What classes can I expect from a massage therapy program?
It has been recognized that comprehensive massage therapy programs
need to address a multitude of things. Of paramount importance, of course, is the skill set that the massage therapist or bodywork practitioner develops. This ensures that clients receive safe and effective treatments from knowledgeable and well-practiced professionals. This will involve training in the various well-established and medically recognized approaches to massage; those that are based on an understanding of human physiology, as well as psychology and the human condition.
Aspiring massage therapists can look forward to a diverse cross-section of academic and practical applied training to prepare for
In the context of massage therapy, classes in human physiology are much more than just a memorization of the various body systems and the organs that comprise them. Massage therapy courses in physiology will teach students how and why certain targeted areas like connective tissues (fascia), joints, tendons, ligaments, musculature, and skin respond favorably to massage. This removes some of the mystery and brings to bear the hard science behind why these physical components of the human body are targeted for massage, and how targeted massage in these areas can affect overall health and wellness.
With 80 recognized modalities of massage, it may seem overwhelming to consider an education in this vast healing art. The good news is that massage therapy programs are now designed to introduce students to a well-rounded sampling of the many modalities, with a specific focus on those modalities that have been recognized by western medicine to have tangible health benefits. More often than not, this would include Swedish massage, deep tissue massage, and Postural Integration.
Techniques- Within the 80 different modalities of massage there are numerous techniques by which massage therapists apply the approach. These techniques involve integrating the use of all the tools at the disposal of the massage therapist. This means a massage therapy class in technique would prepare students to make use of their elbows, knees, forearms, fingers, and even feet to perform massage. With these various body parts the massage therapist or bodywork professional may knead, roll, push, stretch, apply pressure, or incorporate repetitive sliding, gliding, and even tapping motions to address a target area.