Massage Therapist

What does it take to become a Massage Therapist?

What qualifications and experience do I need?

You will be expected to have a level three massage qualification. This qualification can be achieved as part of a level three beauty therapy qualification or a holistic qualification. Depending on the work location some employers will prefer you to have qualifications in hot stones and pre-blended aromatherapy. Whilst studying at Beauty Skills Academy you will have the opportunity to work on your peers and member of the public. We make a small charge to members of the public to help cover some of the treatments costs and to attach a value to your treatment, clients are more discerning when they pay and are more likely to provide honest and constructive feedback which will help you improve your techniques. We also provide opportunities for you to work in community settings, such as care homes and education providers to broaden your experience of a diverse client mix. Salon experience is not always required but you can expect to complete a trade test.

What personal skills and qualities do I need?

High standards of personal presentation and hygiene are vital as you will be working in close contact with your clients. Massage has many physical and psychological benefits for the client and as their massage therapist you need to have excellent communication skills to establish the client’s needs and expectations. You also need to be able to explain the achievable outcomes and lifestyle recommendations to the client in a sensitive manner. Your ability to maintain a professional demeanour with a clients of differing ages, genders, sizes and shapes will put the client at ease.

Where could I find work?

Beauty salons and spas are found in locations throughout the world, on cruise ships, aeroplanes and resorts. If you have a desire to travel or base yourself in another country long or short term the opportunities are plentiful for ambitious therapists with salon experience. For massage therapists with a keen interest and talent in deep tissue or sports massage opportunities exist to work alongside osteopaths and physiotherapists, this may be in private practice or within the NHS, there is also opportunity for part-time work with sporting clubs such as football or running. Massage has more recently been recognised in the mainstream for its ability to improve the mental wellbeing of patients undergoing treatments or palliative care for cancer, those with addictions and those with mental ill-health concerns, because of this there are now paid and voluntary roles in this sector.

What progression opportunities are there?

For those therapists with significant salon/spa experience and strong admin skills can progress to management positions. Good availability of high quality training opportunities exists enabling you to specialise as a sports massage therapist or holistic therapist.