to the "perceived value" of massage and helps you charge more for your services. While the historical and spiritual side may sound like mumbo-jumbo to you, it is what sets massage apart from being just a rubdown.
In massage practicals, a student will learn about the different techniques to administer massage therapy – how he should use his hands, fingers, elbow, and even his feet in order to provide therapeutic benefits to a client. The various massage techniques that a student can expect to learn are, for example, deep tissue massage, Swedish massage, Shiatsu, chair massage, sports massage, etc. Make sure you research your short list of schools thoroughly to make sure the type of massage you are interested in is covered. Also, make sure you get adequate exposure to different types of massage, even if you don't plan on practicing all of the techniques.
Client evaluation and treatment: The massage class also coaches a student on how to evaluate a client's condition from whatever little information the client passes on to him. After the student evaluates the client's conditions (hearing him and then examining him) and gets his finger on the pulse of the client's problem, he is taught on how to develop a suitable plan of treatment.
Ethics: A quality massage therapy class will always prepare and instruct a student against taking undue advantage of his client. In the practice of massage, the client reveals his entire body to the practitioner and also informs him about his vulnerabilities. A massage practitioner should never take advantage of anything he sees or hears, and a quality massage therapy class can help him build a strong foundation of work ethics.
Business: Most students take up a massage therapy class because they want to set up their own private massage practice after they graduate. They are, therefore, also coached on the business aspect of the massage therapy practice. Some massage therapy schools have mentorship programs and some arrange for their students to train on people with physiological conditions, albeit under the supervision of experts. Apart from exposure to the real world massage market, the massage school also teaches the students how to set up a massage business – right from making a business plan to obtaining finances, and then right down to running the show.
Recently schools have been adding nutrition as a massage therapy class because with our fast-paced lifestyles and unhealthy eating habits, food has begun to affect our constitution and our metabolism. A sound understanding of nutrition will help you offer complimentary services as part of your wellness massage practice.
Finally, a student will also learn about the limitations of massage therapy – he will then realize that massage is not the be-all and the end-all treatment for any type of illness, but when used in conjunction with other therapeutic techniques and modern medicine can go a long way in enhancing the overall health of human beings.
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