Therapeutic massage therapy is one of the many branches of the healing arts. A practitioner of massage therapy uses the hands to massage the body into deep relaxation allowing the release of tension. This also stimulates blood circulation, soothes sore muscles and eases injuries. Those seeking a career in this healing art must first become certified through an accredited program to become licensed in their state of practice. After that, they must take massage continuing education classes to retain their license.
As regulations and guidelines on massage therapy differ from state to state, massage continuing education classes can allow practitioners to stay informed of these regulations as well as any new changes in state and local guidelines that may affect their practice. Although there is a national license that can be obtained for massage therapists, a certain numbers of massage continuing education hours must still be documented with the state in which the therapist practices. Local ordinances, if any, will also need to be followed in order for a massage therapist to practice legally.
The following are examples of points of study that one may find in massage continuing education classes:
- Boundary training: developing a scope of practice that sets boundaries between the healer and the patient
- Ethics: managing clinical dilemmas, reporting abuse, insurance billing
- Licensing: state and local regulations needs
- Ergonomics: proper techniques and proper equipment
- Shoulder rehabilitation: working with shoulder injuries, sports medicine/massage
- Upper body anatomy: recognizing major muscle groups and structure, tendons and range of movement
Massage continuing education classes are credited in hours and reported to the state board by the accredited program attended by the massage therapist. This make sures that the practitioner is in keeping with the rules and regulations set forth in their state of practice. A massage therapist who is not in keeping with the needs of their state will have their license to practice terminated.
Massage continuing education classes can be found online and are provided through many accredited and reputable schools and organizations. Online courses provide opportunities for those who practice massage therapy to maintain their licenses with the state board of their residence without having to log their hours in a traditional classroom setting. As the pace of online classes are set by the student, this can be a choice option for the busy professional who wishes to honor licensing needs without losing time from an already full schedule. Many states also offer the ability to renew a massage therapy license online, allowing the immediate recognition of the therapist’s right to practice.