Back to School Drive: A Great Success

At Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage, we place a lot of value on learning, growing, and living a balanced life. We love getting involved in the community and providing service to others in order to achieve these goals. We understand that being involved with good causes will help the students and staff of OSTM become more humble and happy.

students involved in back to school drive

Recently, our Syracuse and Rochester campuses were both involved in helping giving back to the community. Here’s what they did and how it unfolded:

Back to School

As the school year was about to start in August, we wanted to help kids who didn’t have what they needed. It’s important for children not only to have what they need for school, but to be excited and confident going into the first day of class. At OSTM we want to help young kids learn to love education!

What We Did

In order to help kids and parents out with the hustle and bustle of back to school, we had a school supplies drive at each of our campuses during the month of August. Clients who scheduled massages could bring in school supplies for kids and get a discount. Supplies that we collected for young students included:

  • Subject notebooks
  • Folders
  • Paper
  • Markers
  • Highlighters
  • Pens and pencils
  • Glue
  • Backpacks
  • Much more

small school child receiving school supplies

Our Partners

Each campus partnered up with a charity organization in the area to help connect the kids with the school supplies. In Rochester, Cameron Community Ministries helped us identify children that needed supplies and connected us with those children. In Syracuse, we partnered with Vera House which helps women and children who are victims of domestic violence. These organizations are pillars in their respective communities and played key roles in helping us get the supplies to where they needed to go.

The Results

It’s safe to say that our school supply drive was a huge success. There was a massive outpouring of generosity and kindness. Our students, staff, and partners were all excited to be a part of the project and the clients who donated were more than happy to do so. When diverse groups of people work together to serve others like this the results are amazing. While the children we helped received useful tools for their education, the people who benefited most were those who donated and organized those donations. When you help someone else do something that they can’t do for themselves, it changes you most of all.

Thank You!

OSTM is grateful for the help and service of everyone who was involved in our back to school drives. The opportunity for OSTM students to be able to participate in a service to the community has helped them grow personally and professionally. Thank you to all of our clients who made donations, Cameron Communities Ministries, and Vera House! We couldn’t have done it without you.

two kids saying thank you for the school supplies

Looking into the Future

You can count on OSTM to continue searching for ways to help and serve others. We are always looking for opportunities to help our students learn the importance of building and strengthening the community. If you are thinking about becoming a massage therapist, book a tour with us. You can become part of the OSTM team where you can become a licensed massage therapist and get involved in great causes. We can’t wait to meet you!

Holiday Stress Test

The holiday season has arrived! It’s an exciting time of year. You get to spend time with family and friends, go to parties, give and receive gifts, and eat lots of sweets. There’s a lot of good things that come with the holiday season, but for some it can also be a stressful time of year. Take our holiday stress test to get an idea of how much stress you’ll have to cope with this season.

Are you ready for the holiday season? Don’t forget to schedule your massage to help things go a little smoother this year.

Students of the Month: Chiedu and Naomi

The road to becoming a massage therapist is unique to other educational experiences. At Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage, school can take anywhere from 6 to 15 months. Students have the flexibility to finish school in a time frame that works for them and they can choose to take classes day or night. During this time, students are taught a myriad of techniques, modalities, processes, and much more.

There’s a lot to learn in a short amount of time, even if you choose the 15 month graduation track. We like to highlight students who show that if you have a passion for learning and helping others, you can learn and master the material! For the month of September we chose to highlight Chiedu from our Rochester campus and Naomi from our Syracuse campus.

Chiedu Monu

Meet Chiedu Monu

Chiedu wanted a career that would give him the satisfaction of helping people every day and the ability to create his own work schedule. How did Chiedu know that he could have these things as a massage therapist? He saw his wife, who is a practicing massage therapist, enjoy scheduling flexibility and the reward of helping others and he wanted that for himself. Chiedu began pursuing his dream at Onondaga in September 2016 and will be graduating in December 2017. Chiedu brings a big smile, positive attitude, and good work ethic to school with him every day. Everyone who works with or around Chiedu ends up having a better day as a result and that’s the kind of student we love to have around!

