3 Powerful Marketing Tools to Keep Massage Business Strong - by admin@mcb on March 31 2015

3 Powerful Marketing Tools to Keep Massage Business Strong

In order to grow and improve your massage therapy business, it is vital to find innovative ways to market your services. You need to ensure that you stand out from the crowd and offer prospective clients something different. There are many great ways to market your massage therapy business, including:

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    Referral programs. Word of mouth is often the best way to spread awareness of your business. Create an innovative program that encourages current clients to refer your practice to friends and family members. Consider offering a discount after a set number of referrals or a credit toward a session upgrade.

  • Gifts with purchase. Everyone likes a free gift, right? Regular promotions that include a gift with purchase may be just what you need to get new clients through the door. Select a high quality gift that is of value to your clients.
  • Focusing on a niche market. Specializing in a niche market is a great way to market your individual massage skills. For example, a practitioner that focuses on prenatal massage can market the business via moms’ groups, doctors’ offices, and at events designed exclusively for the expectant mother.

If you’re in search of more ways to improve your massage therapy business, visit us online at the Institute of Somatic Therapy. We can help you discover innovative new ways to grow your business.

Marketing Your Massage to Office Workers - by admin@mcb on March 30 2015

Marketing Your Massage to Office Workers

Working in an office can be hard on a body. Days spent sitting, working at a desk, and using a computer can place strain on an individual’s neck, back, shoulders, and legs. One great way to revive a tired body after a day at the office is a massage therapy session. Marketing the benefits of massage specifically to office workers is an excellent way to grow your business and reach prospective customers.

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Targeting your marketing efforts toward individuals who work in an office allows you to educate on the specific benefits of massage therapy. Poor posture is a primary cause of many painful injuries and is only heightened when an individual spends a majority of the day sitting at a desk. Postural imbalance can be solved by regular massage therapy and paying attention to the specific body parts affected by poor posture. Carpal tunnel is another common injury of office workers and can also be relieved by massage therapy. If you are interested in expanding your practice to meet the specific needs of office workers you should consider enrolling in online courses for massage therapy that are designed to help these specific injuries.

The Institute of Somatic Therapy offers online courses for massage therapy that can help to grow your practice. Visit us online to learn more about the courses we offer and our commitment to the massage therapy industry.

5 Tips for Helping Emotional Clients Through a Massage - by admin@mcb on March 26 2015

5 Tips for Helping Emotional Clients Through a Massage

One thing we frequently encounter in massage therapy is clients who have emotional reaction to their massage. Feelings of relaxation, release, and gratitude often flood over them. However, some clients become increasingly emotional and it may be difficult at times to help them manage these feelings. Some of the most effective ways of helping emotional massage clients include:

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    Paying attention. It is important to pay attention to the client during the massage therapy session. If something elicits an emotional response, be aware of the changes in your client and stay open to communication.

  • Listening. Listen when a client wants to share an emotional memory or thought with you during the massage therapy session. Many times there is no need to respond and you can focus on listening while providing the much-needed treatment.
  • Making changes as necessary. If an emotional response gets in the way of your current massage plan, be willing to make changes. Communicate these changes with your client to make sure the therapy is beneficial.
  • Helping when needed. At times, an emotional response may turn into something more. If the response escalates into a panic or anxiety attack take the steps necessary to help your client remain calm.
  • Offering treatment recommendations. As the massage professional it is your responsibility to offer treatment recommendations to an emotional client. Suggest other treatments if you feel they would benefit your client.

If you’d like to learn more about helping an emotional client consider seeking out specific continuing education for massage therapy. A course designed to help the therapist properly respond to clients may be just what you are searching for. The Institute of Somatic Therapy offers continuing education for massage therapy courses. Visit us online today to learn more about the courses we offer.

Take This Quiz From AMTA to Help You Determine What Massage Path Works for You - by admin@mcb on March 23 2015

Take This Quiz From AMTA to Help You Determine What Massage Path Works for You

The massage therapy industry offers massage professionals a wide variety of paths to take when crafting a practice and a career. Sometimes it can be hard to know which area of massage therapy you should focus on. What should you specialize in? What work setting is best for you? The American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) has a helpful online assessment that can assist you discover which work settings and specialties may be best for you.

