10 Things to Know About a Career in Massage Therapy
August 4th, 2021 / By Eastern College
Brandy John is an Instructor for the Massage Therapy Diploma program at Eastern College. With over 20 years of experience, Brandy is highly qualified and knowledgeable in the field. Brandy is highly involved in the industry as an active Massage Therapist, who is also certified in Acupuncture and Reflexology. When she’s not teaching massage hopefuls about proper technique and theory, Brandy can be found fulfilling duties as President of the OCPMTC (Ontario Council of Private Massage Therapy Colleges), President of CCMTS (Canadian Council of Massage Therapy Schools), and a board member of the CMTCA (Canadian Massage Therapy Alliance). Although Brandy is a seasoned Massage Therapy professional with a lot on her plate, she is always available to help students perfect their craft.
1. What are some soft skills that one should have going into the Massage Therapy field?
Massage therapists need to have good communication skills to educate clients and others about the benefits of massage and how it can help them achieve optimal wellness. Employers frequently ask for graduates who are assertive and confident in their abilities and willing to learn. Interprofessional collaboration is also important to create an environment of shared respect and care in multidisciplinary clinics.
2. Is it hard to get into the field after school?
Massage is more in demand than ever. Nationally, massage was one of the most rapidly expanding therapies over the past two decades or so (rate of change between 1997 and 2016) according to the Frasier report on complementary and alternative medicine 2017. The demand from employers seeking massage therapists has continued to increase and is at an all-time high.
3. What made you become an instructor?
I love being a massage therapist and teaching was a way to share my knowledge but also extend my reach to help care for more people through my wonderful students and future peers.
4. How many years have you been with Eastern College?
I am approaching my fifth year working with Eastern College and have enjoyed working in an encouraging positive learning environment with many other healthcare professionals, IT, and business specialists.
5. How are you involved in the field outside of being an instructor?
I am involved in many organizations and activities to encourage growth in the profession and to employ best practices for our students. I am president of the OCPMTC, president of CCMTS, recent Board member of the CMTCA, Ambassador to the RMTAO for students, guest presenter
for One Concept, researcher, and writer. I am also a tutor in acupuncture for McMaster University.
6. Do you have any special trainings or certifications?
Massage therapists continue their education when they graduate and over 22 years I have accumulated a lot of certifications including acupuncture, reflexology, cupping, hot stone, fascial and organ release, and many others. I also have several instructor certifications, leadership, business, marketing, and communication certificates. I enjoy learning and feel keeping current with trends and current research aids my clients, students, and myself.
7. Has COVID-19 affected jobs in the Massage field?
Yes, clinics are reporting they are busier than ever with the need for treatments for physical and mental stress. Repetitive injuries with our new on-screen lifestyles and the need for communication and contact with others in a time of isolation.
8. What are some misconceptions about the field?
That you will wear out and not last long in the profession. Massage therapy has a high retention rate in the profession based on statistics from the CMTO. Like any profession having good business skills in the first 5 years like any business is key. Students will learn how to maintain good health, posture, and use their body weight to keep at optimal working levels for as long as they like. I work at the college but also run my own business and treat clients daily. Treating those clients reminds me that I need to also take my own suggestions and live a life that promotes my happiness and comfort.
9. What is the best part about the field
The smile people have when they walk in waiting for their massage and knowing the time is here. Also, the look on their face when they are about to leave and realize how wonderful they can really feel and that they are going to continue to have good habits to keep them feeling better when they leave.
10. Are you working on any special projects
I have just completed my terms on the CMTCA – Canadian Massage Therapy Council for Accreditation. I am looking forward to continuing to work on maintaining and adding best practices to Eastern College for massage therapy to meet current trends. I also work on a broader level as President of the OCPMTC – Ontario Council of Private Massage Therapy Schools and as President of CCMTS – the Canadian Council of Massage Therapy Schools to reinforce our common goals and best practices across Canada. I also work with the RMTAO as a student ambassador speaking to schools about the purpose and benefits of the association as an advocate for the profession.
Learn more about the /massage Therapy Diploma Program at /eastern college here: Massage Therapy Program