Big Plans

Chiedu’s wife is already running her own massage therapy business and when Chiedu graduates, he plans to add his expertise to the operation and help grow their business. We asked Chiedu to tell us about one thing he would like to accomplish when he starts working with his wife and this is what he said: “I would like to educate the general public on the health benefits of massage. There really isn’t anyone who wouldn’t benefit from regular massage treatments, especially if they want to be the best version of themselves. Massage Therapy was once looked at as a luxury experience, however, I believe it’s a necessity in today’s busy and hectic day and age.”

That’s a great goal, Chiedu! We can’t wait to see what you accomplish when you graduate and start working as a massage therapist. We have no doubt that you will do great things.

naomi plyter

Meet Naomi Plyter

Naomi has been described as diligent and conscientious by her instructors and peers. She has excelled in her studies and has received amazing feedback from her clients in the Student Massage Clinic. Naomi is authentic and compassionate and shows it by lifting other students up and helping them overcome their roadblocks. We love having students like Naomi because they make the environment positive and help everyone achieve greater balance. Thanks Naomi!


Naomi’s compassion also shows in what she wants to do as a massage therapist. When we asked her about what she plans to do when she graduates Naomi said, “The experience that I’ve had at OSTM has opened up different ideas of what I would like to pursue in massage. I initially came to the school set on working with pregnant women and infants/young children only, but as I continue through the courses, the goal has changed slightly. I would still like work with pediatrics, but also with those that are going through PTSD. I’m not yet certain where this will take me or how many more turns I’ll need to make before finding my niche. Knowing this, I am excited at the opportunities that I have now that I wouldn’t have had without learning from all the different instructors, the perspectives of my classmates, and clinic experience.”

Naomi is all about helping and serving others and that will help her become a great massage therapist. Way to go Naomi!

Build a New Career

If you’re interested in a career that is flexible and rewarding, contact us! We can help you begin your journey to becoming a massage therapist. You can follow the examples of Naomi and Chiedu and start a career helping others. Schedule a tour today and you can see what it’s like to be a student at Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage. We can’t wait to see you!

Student of the Month: Katy and Gabriela

Going to school to become a massage therapist requires hard work, ambition, and dedication. At Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage, there is no shortage of this. Our students display their great work ethic everyday. Because we have such amazing students, we like to highlight a few who have played a key role in making the atmosphere at OSTM what it is.

For this month, the students who stood out from the crowd are Katy Osborn from our Syracuse campus, and Gabriela Goff from our Rochester campus. Great job Gabby and Katy!

student of the month katy

Meet Katy Osborn

Katy is a relatively new addition to our 12 month program, but her ambition and determination set her apart immediately. She was chosen as a student of the month because of her kindness and display of servant leadership. She is always looking for opportunities to learn and help others.


Yoga, meditation, and living a balanced life are important to Katy. When asked what she wants to do after graduating from OSTM she said, “When I complete my year at OSTM, I hope to end up working with a chiropractor or physical therapist as a sports massage therapist. I am really interested in working with clients after an injury and helping them to get back to their sport, or to help athletes recover after a long race or difficult game. Ultimately, I hope to merge my love of yoga with massage. I might own my own business or learn shiatsu massage or just offer private yoga classes and massage services as I travel. I am really looking forward to exploring many different paths in front of me!”

Katy’s excitement and optimism about her future career is a great attribute. We can’t wait to see what she accomplishes!

Meet Gabriela Goff

Gabriela, or Gabby, is an amazing student that has been a part of the OSTM family since January. A recent client left some feedback after an appointment with Gabby.

“I came in to your clinic today at the recommendation of a friend who receives massage weekly to help with arthritic pain. I was greeted by my Student Massage Therapist, Gabby, and was immediately put at ease. Gabby listened to what was going on in my life and the difficulties I was having with pain in my forearms and legs. I could sense nothing but positivity coming from Gabby who gave me my massage and checked in with me frequently to ensure I was comfortable and that the right amount of pressure for me was being used. Afterwards, she gave me some stretching exercises and had me speak with her Clinical Supervisor to recommend some additional things I could do to help with my own arthritis. 50 minutes on the massage table with Gabby and I felt better than I have ever felt with any medication my physician prescribed me. I made sure to rebook an appointment for next week with Gabby and wanted to thank her for just being the phenomenal person she is and the amazing therapist she will become when she graduates.”


