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How to get started in Massage therapy in Pennsylvania

The loss of jobs in Pennsylvania has left thousands of residents wondering is it time to make a career change, and younger residents making preparations to enter the workforce are taking a closer look at which career fields they should enter to have the best chance of finding jobs when they finish their educations.

During hard times, consumers tighten their belts. When this happens there are fewer diners in restaurants. This means that waiters, cooks and restaurant managers are not needed and lose jobs. People buy fewer cars, and hundreds and thousands of jobs are eliminated in the automobile industry. People spend less on vacations and motel and hotel employees suffer. What industry is less likely to suffer during an economic slow down? Along these lines, one area to think about is the medical industry, and related occupations. Regardless of how tough times get, hospitals continue to fill up. People continue to get sick and injured.

A good first step for individuals (whether fresh out of high school or adults contemplating a career change) who are thinking about starting careers in massage therapy is to take the time to introduce themselves to someone already working as a therapist. If individuals already know someone then that is the perfect scenario. If not, they probably know someone who knows or has used the services of a therapist. Maybe they have a relative who recently spent time in the hospital or had an injury and was under the care of a massage therapist.

A practicing therapist can answer questions about the daily routine of the profession and provide information that only someone with practical experience can relay. The therapist can also make recommendations about where a potential student of massage therapy should consider volunteering. Yes, volunteering is the next step. With some training programs, volunteer work can be used as credit toward a degree and even if this does not apply, the experience is invaluable. Working with actual patients, even if the volunteer is simply performing small tasks for a professional therapist, will give the volunteer an idea of what to expect should he enter the profession.

Armed with a little experience and knowledge about the profession, potential therapists should be ready to start their educations. Though, they would be better advised to consult Pennsylvania state requirements for licensure before starting a program of training/study. Through contact with the governing body, students can confirm that completion of the programs they have chosen will provide them with the educational backgrounds to practice in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania appears to be on track to pass more laws governing the practice and certification of massage therapists in the state. Currently, therapists must have 600 hours of training before being licensed to practice in the state.

From small towns such as Allentown to Philadelphia and all towns and cities between, massage therapy is going through changes in terms of regulations. Most towns have local requirements for practicing therapists, but students in training may want to meet requirements of national certification to put them inline with future certification requirements in Pennsylvania.