Once you’ve decided you want to pursue a career as a massage therapist, yet another important decision awaits. Despite popular belief, attending a massage therapy school is not a mere formality on your path to getting hands-on experience. A massage therapy school is the place where you lay the foundation for your future career and choose your specialization, so it is of the essence to choose wisely.
Here are 6 questions you should ask in order to choose the Arizona massage therapy school best suited to your needs.
1. Has the school got a state-approved accreditation?
According to recent statistics, only half of the institutions currently offering massage therapy programs have a state-approved accreditation, given that the process is voluntary and costly. Unless the school is accredited, you have no guarantee it will provide you with the knowledge and skill set needed to meet the state licensing requirements.
2. Does the school specialize in massage therapy training?
Are you truly committed to becoming a qualified massage therapist? If so, you would be well-advised to choose a specialized Arizona massage therapy school, rather than a community college that offers massage training alongside other vocational training programs.
3. What is the school’s professed mission?
The mission statement gives you a glimpse of the aims and scope of the school’s program and of the skill set and values it nurtures. Whereas traditional Western massage programs have tended to focus more on providing technical massage skills, holistic massage schools, which combine Eastern and Western traditions, focus on the person as a whole, nurturing inner growth.
4. How is the curriculum organized?
While a wide variety of courses is a plus, it is important to ensure that they are organized coherently and in a manner suited to your learning style. For instance, some schools have a “buffet” approach to teaching, allowing students to take classes in any order they see fit. Others have strict requirements as to the sequence of courses that a student is supposed to take.
5. How much will it cost?
Get detailed information as to the school tuition, fees and possibilities of getting financial aid. When you add up the costs, make sure you also compute additional expenses, including a massage table and necessary supplies.
6. Has it got the right “vibe”?
Although the school might seem the perfect fit for you in theory, make sure it also “feels” right. Visit the campus and, if possible, ask to sit on a class or two to get a better sense of the actual teacher-student interaction.
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