Gabby’s positive attitude and willingness to go out of her way to make others, like this happy client, feel great are just a couple of the reasons she was selected. Her amazing attitude is contagious and makes OSTM a brighter place. Her stellar academic performance also stands as a testament to her great work ethic. Gabby serves as a great example for other students on how to succeed and help others succeed. Way to go Gabby!

Start Your Flexible Future

Want to learn and build a career in the company of incredible students like Gabby and Katy? You can start building a flexible career with OSTM. Contact us or schedule a tour to learn more about how to get started.

Hometown Heroes: OSTM’s Public Servant Appreciation Month

At Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage, we know it is important to give back and add value to our community. Seek out opportunities to help people who act as the glue that holds our community together.

community hands working together

September is a great time to pay homage to those public servants who are the unsung heroes of our society. Firefighters, police officers, first responders, military personnel, educators, healthcare professionals, and community volunteers are a few examples of these unsung heroes. They work to keep our communities safe, healthy, and functional. At times, we can forget how much we rely on these everyday heroes.

Giving Back

While we may not be on the front lines with these people, we can use our own talents and skills to help them do their jobs better. At OSTM, we can do this through massage.

Public servant jobs are often either high stress or physically demanding. Sometimes they can be both. Through massage, we can help these hometown heroes unwind, relax, recover, and get ready emotionally and mentally to return to work. By giving them the benefits of massage, we can help them perform their duties more effectively.

military arm patch

Our Hometown Hero Discount

To commemorate Patriot Day and to honor all our hometown heroes, we are offering discounted massages for the entire month of September. To get your discount, just bring proof of your service.


  • Firefighters
  • Police officers
  • First responders
  • Healthcare professionals and hospital staff
  • Educators
  • School and university employees
  • Active or retired military members
  • Community Volunteers


  • $30 for a 50 minute massage
  • $60 for a 100 minutes massage

Either of the Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage campuses.

  • Syracuse – 719 East Genesee Street Syracuse, NY 13210
  • Rochester – 302 N. Goodman St. Rochester, NY 14607

You can schedule a massage at a time that is convenient for you.

  • To schedule a massage at Syracuse location call 315-424-1159
  • To schedule a massage at our Rochester location call 585-241-0070

You can see our clinic hours for each location here.

We Can’t Wait to See You

If you are a public servant and could use a massage, schedule your appointment today. It is also a great gift or token of appreciation if you know someone who works as a public servant. We are excited to hear from you and provide you with an amazing massage experience!

Student of the Month: Lindsey and Jonnathan

Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage is dedicated to the success of our talented and ambitious students. We believe the mark of a good school is a great student body, and inspiring, motivated students are in no short supply at OSTM. Each month, we like to feature students that have gone above and beyond at school and shown exceptional work during their time here.

This month, we’d like to feature Lindsey Vossler from our Rochester campus, and Jonnathan Pineda from our Syracuse campus. Congratulations Lindsey and Jonnathan!

Meet Lindsey Vossler

Lindsey is a student in our 6-month full time program. This program tends to attract motivated, driven students who want to finish up, get their license as quickly as possible, and get started on their flexible future. Lindsey is no exception, and she’s been a wonderful addition to the OSTM family!

It’s All About Attitude

Lindsey was nominated for our student of the month because of the positivity and motivation she brings to the table. Staff and classmates that work with her everyday know her for her work ethic and passion while working in the massage clinic; she’ll be the first to help lift spirits when things get stressful with a corny joke, by coordinating study groups with her peers, or even just offering a smile or a hug.

Her great attitude and personality have been described as “contagious” by those at OSTM that know her best. What’s more, Lindsey relocated to Rochester from her hometown to pursue the career training she wanted, a true testament to the determination and willpower of a great student!

ostm student of the month jonnathan pineda

Meet Jonnathan Pineda

Jonnathan is a classic example of a career-focused go-getter. A student in our 12-month program, Jonnathan kills it in the science curriculum, as well as the hands-on classes! He’s been a student that others have come to rely on for help with understanding course material, and Jonnathan has always happily volunteered his time to help fellow students.