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AMTA’s assessment asks questions about specific work settings including spa/salon, medical and health care, self-employed, and sports and fitness. The questions ask you to evaluate your interests, preferences, and work styles. When completing this assessment it is important to avoid overanalyzing any one question or answer. Simply read the question and answer using your best instincts. The results you receive are intended to guide you as you make career decisions and may help you discover a need for additional continuing education for massage therapy. Learning more is always a great first step to evolving your practice and your career.

At the Institute of Somatic Therapy we pride ourselves on offering continuing education for massage therapy courses. Our team is committed to developing and administering courses that help massage therapists grow and enhance their practices.

Keep Your Massage Business Booming With Great Client Contact - by admin@mcb on March 20 2015

Keep Your Massage Business Booming With Great Client Contact

Many massage therapy practices are fully invested in creating the largest email list or working to boost their number of followers on social media. Although these are both great ways to spread the message about your practice they can’t convert contacts into clients on their own. The only way to convert contacts into clients is by strategically targeting your message and the ways in which you interact online.

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A proven way to improve your massage therapy business and attract new clients is to target your messaging in ways that encourage action. Your email list, social media contacts, and website should all encourage prospective clients to take action. You want to draw them in and entice them to book a service. One of the most effective ways of doing this is to offer information or knowledge to your clients. You should:

  • Be specific. Make sure the information or knowledge you’re offering to prospective clients is specific and targeted toward a determined segment of the population. For example, you could offer a link to an article on the benefits of prenatal massage or a report on the best types of massage for sports injuries.
  • Assume authority. Prospective clients are looking for authority from your content. Make sure to deliver. Before you create targeted links to reports, articles, or white papers make sure they are thorough, well researched, and deliver authority on relevant massage therapy topics.
  • Deliver value. Think about how your content can be used to help your clients better their lives, and your client contact will instantly improve.  For example, after an appointment, you can send a client a follow-up email with a link to an article guiding them through some self-care they can do between massage therapy sessions, or you can create a blog giving tips for general healthy living.

If you’re looking for more ways to improve your massage therapy business, consider enrolling in an online course from Institute of Somatic Therapy.

Hip Pain? Think TFL. - by admin@mcb on March 17 2015

Hip Pain? Think TFL.

The tensor fasciae latae muscle (alternate spelling “tensor fascia lata”), which acts as a flexor and abductor of the thigh, is often involved with unexplained hip pain.

Photo by Shutterstock
Photo by Shutterstock

Originating at the iliac crest and inserting on the tibia (by way of the iliotibial tract), its primary function, in a normal gait, helps to stabilize the pelvis when standing, and control hip flexion while walking.

Signs and Symptoms

Pain in the TFL is often mistaken for bursitis. People who have active trigger points in the TFL will complain of pain in the hip joint, in the greater trochanter region, and possibly extending down the thigh all the way to the knee. Prolonged sitting will exacerbate their pain, and they may also find it uncomfortable to walk at a rapid pace.

People with Morton foot structure are likely to have trigger points in the tensor fasciae latae muscle. They may also exhibit a forward tilt of the pelvis, and appear to have a shorter limb on the affected side. Walking with a slight flexion in the hip is a visual sign of TFL trigger points. A weak rectus femoris muscle and/or tight psoas and iliacus muscles will also contribute to TFL pain.

Your massage therapy clients who have trigger points in the TFL are also likely to have associated trigger points in other muscles, including the gluteus minimus, rectus femoris, iliopsoas, or sartorius. Trigger points in the anterior gluteus minimus must be eliminated before the TFL will be able to reach its full length. You will want to work all of these muscles in order for your client to get maximum results from your therapy.

Lifestyle Modifications

People who have this condition and who must sit at an office chair for prolonged periods should adjust the chair so that the seat slopes downward, or place some padding at the back of the seat so that hip flexion can be increased. Leaning into a back rest that is tilted backward can help as well.

Any stride that involves  a forward leaning flexion at the hip (such as uphill) should be avoided. Walking on a sloped, uneven surface will also create further tension in the muscle.

