5 Misconceptions About Massage Therapy

Do you want to help heal others through the power of massage therapy? At Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage, our licensed massage therapist program is designed to help you join this growing field. Though massage therapy has existed for thousands of years, there are still some common misconceptions about massage. So before you take the next step to begin your massage therapy education, let’s bust some myths!

All Massages Are the Same

Though all massages share some key traits, there are several specific types of massage. Each technique targets different parts of the body and focuses on healing different issues.For example, a Swedish massage is a great option for those who have a lot of tension in their body and are new to massage therapy. The massage therapist uses a combination of kneading, long strokes, and deep circular motions for 60-90 minutes to relax muscles and manage minor pain.

A trigger point massage is ideal for those with injuries, chronic pain, or a specific condition. Tightness in certain muscles (trigger points) can cause pain in other parts of the body like migraines/severe headaches. Focusing on these points can relieve pain in those specific areas.

At Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage, we want our students to be able to safely and correctly perform a variety of massage types on their future clients. That’s why we incorporate several massage techniques into our curriculum, along with education in anatomy, physiology, and neurology.

Massages Only Impact Muscles

Massage feels great, but it does much more than just alleviate muscle pain! While massage doesn’t replace medical or psychiatric care, it’s been proven to aid in the relief of stress, depression, and anxiety. During a massage, the brain releases “feel good” chemicals serotonin and dopamine. It also releases endorphins, which are neurotransmitters that naturally decrease pain and the effects of stress.

Anxiety and stress affect millions of adults in the United States, which means people need massages more than ever. As a massage therapist, you could help alleviate those feelings for your clients. If you want to help someone feel better in their mind and body, pursuing massage therapy could be a great option for you.

woman getting head massage

Massage Benefits are Temporary

Massage may seem like a one-time “treat yourself” experience. However, they can actually be an integral part of a healthy lifestyle, just like diet and exercise. Regular massage can be helpful for specific conditions and chronic diseases such as:

  • Insomnia
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Anxiety/chronic stress
  • Headaches
  • Digestive disorders
  • TMJ pain
  • Sports injuries

If someone suffers from any of these conditions, receiving a monthly or bi-monthly massage could help reduce the negative effects. Some studies have also found that regular massage can improve posture, blood circulation, and flexibility. With so many people sitting at computers all day long with improper posture, this can be hugely beneficial!

Massage Only Works If It’s Painful

When it comes to massage, you may have heard the term “it hurts so good” to explain the feeling. If someone has tight or sore muscles, it’s normal for the area to be tender as the massage therapist works to relieve pressure. This feeling is also normal for a deep tissue massage, since this technique involves firm pressure to reach deeper layers of muscle.

While sensitivity is normal, actual pain is not. A client should always tell their massage therapist if they’re experiencing serious pain during a session. The massage therapist can adjust their technique and level of pressure to reduce pain.

Massage Therapists Only Work in Spas

Most of us imagine a relaxing spa environment when we think of massage. However, massage therapists can work in hospitals, doctors offices, and hospices. Whether it’s aiding in physical therapy or improving the quality of life for cancer patients, massage therapists can often find work in healthcare settings.

sports massage therapist

If setting your own schedule sounds ideal to you, consider freelance massage therapy. As a freelance massage therapist, you could work from your home or travel to the client’s home. Many massage therapists also find work at resorts, hotels, and on cruise ships. There is a huge variety of workplace options for licensed massage therapists. It all comes down to personal preference!

Contact Us To Learn More

We can’t wait to tell you more about massage therapy at Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage! Contact us today to learn how you could become a licensed massage therapist in as little as six months. Want to see our facilities for yourself? You can take a virtual tour of our Rochester and Syracuse campuses on our website.


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