Whether you are still in massage school or just completed a massage therapy program, it's never too early to start looking at the continuing education options available to massage therapists and bodyworkers.
When you're ready to enroll in your first continuing education class, be sure to open your eyes and embrace the full spectrum of continuing education options offered to professional massage therapists and bodyworkers. Practitioners who have been taking continuing education classes for years may be prone to go with what they know and keep taking similar continuing education courses in a similar manner. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, it can prevent you from experiencing new and different forms of continuing education, which may prove beneficial for you and your future massage therapy practice.
Before you officially enroll in a continuing education class, take time to search for all available continuing education options. For starters, you will most likely want to check out the various methods available for taking continuing education courses: locally and in person; a destination seminar; or via an online venue.
There are your three basic options when it comes to how you choose to take your continuing education course. Some massage practitioners prefer on-site instruction to learn new hands-on techniques, as they are able to receive immediate feedback from the instructor and fellow colleagues. However, if you're interested in seeking continuing education on how to better handle business tasks such as marketing your massage practice or accounting, then an online or home-study course can give you the flexibility to learn at your own pace, on your own time.
If you have the time and financial resources to take a trip, then a destination seminar can provide a unique and memorable learning experience. Learning a new skill in a new environment can be exciting, and being surrounded by other massage practitioners who share your same passion for massage can be inspiring. If you do decide to purse continuing education via a destination seminar, know that this is seen as a business expense and may be tax deductible.
It can be a wonderful idea to get some experience taking several different continuing education classes via all three methods. By doing so, you may be able to determine the manner in which you are best able to learn and absorb the information being taught in each continuing education class.
You may find you really enjoy the intensive destination continuing education seminars when it comes to advancing your skills in a specific hands on technique. You might also learn you are fine with online continuing education courses as long as the topic is not tactile, but more business-oriented.
Besides taking into account your own preferred method for learning, there are several other factors that can come into play as you attempt to select your first continuing education class. Two of the biggest factors for most massage therapists and bodyworkers are time and money. When you are short on one or both, you may feel more compelled to take continuing education online, rather than travel to a vacation destination for an intensive seminar.
Carefully consider all of these factors, along with your own personal needs and desires, as you seek out your first continuing education experience.