Wednesday, March 15, 2017
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5 Reasons to Get a Massage Therapy Certificate in your Gap Year.jpg

Your last semester of high school can be simultaneously exciting and terrifying: on the one hand, you’re about to graduate, and the world is going to open up to you in an entirely new way. On the other hand, the adults in your life are constantly asking what you’re planning to do with your life after graduation.

If you’re one of the growing numbers of people who have decided to participate in a gap year, you’ll have more time to figure out your future. By taking a year-long break after graduating high school, you have a wonderful opportunity to explore your options and maximize your personal growth before heading to college. An excellent option during this time is to pursue a massage therapy certificate, which will benefit you in the five ways described below.

1.You’ll become a more well-rounded and employable person with a massage therapy certificate.

To be successful, massage therapists must learn how to work effectively with their clients in order to provide the best care and treatment. In addition to massage techniques, it is important for them to learn how to develop long-term professional relationships with clients.

With National University’s rigorous and unique massage therapy curriculum, you not only get hands-on training in various massage techniques but also gain real-life work experience with patients and clients in the massage therapy suite at the on-campus Whole Health Center clinic. The clinic provides an essential opportunity to put classroom learning to practical application.

This kind of experience shows future employers (and admissions counselors at colleges) that you have a strong desire to learn new skills and the self-discipline, time management, and intellectual curiosity that it takes to acquire those skills. All of the classroom and clinical training at NUHS will make you a more appealing candidate for future massage therapy jobs or any other career you choose to pursue.

2. You can make some (much needed) cash as a massage therapist

A certificate in massage therapy is well worth the investment. During college, many work part-time in retail or waiting tables. This often means working long hours for minimal pay. As a massage therapist you can typically work fewer hours for a much higher hourly rate.

Massage therapy can be quite lucrative — according to American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA)the average salary for massage therapists is $47/hour — and once you get a job, you can earn and save money for your future, whether or not you decide to go to college.

If you enroll in college, you can feel comfortable finding a position as a massage therapist almost anywhere. Massage therapy is a popular and thriving industry, so no matter where you are, you can be sure to find work in massage franchises, salons, and even within health care facilities.

3. You’ll still be able to enjoy your gap year even while earning a massage therapy certificate.

If you want to enjoy your gap year by visiting potential colleges or spending time with family and friends, a massage therapy certificate is a great choice. National University’s massage therapy certificate is taught in the evenings, which leaves your days free for other pursuits. You can also attend part time, which can make your schedule even more flexible.

Once you become a massage therapist, you will have an income that will help you finance your education. Its flexibility allows you to work during school, as you’re looking for a job, or considering graduate school.

4. You can explore a career in health care while taking massage therapy classes.

With classes in anatomy and physiology, you will get a taste of the health career field. At NUHS, you will gain a comprehensive understanding of human anatomy through instruction in a graduate level medical cadaver lab. You will actually see the musculature, ligaments, and organ systems — not just read about them in books. Very few massage schools in the country offer the advantage of learning from human cadavers.

At our on-campus clinic, you’ll also have the chance to work alongside other health care students and practitioners from chiropractic medicine, naturopathic medicine, acupuncture, and oriental medicine. This may open your eyes to advanced health care careers. Since several health care field options are available all on one campus, NUHS makes it easy for you to explore other opportunities.

5. You’ll physically and spiritually benefit from pursuing a massage therapy certificate.

If you’ve ever had a massage from a qualified therapist, you know how relaxing and beneficial it is to a person’s overall health. What many people don’t realize is that massage therapists also benefit from the work that they do. Massage therapy keeps you active with your whole body engaged.

Since massage therapy is not a sedentary job, you stay in better physical shape simply by the physical work you do. You also get to work in peaceful environments, making the ambiance a relaxing experience for both the client and the massage therapist. Many massage therapists also acknowledge that their work is spiritually uplifting to them as they help clients feel more relaxed, reduce anxiety, or heal from injuries and overworked muscles.

At National University of Health Sciences, you can earn your Certification in Massage Therapy in three trimesters or just one year of convenient evening classes, which makes it the perfect option for a gap year. Contact our Office of Admissions for more information at 1-800- 826-6285 or email at admissions@nuhs.edu.

Learn more about Massage Therapy and other career opportunities in alternative medicine by subscribing to The Future of Integrative Health.

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Posted by Debra Cascio

Debra Cascio is an undergraduate admissions counselor at National University, who works with prospective students just starting their journey into health care. To Cascio, the best part of her position is learning about students' dreams and what influenced them to go into their chosen field. She grew up in Villa Park, Illinois, and is currently finishing up a degree in general studies from Columbia College in Missouri.