THE RADICAL RMT
SHOULD YOU TAKE COURSES YOUR FIRST YEAR IN MASSAGE PRACTICE?
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If you are a new massage therapist and you are beginning to discover all the amazing courses, modalities, techniques, trainings, retreats, workshops, seminars etc that you can take to enhance your career- I bet you feel like you want to take them all now. Like, right now! Maybe you have something in mind in order to work with a specific population, you want to go deeper on a technique you learned in school, or you have seen something that "looks cool" and you want to try. On the other hand, maybe you are feeling overwhelmed by all the options and since continuing education plays a big role in maintaining your practice you are willing to take anything just to earn the credits and maintain practice standards. Either way I have some thoughts on whether or not you should take courses in your first year of practice. If you are beyond your first year in practice I would love it if you shared your feedback!
NO EDUCATION IS WASTED
I have taken courses, workshops, and seminars that may have been interesting to me at the time but I am not using the content today. I don't consider these courses a waste of time or money. I know that some element may play a part in my career someday or a network connection I made is important to my career development or personal life. Be kind to yourself if you find you are trying to justify courses you feel you haven't put into action- yet.
Consider the type of massage therapist you want to be or what type of clinic you want to operate one day? Do you want to work with athletes? Do you want to work in a multidisciplinary clinic? Do you want to work primarily with prenatal patients? Do you have a massage therapist you aspire to be? What certifications do they have? Look at what it takes to become your best future massage therapist self and work backwards.
WHAT DO YOU NOTICE?
Your first year of practice should be about getting your hands on as many bodies as possible. Get the experience and start to discover your favourite and least favourite parts of the profession. It should be about discovering your strengths and noticing your weaknesses. From these two places you can better choose your courses to improve your practice skills. Are you a wizard with carpal tunnel? Are clients referring to you for your amazing neck treatments that relieve headaches? You are discovering a niche and you can narrow in on courses to serve a specific population. On the other side- when a client comes in with knee pain do you stumble with a treatment plan? It's ok. Maybe this is an area you want to improve on and you should seek courses that will help you treat with confidence.
CAN YOU SEE THE FUTURE OF MASSAGE THERAPY?
Massage therapy is in high demand right now and this demand is only going to grow in the next decade. We have the power to educate the public on our scope of practice including the modalities and specific populations we can serve. Consider adding a modality to your practice now and be the one that patients are seeking out in droves. We all know that baby boomers are going to want to be pampered in their retirement years and you can centre yourself as the massage therapist to provide exceptional care to this population.
MORE FROM THIS EPISODE
What certifications do I have as an RMT and why? How to plan for a long and healthy massage career. Why you should seek courses outside the scope of massage. Why you can't let CEUs lead your massage education.
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Krista Dicks, RMT since 2006, practices in Ottawa, Canada and is a Certified Stott Pilates instructor. She is the host of The Radical RMT Podcast and has been published in the International Journal of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork and received an honourable mention in the Massage Therapy Foundation Inaugural Practitioner Case Report Contest. Krista is co-host of the first annual “Take Care of You School.” This virtual event for massage therapists focused on self-care for the massage therapist and presenters were represented globally to share their experience on topics of physical, mental, emotional, and financial well-being. It’s Krista's goal to encourage massage therapists to experience life on their terms thanks to the opportunities we have in our profession. With a willingness to grow and self-care of body and mind she believes we can maintain long-term fulfilling careers.
I'm a girl who was told by my grandma that I have magic hands and so I became a massage therapist. I love reading in bed, the combo of peanut butter and chocolate anything, and working from my laptop or phone with my dogs by my side. My mission? To help other massage therapists own their awesome and do what they love every darn day! Even if that love is not massage therapy.