How to choose the best massage schools in Seattle
Where you get your education is one of the biggest decision you’ll need to make in your entire massage therapy career. The school you choose equips you with the skills and knowledge necessary for success in your therapy practice. Since choosing a reputable massage school is a huge investment in terms of money and time, you must ensure you invest wisely. You must have adequate information to help you make an informed decision.
The following are the three major attributes that characterize a top-rated massage school:
- Specialized coursework
- Excellent recognized teachers
- Great reputation
photo credit – Instruction Room, West Seattle Campus of Northwest Academy for the Healing Arts
That being said, let us now look at the
Top 10 tips to choosing between Seattle massage schools:
Tip #1: Cost/Tuition Fees
The cost of public or private institutions is the largest determining factor when choosing massage training schools. Public community colleges allow extended times to complete coursework, associate degree designations, and lower tuition fees. Private massage schools, on the other hand, tend to focus more on massage therapy featuring a dedicated facility, vision, and desire. So it’s up to you to decide on which of these two options meet your needs.
In regards to tuition fee, the old axiom, “you get exactly what you pay for” highly applies. On average, tuition ranging from $6-$17 hourly. In some states, It stands at $9-$10.
Obviously, top schools fall above these averages. Nonetheless, while that might be the case, you should consider specifically what is included in the tuition cost. Minor details such as a massage table are part of the program in some schools and miss in others.
Tip #2: Teacher Experience
Teachers must be qualified and have sufficient experience to teach you modalities and basics, which you might be taking.
Tip #3: Program Length
Different states need particular minimum hours for one to be licensed. Consequently, make sure that the massage program you’re interested in covers the requirements set out by the state. Some massage programs can be as long as four years while others can be as short as three months. Most private programs normally run from 6 months to around one year. The other Important thing, which you need to consider, has to do with the length for specializations in sports or spa massage therapy for their needed certification and licensing.
Tip #4: Types of Massage Offered
Ever heard of the common aphorism ‘less is more’? Well, it is quite different when it comes to selecting a massage school.
Tip #5: Financial Aid
Federal financial aid is available to accredited schools only. Therefore, if you qualify, you should be able to secure federal student aid.
Tip #6: Accreditation
The massage school, which you choose, must be accredited. Accreditation highly matters since it is an instant backing for any claims the school makes concerning its teachers, courses as well as the services they offer. It also backs the amount of tuition money the school requires.
Accreditation akin to a seal of approval. Since it is something that every educational institution is needed to renew, you can rest assured that the institution you settle for has met all requirements and maintained its status consistently.
Tip #7: Certification Examination Preparation
Top massage schools are prepared for certification by any of the eight-certification testing organizations. Moreover, a top school has at least preparatory classes for MBLEx and NCETMB certifications exams. These two stand out as the most prevalent.
Tip #8: State Licensing
When it comes to verifying state licensing, you’ll need individual research. This is because requirements such as continuing education, certification, class education, and hours of practical hands-on experience vary between different states. A world-class massage school should have answers to this question, “will the programs offered enable students to apply and get a state license?”. If the answer is no, then you may take certification exams that enable state licensing afterward.
Important Note: In the United States, only five states don’t regulate their massage therapy industries. Of the five, one of them is currently in the process of instituting the needed regulation.
Tip #9: Hands-on Training Component
The advent of online learning has made numerous massage therapy schools to offer 100% online education and trend. Nonetheless, within the massage therapy career, hands-on applied training trend coupled with a certified trainer is the most favored.
A good number of high-end spas won’t even consider the employment of massage therapists until they achieve not less than 1000 hours in terms of hands-on experience. Some schools provide hands-on experience within their programs, even though most of them offer 500 – 600 hours only.
Tip #10: Student-Teacher Ratio
The massage schools normally have a low student-teacher ratio. The ratio should stand at 10:1 or even lower. The is especially true when it comes to the practical hands-on portion of a massage program.
Undoubtedly, one of the most important decision you’ll have to make as a prospective massage therapist has to do with choosing the best massage school. To some people, the choice of a massage school doesn’t matter. They believe in the notion that ‘massage trend institutions are more or less the same.’ However, nothing could be further from the truth.
To settle for the best massage school in Seattle, you should consider the 10 tips mentioned above.
Last but not least, here is our recommendation — Northwest Academy
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