Massage Therapy School in Providence, RI
Rhode Island is, despite its diminutive size and population, a leader in the world of therapeutic massage. Providence is a place where healthcare professionals can get a solid foundation in oncology massage. They can also gain experience with other hospital populations.
Providence clients use massage for a variety of purposes, including general relaxation and easing of ordinary aches and pains. Some want a spa experience; it’s their goal to come away looking and feeling beautiful and nurtured. Others, though, want targeted therapy, and here too, Rhode Island massage therapists deliver.
Skill and savvy often translate into increased earnings. Some massage studios allow clients to schedule with their preferred therapist. Online bios help the first-time client select. Positive experiences can mean that the person will return again and again.
Rhode Island massage therapists work in spas, fitness centers, and healthcare settings. Healthcare settings run the gamut from small offices to major healthcare systems.
Massage Schools in Providence and Vicinity
The Community College of Rhode Island boasts a COMTA-accredited therapeutic massage program with certificate and associate’s degree options. The certificate program is 34 credits; the associate’s program is 61 credits. The associate’s degree program has additional general education requirements; it also includes more advanced therapeutic massage coursework.
Lincoln Tech offers a program that includes Swedish massage, deep tissue, and neuromuscular therapy. Like other programs, it includes a foundation in human physiologic sciences and some coursework in professional practice issues. The American Massage Therapy Association lists program hours as 720. Lincoln Tech also has a Massachusetts campus.
Massage in Healthcare
Women and Infants Hospital of Rhode Island counts massage among its integrative services. Massage is available to members of the general public but is offered at a reduced rate to seniors, oncology patients, and caregivers.
The Community College of Rhode Island has played a part in promoting massage as an integrative therapy: one that has the potential to aid in the opioid battle, helping those who have addictions and also those who are at risk because their prescription drugs are unsuccessful in managing their pain. The school notes that the governor included massage among the non-opioid pain management therapies that he wanted to see promoted (https://www.ccri.edu/massagetherapy/Codac.html).
Across the border in Massachusetts, one finds the new Herren Wellness Center, a comprehensive addiction facility operated by a former Boston Celtic, a former addict who now feels very good about his place in the world.
Living and Working in a Multi-State Metropolitan Area
Many of the postings that turn up in a Providence, Rhode Island job search are actually housed in Massachusetts. With the greater Providence metropolitan area extending as far as it does into Massachusetts, Rhode Island is in the unique position of being home base to a metropolitan area that boasts a population greater than that of the entire state!
Prospective students may want to bear in mind that Massachusetts sets educational standards higher, at least in terms of program hours. Massachusetts license application includes a coursework analysis form.
Many programs around the nation cover far more than the minimum required by their state boards, and Rhode Island is no exception! One will find programs in the Providence area that are hundreds of hours beyond the minimum mandated for Rhode Island licensure and that develop advanced competencies.
LMTs as Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurship is common – something that even governmental organizations recognize. A link on the massage therapy page of the Rhode Island Department of Health provides information about how to start a massage therapy business. The Community College of Rhode Island has gone so far as to state that most massage therapists are self-employed.
Massage therapists will have varying expenses based on the space they choose to work out of. They affiliate with other massage therapists and healthcare practitioners in varying ways. Sometimes they rent a room in the same building or suite but remain independent. Some Providence-area massage practices have one or two LMTs listed as owners; the other team members could be contractors or employees.
Massage therapists may have relationships with healthcare providers at other locations who make referrals. This is, after all, a pocket of the country where many are trained in clinical massage!
Massage therapists put their unique stamp on their business. The Valley Breeze recently profiled the LMT behind the new Body Grateful Day Spa (http://www.valleybreeze.com/2019-01-09/observer-smithfield-west/indulge-yourself-new-body-grateful-day-spa#.XNTjVRRKhdg). Her vision includes healthy organic products as well as customized bodywork. She’s put together a small team that includes an aesthetician. She laments that people often don’t put the care into maintaining their bodies that they do into maintaining their cars, and that they live with more stress in their bodies than they need to.
Rhode Island Massage Practices
The following are among Rhode Island’s popular massage practices.
Body Kneads is LMT-owned. The business boasts nine other LMTs. Manual lymphatic drainage is a specialty. Other services include prenatal massage, oncology massage, integrative sinus relief, and tailored integrative massage.
Heart in Hand counts Chakra balancing and aroma restorative massage among the modalities. Their hot stone massage is called sacred stone. It includes some extras that may appeal to clients’ spiritual side; Tibetan bells and other objects are used to create sound vibration on the stones at session conclusion. Heart in Hand LMTs can also provide basics like deep tissue and prenatal massage. The website lists eight massage therapists.
Unique Fitness and Massage Therapy boasts three LMTs. Personal training is among the other services offered.
Massage Therapist Wages
The average massage therapist hourly wage in the Providence-Warwick metropolitan area was $19.69 in 2018. The median was $18.02, with the vast majority making between $11.20 and $32.58.
Education is ongoing, and some LMTs choose to go well beyond the minimum. Individuals don’t necessarily have to be a graduate of a particular school to take advanced programs through the school. The Community College of Rhode Island offers hospital-based training and advanced hospital-based training for credentialed LMTs.
Some massage studios also provide continuing education. Body Kneads offers periodic manual lymphatic drainage certification courses.