The Massage Industry is Booming: Here’s Why

The idea that you can choose to embark on a new career at any point in your life, and completely reinvent what you do for a living, is one of the most exciting prospects out there. Most of us, at some point in our lives, have been in a position where we didn’t love our current job. And although making a switch can be scary, the rewards are often worth it.

When you think about moving to a new career and a new lifestyle, what industry comes to mind? For an increasing number of people, massage therapy is high on the list. It’s a dynamic career, you have the opportunity to help people every day, and there’s no limit to how successful you can be.

There’s also the fact that the massage therapy industry is booming. It’s constantly popping up on lists of the “hottest” careers, and the opportunities seem virtually boundless. Why is this? Are there specific reasons why the massage industry is booming?

Besides being an incredibly rewarding career for those who dedicate themselves, there are a few concrete reasons for the sharp increase in massage therapy students and schools. One is that people are generally more concerned about wellness these days, and massage therapy is a wonderful addition to any wellness plan. Not only does it have great physical benefits (circulation, detoxification, stress reduction, to name a few); it also has amazing psychological and even emotional effects. People who regularly go for massage therapy have been proven to be more relaxed, more peaceful, and more mentally clear.

The other reason is that people are busier and more stressed than ever. The pressures of work, family, and other important obligations – along with the constant stream of information today – makes it all the more important for people to wind down and take time for themselves.

Basically, people are busier and more stressed – and the benefits of massage therapy are becoming clearer to people as a result. This trend doesn’t appear to be changing anytime soon, and the opportunities for a career in massage therapy are growing every day.

This is an interesting situation for people who are interested in becoming therapists. It means that now more than ever, it’s important to choose the right massage therapy school and the right educational program. There are plenty of reputable schools out there who focus on giving students a comprehensive knowledge – not only of massage therapy techniques, but the business side of things as well. On the other hand, there are schools out there that are more concerned about signing you up and collecting tuition than they are about preparing you for a successful transition into the world of professional massage therapy.

How do you find the right school? Talking to past students, or at least reading their reviews online, is a great place to start. If you can find thriving massage therapists in your community who attended a given school – and can vouch for the program – you’ll be on the right track to becoming the next successful practitioner in this exciting field!

What are the Most Popular Types of Massage?

If you’ve been to a massage therapy studio or “spa” lately, you’ve probably noticed there’s more than one type of massage on the menu. That’s one of the great things about massage therapy, both from the perspective of the patient and the practitioner. There’s always something new to learn, and there is no end to the ways in which different massage techniques can be blended and used for therapeutic purposes.

The drawback is that people are sometimes confused by the different types of massage therapy being offered, whether they’re going for a treatment or thinking about becoming a practitioner. Let’s take a look at three of the most popular types of massage, and what they bring to the table.

1. Swedish massage

Swedish massage is the most popular type of massage the world over – in so small part because many people also consider it to be the most pleasurable. Relaxation is the main objective of most Swedish massage work, and practitioners aim for a deep state of relaxation in the patient. Long, firm and gliding movements are used to massage the muscles in the direction of the heart, in order to facilitate better circulation and the elimination of toxins. Swedish massage is often a full-body treatment, but it’s also common to see treatments that focus on certain areas, such as the back or shoulders.

2. Hot stone massage

During hot stone massage, smooth stones are heated in water and then placed on strategic points along the patient’s body. This source of heat provides deep relaxation of the muscle tissues. It’s pleasurable and therapeutic in its own right, but it also opens the way for the therapist to be more effective with other massage techniques. Usually the therapist will begin by massaging the patient with a warm stone in hand, replacing it when cold. At one or more points during the treatment, stones may be left along the spine or torso in order to more deeply relax certain areas.

3. Prenatal massage

You might not have expected this one to make the list, but the reality is that prenatal massage is a very distinct form of massage therapy – and it’s in very high demand. The ability to safely and effectively treat pregnant women is a huge advantage for any practitioner, and the treatment itself can be highly beneficial to expecting mothers. Depending on how far long the woman may be, and her individual comfort levels, side positions with special cushions may be used to relieve pressure and tension during the treatment. The massage itself focuses on relieving common pains and symptoms associated with pregnancy, including back aches and leg cramps, amongst others.

How to learn the right techniques

If you’ve been curious about a possible career in massage therapy, it’s important to find a reputable school that gives you a complete repertoire of therapeutic options, including (but not limited to) the three types of massage mentioned above. Look for a school that offers comprehensive training in a whole array of therapies, as well as a solid grounding in the real-world business of being a professional massage therapist. Your patients will feel the difference!

What’s the Difference Between “Clinical” and “Spa” Massage?

Massages can be a great way to relax, relieve stress, and loosen up those muscles. These are common reasons for people to head to their neighborhood spa for a massage. At the same time, there are growing numbers of people who seek massage therapy as part of a clinical or overall wellness treatment. Such practitioners usually work in more clinical settings, such as a physical therapy office or chiropractor’s office.

So what’s the difference between clinical and spa massages? If you’re interested in a career in massage therapy, it’s important to be able to answer these questions clearly and accurately.

1. Purpose

In general, the purpose of spa massage therapy is to satisfy the client. While the same types of massage may be implemented as in a clinical setting, extra steps may be taken in a spa setting to provide a relaxing and peaceful environment, ensuring a positive and pleasurable experience. In the case of clinical massage therapy, the main focus is on functional outcomes with measurable results. Sessions are likely shorter but more frequent — with measurable treatment goals in mind.

2. Training and credentials

Performing massage in a spa versus a clinical setting will often require different levels of training. General massage education usually includes around 500 hours of training, which will allow you to work in a spa setting but not as a clinical massage therapist. In most clinical settings, additional specialized training and credentials are required. This can include anything from courses in kinesiology or physical therapy to continuing education in nursing. Before getting into a massage therapy school or course, it’s important to know exactly what you will learn and what kind of professional settings your certification will qualify you for.

3. Patients

Due to the differing purposes and techniques of relaxation massages and clinical massages, you are likely to interact with patients in different ways in each of the two settings. While in a spa it is not uncommon for a client to book a massage, come in once and not return, a clinical setting often generates patients that come to see you on a regular, consistent basis. In either case, one of the benefits of being a massage therapists is the chance to develop a relationship with patients and be able to see their progress over time.

Choosing the Best Massage Therapy School

If you’re interested in massage therapy school but don’t know where to start, there are a number of factors to consider. For starters, in the state of New Jersey be sure to be choose a school that is recognized and accredited by the New Jersey Department of Education and also the National Certification Board of Therapeutic Massage and Bodyworkers (“NCBTMB.”)

In looking at different options near you, collect information about requirements, time commitment, cost, and duration. Also consider your overall goals for a career in massage therapy, as some schools and programs may be more specialized than others. Finally, schedule a visit, attend an orientation, or meet with current students to get a first-hand glimpse at the program. Taking the time to conduct your research will make it much more likely that you have an exceptional learning experience — and a better beginning to your career in the growing field of massage therapy!

April Appointments Available With Our Awesome Student Massage Therapists!

Saturday and Sunday, April 1st & 2nd Student Clinic Massage Appointments Available

$30 for a one hour massage or $40 for ninety-minute massage.
No additional charge for deep tissue massage by our students.
Our Awesome Student Massage Therapists will help you feel wonderful.

Appointments are available:

  • Saturday & Sunday, April 1 & 2
  • Thursday, April 6th
  • Saturday & Sunday, April 8 & 9
  • Saturday & Sunday, April 29 & 30

Call 732-608-7781 to make your appointment.