Massage Therapy has been shown to reduce anxiety levels. Massage therapy is proposed to have a positive impact on the quality of life and immune function through stress mediation. Massage is being used to provide relief from injury, stress, pain, and other acute and chronic conditions that includes an array of manual therapies that manipulate the soft tissues of the body in order to reduce anxiety, tension, stress, and depression. In addition, massage therapy increases circulation, controls pain, and promotes a sense of overall well-being. Touch is the main ingredient of massage therapy, which conveys a sense of caring – an important component in the healing partnership. Encyclopedia of Stress, 2nd Ed; 2007.
Typically, graduates from Massage Therapy Diploma program complete studies in: human anatomy and physiology, musculoskeletal anatomy, kinesiology, pathology, general nutrition, therapeutic exercise, hydrotherapy and thermal therapies, massage theory and techniques, clinical assessment and treatment planning, treatment of various conditions, ethics, research literacy, and business and practice management. (mtaalberta.com). Massages are used to treat after-work out soreness, are linked to pain reduction, increase blood flow, provide lymphatic drainage, and stimulate the immune system. There are a lot of researches that show massage therapy is effective in fighting depression; there was also another research study showing a significant drop in stress hormones and a boost in serotonin and dopamine, the so-called feel-good hormones, after a massage.
As specified under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2016, massage therapists assess soft tissues and joints of the body for treatment and prevention of dysfunction, injury, pain and physical disorders. Massage therapists work in private practice, including group or team practices, hospitals, clinics, extended care facilities, rehabilitation centers and educational institutions.
They are categories under the NOC 3236 or similar titles as:
• Massage therapist (MT)
• Masso kinesitherapist
• Registered massage practitioner
• Registered massage therapist (RMT)
• Thai massage therapist
Main duties of a massage therapists perform some or all of the following duties:
• Assess clients by conducting range of motion and muscle tests and propose treatment plans.
• Explain procedures, risks and benefits to clients
• Administer massage techniques, treating soft tissues and joints of the body through soft tissue manipulation, relaxation techniques, hydrotherapy, trigger point therapy, joint pain and lower grade mobilizations, remedial exercise programs and client self-help programs
• Suggest home care instructions and provide information about techniques for further postural improvement and stretching, strengthening, relaxation and rehabilitative exercises
• Maintain records of treatments given
• May consult with other health care professionals such as physiotherapists, chiropractors, physicians and psychologists when developing treatment plans for clients.
The focus of Advanced Massage Therapy at Canadian Health and Business College is to provide with the students the general background of the 2-year advanced diploma massage therapist with focus on professionalism and evidenced-based-theory and practice about massage with effective assessment and treatment planning and proper intervention of clients undergoing massage therapy.
Each education program is accountable in demonstrating its program design to effectively deliver the content specifications of the guidelines for professional boundaries, standards and scope of practice, professional development program as stipulated in the Massage Therapist Association of Alberta. Under the MTAA, student has the option of becoming a member of the association, provided they must be currently enrolled in a 2,200-hour education program licensed within Alberta and recognized by the MTAA.
This 2-year course (2,200 contact hours) enables students’ transition from relaxation massage to more advanced remedial massage by exploring the physiological effects of their healing touch, principles relevant to work with depth and in various techniques towards the resolution of major soft tissue injury.
Further, students of Canadian Health and Business College must complete 1,100-hours for the first year and 1,200-hours for the second year to be eligible to join the association under student member and to be qualified to become a Registered Massage Therapist and can apply for membership with associations if students will pass the program and completed the required clinical/practice hours.
After successfully completing the first Term of the program, students begin to gain the valuable hands-on experience provided in Clinical Practicum by treating general members of the public both on and off campus. Students will be given the opportunity to gain the benefits of integrating their clinical skills with their practical and academic studies providing care for different groups, organizations, companies and specialized populations within the community under the mentorship and supervision of a Registered Massage Therapist.
All knowledge & skills learned in class are used and applied within the clinic practicum, therefore, one of the evaluation criteria qualifying a student to successfully complete a Clinical Practicum Term Module is the requirement of the successful completion of all in-class courses within the same term. This program is recognized by the Alberta Advanced Education and graduates will be eligible to become a Registered Massage Therapist through the provincial association such as:
• Massage Therapists Association of Alberta (MTAA)
• Natural Health Practitioners of Canada (NHPC)
• Remedial Massage Therapist Association (RMTA)
• Certified Massage Therapist Association (CRMTA)
According to research, anticipated salary of a massage therapist ranges from 62,000 to 82,000. This estimate is based on available employment data at the time. Actual salary will vary on a numerous factor including the province or territory they are employed.
There is a great diversity of future and potential employers for the Massage Therapists such as in areas like Chiropractic clinics, physiotherapy clinics, hospitals, gyms, sports team, health spas, and private practice. After graduation, students can work anywhere in Canada once successfully completed the 2200-hour program and must be registered with the National Health Practitioners of Canada. In some cases, other province has their own regulations that includes enrolling in some extra courses or challenge their provincial examinations.
Putting up your own business in Massage is another option after graduation after meeting all the requirements to become an active member of the association and other required regulating bodies/profession.
• Registered Massage Therapist
• Independent Practitioners/Private Practice
• Spa Massage Therapist
• Clinic Massage Therapist
• Fitness/Sports Massage Therapist
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