I’m not sure what it was like for you in school, but for me, it was laid out like this:
- Pass state test. Keep it current.
- Get insurance. I think it’s important
- Do continuing education to keep said license
I get out of massage school and my dangerously curious nature leads me to figure out what is going right and what is going wrong in this body of LMTs–not just in my city or state but across the United States. I have a few opinions of what I think could be improved but for the sake of introductions, I will keep this brief.
I discovered the nuances between the major insurance companies–ABMP & AMTA. Did you also know that you don’t have to use those? There are others!! I had no idea for along time. The 2 major insurance companies have changed a lot over the years and I’ve flexed between the 2 based on what I was needing at the time.
Continuing education is important. Naturally, I suggest you look into Barefoot Massage as an option. There are all kinds of politics within the world of continuing education. What should be included? What classifies as massage or energy work etc? Or whether massage strokes can be regulated or branded? I’ve found there are LMTs who just want to clock the hours and move on. And there are others who want to invest in an education. I suppose neither is wrong but you can guess what my preference would be.
Then, there is core education. Few talk about this. But there is not enough regulation or an organization ensuring core education is up to standards. Again, my opinion. I was hiring LMTs out of school and noticed they didn’t always know very basic and important pieces to this work. Things like anatomy beyond large muscle groups and common aches and pains. And other things like the differences between employment and business ownership. There seems to be a glossing over things but a lack of critical thinking and a appetite for more information. I know we can’t win them all over but my hope stays alive for more massage therapists hungry for more than learning the basics.
If there’s one thing I could ask every LMT I know to do, is to get involved locally and nationally with what is happening in OUR industry. COVID-19 has really thrown a wrench in everything but I hope we use this reset as an opportunity to straighten some things out.
One way you can do that, is to get involved with the AFMTE. The Alliance for Massage Therapy Education is doing so much good in our world and they want to hear your voice.
My hope for 2021 is that each one of you find a cause to take up within our industry and learn as much as you can and advocate for the change you want to see!