When asked what inspired him to pursue a degree in the healing art of massage, he said,
“The field is very rewarding. It’s great to be a part of a dream in helping people in pain, recovering from injuries or experiencing stress. A big plus is the ability to set your own schedule. This is great for me since I will continue my education towards a Master’s in Occupational Therapy.”


That’s right, Jonnathan said a Master’s in Occupational Therapy. Jonnathan actually moved to Syracuse from NYC to add his massage license to his associate and bachelor’s degrees in the field. His career goals are bold and ambitious, but he takes on every challenge with a positive attitude and we have every bit of faith that he’ll achieve all of the goals he’s set out to!

The Onondaga Difference: Start Your Flexible Future!

We think our programs are pretty great, but it’s only because of the fun, positive, quality students that come through our doors every day to learn the art of massage.

Does the flexibility of a career in a massage pique your interest? Would you just love to be part of the family at OSTM’s campuses? Good news, you can! Contact us today to schedule a tour, or call us at 585-241-0070 (Rochester) or 315-424-1159 (Syracuse) to get your flexible future started!

How Much Do You Know About Massage Therapy?

There are a lot of appealing aspects of working as a massage therapist. The industry is growing and you get to spend your time helping others feel better. If you’re interested in building a new career, choose massage therapy. Start by taking our quiz to see how much you really know about massage therapy!

How did you do on our quiz? If you’re ready to learn more about becoming a massage therapist, contact us! You can also book a tour to see our campus and get a feel of what it will be like to get training for your new career!

Are Deep Tissue Massages Supposed to Hurt?

Deep tissue massages can hurt, but that pain may not necessarily be considered “bad.” The purpose of a deep tissue massage is to work on all of the body’s soft tissues, especially the fascia, a layer of tissue that covers the muscles. A massage therapist might add more pressure than a normal massage to work these tissues and can help with sports injuries, back pain, and muscle tension. This extra pressure can cause pain and discomfort, but you can let your massage therapist know if it’s too much pain for you.

deep tissue massage on shoulders

What Can Deep Tissue Massages Help With?

Deep tissue massages are similar to other types of massages, but a massage therapist might add additional pressure to work with the fascia to help a variety of problems. A deep tissue massage can help with:

  • Lower or Upper Back Pain
  • Mobility
  • Sports Injuries
  • Carpal Tunnel
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Posture Problems
  • Sports Injuries
  • Muscle Tension

What Can You Do if Your Massage Hurts?

While a deep tissue massage is likely to cause some pain, it’s still important to know what to do if it hurts too much. When receiving a deep tissue massage, do these things:

  • Evaluate the pain. Many massages are described as creating a “good pain” where there’s an ache, but it still feels “good.” This kind of pain is normal for a massage. However, if you only feel pain and no relief, it may be possible that the massage therapist is using too much pressure.
  • Ask the massage therapist to use less pressure. While pressure is necessary to work out muscle tension, too much pressure can cause more tension rather than relieving it. If the pain is too much, work with your massage therapist to find the right pressure for you.
  • Find someone new. A good massage therapist will listen and work with you to provide the best massage for you. While some pain and discomfort is common, if the pain is too much and the massage therapist doesn’t listen, find someone new the next time you need a massage. You can and should decide how much pain you can take.

therapist giving deep tissue massage

What Should You Do After Getting a Deep Tissue Massage?

A deep tissue massage can leave you sore and aching, much like how your body feels after a hard workout. Prepare to be sore, but you don’t have to be miserable. Here are different ways you can relieve the aches and pains of a deep tissue massage:

  • Drink plenty of water. Much like a workout, a massage works your muscles in different ways. While it’s unproven if water prevents soreness, it’s still a good idea to drink water before and after a massage.
  • Take a warm bath. No matter what made you sore, a warm bath is a great way to relax and soothe aches and pains from a good massage.
  • Soak in epsom salt. Epsom salt combined with a warm bath can also help relax your muscles and calm any post-massage aches. Want the ultimate relaxing experience? Choose an epsom salt with fragrances to soothe both your mind and body.

If you want something similar to a deep tissue massage, check out our massage clinic to receive a Swedish massage. A Swedish massage is a great way to relieve tense muscles without the intensity of a deep tissue massage. Schedule your appointment now! All student clinic work is supervised by a NYS licensed massage therapist.