For sleeping positions, people with TFL restrictions should sleep on the non-affected side with the affected leg supported with a pillow and extended between 90 – 180 degrees.

Encourage your client to supplement your work with hip flexibility stretches and strengthening of supporting muscles.

To learn more about Morton’s Foot Structure or alleviating hip pain in your clients, Institute of Somatic Therapy  recommends any of the following massage therapy continuing education courses:
Morton Foot Structure
Fascial Release for Structural Balance
Orthopedic Massage for the Extremities

How Massage Can Help Your Clients’ Cardiovascular Health - by admin@mcb on March 16 2015

How Massage Can Help Your Clients’ Cardiovascular Health

Did you know that massage therapy can help your heart? Recent research has concluded that regular and therapeutic massage therapy can help maintain a healthy heart and arteries. These results are helping to shape the way doctors view massage therapy and the benefits it may offer their patients.

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One of the keys to running a safe massage therapy business is keeping up to date with current research and scientific developments. Recent research has taught us a lot about the potential benefit of massage therapy

  • A 2008 study indicated that participants experienced an average drop in their blood pressure of 10 beats per minute. This drop was present after one 45 to 60 minute treatment.
  • A group of 50 people who experience mildly elevated blood pressure participated in a study that required them to receive a 15 minute massage three times a week for a total of 10 sessions. These participants experienced lower blood pressures after each treatment session and they remained lower for several days.
  • A 2014 study compared eight women with elevated blood pressures that participated in regular massage therapy to a control group that simply rested. The women that participated in the massage therapy sessions experienced a drop in pressures and their inflammation measurements also decreased. The control group had smaller improvements in the same measurements as the research group.

If you’d like to learn about more ways to help guarantee you are running a safe massage therapy business, visit us online at the Institute of Somatic Therapy. We offer a wide variety of online courses that can help transform your massage practice.

Create an Atmosphere to Add an Extra Layer of Healing to Your Massage - by admin@mcb on March 11 2015

Create an Atmosphere to Add an Extra Layer of Healing to Your Massage

If you are searching for ways to improve your massage therapy business, don’t overlook small changes that can have a big impact. Have you taken the time lately to consider the atmosphere you are creating during your massage sessions? Small changes to the atmosphere can help promote healing and the ability of the client to reach a deep meditative state.

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Creating an environment that allows a client’s brain to reach a state of quiet meditation will add an extra layer of healing to all of your massage work. Be conscious of the music you select. Choose songs that are interesting but without a melody or any loud passages. They should be always changing and lack repetition to create an atmosphere aimed at lulling the client’s mind. You should also focus on the physical atmosphere of the massage room. Make sure the lights can be dimmed to a point that promotes a client’s quiet meditation while still allowing you enough light to work.

Be careful when selecting scents for the space as well. You should choose scents that are calming and soothing and try to avoid those that may be too stimulative in nature.  Some people have a sensitivity to smells, and the last thing you want is for your client to leave with a migraine.

The Institute of Somatic Therapy can help you improve your massage therapy business. Visit us online today to learn more about the courses we offer to continue your massage therapy education.

Keeping Up With the Board Certification Changes for Massage - by admin@mcb on March 06 2015

Keeping Up With the Board Certification Changes for Massage

According to the NCBTMB, seeking board certification as a massage therapist helps you stand out from a crowded field and proves that you have acquired the skills and knowledge necessary for success. Board certification allows professionals in the massage therapy industry to possess a common language, pursue a set of standard skills, and advance their careers. There have been some recent changes to the board certification process of which you should be aware.

massage therapistStarting in 2015 the NCBTMB organization has restructured its efforts to focus specifically on board certification and will no longer offer professional licensure. Individuals seeking continuing education for massage therapy courses for licensure will need to work with other organizations. However, the requirements for becoming board certified remain unchanged. Individuals seeking certification will be required to demonstrate a mastery of skills and knowledge vital to working as a professional massage therapist. This certification serves as proof of a commitment to massage practices and ongoing professional standards.  If you have further questions or concerns about the board certification process you can visit the NCBTMB website.

The Institute of Somatic Therapy offers a variety of continuing education for massage therapy courses to help massage therapists stay current. Visit our website today to learn more about the courses we offer.

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