We live in an age where more and more people work at computers – and while this has many advantages, fitness is generally not one of them. Working at a desk for eight hours a day can take a physical toll, and people often have to work harder during their private time in order to stay fit and healthy. There are also unique physical injuries that can occur due to office work – back pain and carpal tunnel syndrome are two common examples.
Of course, people who have more physical jobs run the risk of other types of injuries. In general, though, a lot of people enjoy working more physical jobs, as it keeps them active and healthy throughout the day.
So what about massage therapy? There are many great advantages to this career, but is fitness one of them?
The answer is certainly ‘yes’ – delivering massage therapy treatments for hours every day will definitely help many aspects of your physical fitness. That said, it doesn’t provide all of the exercise you need. Because the job of massage therapy is physically demanding, professionals in the field need to stay on top of their fitness and maintain good physical conditioning in order to perform at the top of their game.
Here are some areas that massage therapists, or prospective therapists, should think about when it comes to massage therapy.
- Flexibility, strength, and tone of muscles
- Strong and balanced feet
- Healthy, strong and flexible hands and wrists
- Consistent and deep breathing in order to stay oxygenated
- Good cardiovascular fitness for stamina and consistency during longer treatments
When you think about the rigors of delivering several 60-minute treatments in a day, you can imagine the soreness and fatigue that can potentially develop. Strength-training and cardiovascular exercises are vital for massage therapy professionals, as they keep the product (i.e. massage therapy treatments) strong and consistent for each client.
For many people, an added benefit of working in massage therapy is the overall focus on fitness and wellness. Many therapists who thrive in the field feel that it drives them to stay healthy and make better lifestyle decisions on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis.
Learning massage therapy the right way
One of the signs of a top-notch massage therapy school is that students are given a comprehensive set of skills to help them succeed in the industry. Mastering all of the key elements of massage therapy treatment is obviously a top priority, but there are other areas that need to be addressed – such as the business administration side of being a massage therapist, and self-care practices that keep therapists healthy and productive. Physical fitness is a huge part of that, and any reputable massage therapy school will give you the practical insights and training you need to maintain peak fitness over the long-term. When a massage therapist feels healthy and strong, the quality of treatment is elevated. That means more clients, a better reputation, and more long-term success! Putting together the total package is what good massage therapy training is all about.