Syracuse Back to School Drive

Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage (OSTM) Syracuse Campus is excited to be partnering with local non-profit Vera House INC. to gather school supplies for young children in the Syracuse area. The school donation drive will run from August 10-31, 2017, and you can be a part of this wonderful cause! Here’s how:

Book Your Massage

You can get a discount* when you book one of these massages in our student clinic by bringing in a donation from the list below:

  • 50 minute Swedish Massage for $30.00 ($10 in savings!)
  • 100 minute Swedish Massage for $60.00 ($15 in savings!)

Book Your Appointment Now!

Available Appointment Times

Wednesday-Friday 5:00 PM, 6:15 PM, and 7:30 PM.

Saturday9:00 AM, 10:15 AM, 11:30 AM, 1:00 PM, 2:15 PM, and 3:30 PM.

How to Book Your Appointment

Contact our student clinic at 315 -424-1159 to book your massage and use code 4Vera2017.

school supplies

Items to Donate

Donate one of these items to get your discount!

  • Subject notebooks (various sizes)
  • Pocket folders
  • Loose-leaf paper
  • Black and blue pens
  • Pencils (includes colored pencils)
  • Glue or glue sticks
  • Pencil cases
  • Dry erase markers
  • Highlighters

Why OSTM is Getting Involved

Here at OSTM, we believe in giving back. Essentially, massage is about helping others, and we know that our student massage therapists can do that in many ways. From appointments to food drives to local charity events, we want to give our students the chance to make the local community a better place.

Vera House

Want to learn more and do more with Vera House? Check out their website!


Appointments are limited! Book now!


*Discount available August 10th through August 31st 2017 with the donation of an item listed above at the time of your appointment. Items must be new and in good condition. Discount cannot be combined with other offers. Discounts for donation are only available on massages during the period listed above and cannot be put toward future massages or gift card purchases.

All serviced provided by students under the supervision of licensed professionals.

Rochester Back to School Drive

Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage (OSTM) Rochester Campus is happy to come together with local partner Cameron Community Ministries to make sure that the school children in Rochester County have the best start to their new school year. Together, we are hoping to gather donations of school items. The donations drive began on August 9th and will end August 31st. Here’s what you need to do to be a part of this back to school drive.

Book a Massage

You can get a discount** on an appointment when you book one of these massages at our Rochester student clinic:

  • 50 minute Swedish Massage for $30.00 ($10 in savings!)
  • 100 minute Swedish Massage for $60.00 ($15 in savings!)

Available Appointments

Monday – Wednesday 5:00 PM, 6:15 PM, and 7:30 PM.

Thursday and Friday 1:00 PM, 2:15 PM, 3:30 PM, 5:00 PM, 6:15 PM, and 7:30.

Saturday 9:00 AM, 10:15 AM, 11:30 AM, 1:00 PM, 2:15 PM, and 3:30 PM.

How to Set Your Appointment

To reserve your space use code CCM for the discount when calling 585-241-0070, or contact Sara Sorenson at Cameron Community Ministries by email or by phone 585-254-2697.

young school girl getting ready for school

Donate School Items

  • Boxes of crayons, markers, and/or colored pencils
  • Boxes of Kleenex
  • 2 pocket folders
  • Paper towels
  • 1 subject notebook
  • Bottles of hand sanitizers
  • 10 pack of pens or pencils
  • Containers of disinfecting wipes
  • Book bag
  • Lunch box or bag

Why OSTM is Getting Involved

Here at OSTM, we believe in giving back. Essentially, massage is about helping others, and we know that our student massage therapists can do that in many ways. From appointments to food drives to local charity events, we want to give our students the chance to make the local community a better place.

We hope to see many of our neighbors and friends here at our clinic, and remember, after the drive you can still book an appointment in our student clinic at regular price.

Other Opportunities to Help

If you’re interested in assisting Cameron Community Ministries in another way, contact Sara Sorenson, the Emergency Services Coordinator via email or by phone 585-254-2697.

**Discount cannot be combined with any other promotional discount.
All services provided by students under the supervision of licensed professionals.