Some careers just seem too good to be true. It’s hard to imagine that a reasonably short course of study can open so many different doors.
Massage therapy is one of those professions. While many people view the job as a repetitive stream of groaning clients face-down on a table getting their stress worked out, the fact is that the field is incredibly broad and diverse. There are many different opportunities available to people who complete the needed certifications and set out to work.
Here is a look at a few of the places you can go:
It’s not necessary to rent an expensive space, hire a receptionist, and stock up on old magazines for your waiting area. Many massage therapists are letting their clients provide the space for them. They take their rubs on the road by making home visits (and office visits) to their clients.
The success of this field is rooted in hectic schedules. Many people wish they could get a massage every so often, but they simply lack the time to make an appointment, drive across town, and wait in line. So they’re shifting all the burden back to the therapist; the client still makes an appointment, but he or she instead sits at work until the exact time. A therapist comes in with a portable massage chair, gives the client a great session, and the client goes right back to work.
Of course, as the therapist, you are now the one who must drive across town, maintain a schedule, and possibly wait on the client. But the difference is that through your fees, you decide how much you want to be compensated for it. It’s the best of both worlds.
Sports & Exercise Therapy
People today are very attentive to exercise needs, and many play sports to stay in shape. One of the hallmarks of today’s hard-hitting weekend athletes is the soreness and fatigue they develop from hitting it a little too hard. Aging tennis players and arthritic softballers usually seek out some relief from their post-game agony, and massage therapists are often the ones they come to. These athletes can be a big part of your practice and can break up the monotony of your client load. You may also be able to get on staff at a gym and work exclusively with them.
Or you can take it a step further and get involved with a professional sports team. A pro football team of 53 players plus a practice squad (and after training camp, players who are later cut) can provide a very nice workload for a massage therapist who loves the game and wants to spend some time around the players and staff. A little experience with Warren The Worn-Out Weightlifter at your local gym can qualify you for a very nice gig with a local pro franchise.
Tied closely to athletes are medical patients who are in the process of recovering from procedures or injuries. Larger hospitals may be interested in hiring massage therapists to help in their orthopedic or other programs in helping patients get back to normal.
The great part about these jobs is that once again, the power bill is paid by somebody else, but most of all, you get a little taste of the doctor’s job satisfaction. Some therapists get bored seeing the same old clients with the same old aches week in and week out. They would love to watch a patient progress through a recovery from surgery or a medical problem. If that sounds appealing to you, get a resume together for the local hospital.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. If you’ve been considering massage therapy as a career but have balked out of fear of working in a rut, fear not. Massage therapy is a large and diverse field. You’ll find somewhere to thrive.