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Spa Therapy - the beauty and relaxation treatment to improve the overall well being of the human body, is a kind of holistic treatment for the body, mind and soul. Like many beauty services, massage can also help to improve one's mental health and well-being. This head to toe massage therapy is believed to relieve anxiety, depression, insomnia, arthritis, back problems, stress, exhaustion and vata-related disorders. Spa/ Massage therapy involves beauty treatments, rejuvenation packages, therapeutic cures and even rehabilitation therapies by using warm medicated oils/ creams/ lotions/ gels, aromas, stones, etc.
As life is becoming fast, busy and hectic day-by-day, people are looking for a stress-free lifestyle and are flocking to spas and wellness clinics. This has increased the global value of wellness industry and has boosted up the requirement for professionals in the field. Spa therapy has been practiced since ancient times for its healing properties. It is a good solution to relax and relieve the rising stress, stress-related ailments, anxiety and exhaustion of everyday life.
Spa / massage therapists are professionally qualified practitioners who deliver a variety of therapies and body care treatments such as massage, body wraps, body scrubs, therapeutic baths etc. It is the Spa Therapists, who provide therapeutic benefits to reduce stress, alleviate muscle aches and pains and help to improve the overall well being of their clients. Besides massaging, some therapists provide skin-care and aesthetic services like facials, manicures, pedicures, waxing, makeup, nail treatments, aromatherapy, reflexology, electrotherapy, hydrotherapy etc. A spa therapist help people to relax from their stressful life situations. A good spa therapist should know exactly why a certain spa treatment is given. A therapist should be able to present his/ her expertise in a convincing way to the customer. Before initiating a session, a spa/ massage therapist should learn each client's medical history and any physical conditions they need to pay special attention to or avoid.
Spa/ Message therapy is a mini hospitality industry with plethora of career options. It is a career that offers tremendous growth potential along with good pay package, stress-free work environment and opportunities to work abroad.
Spa education helps one to develop their healing skills and offer a wide range of job and business opportunities to students. There is no specific educational qualification required to enter into this profession. These courses train students with skills necessary to provide the best in massage and spa therapy by making them aware about the basic physiology and anatomy of the human body.
Several institutes in India, especially in Kerala offer professional courses in massage and spa therapy, ranging from short term certificate course, diploma to post graduate diploma courses and more. Aspiring candidates after 10 +2 can do Diploma/ Certificate courses and can become a spa therapist. The duration of these courses vary with the institute, which is from 1 month to 6 months. In some institutes, these courses are offered for a short-term period of 15 days to 1 month.
Graduate and Diploma holders with interpersonal skills can do Post Graduate Diploma in Spa Therapy and Master Diploma in Spa Management. International School of Aesthetics and Spa (ISAS), Pune (Maharashtra) offers one year Post Graduate Diploma in Spa Therapy. Ispaa Spa Academy, Kochi (Kerala), Puretouch Spa Academy, Ernakulam (Kerala) offers short term Masters Diploma in Spa Management. This program helps students to obtain advance knowledge on how to set up and manage a successful spa business or to work as a spa manager. One can also do a professional course in spa therapy and acquire an international certification from CIBTAC or ITEC. One such institute in India that offers courses in this field is Ananda Spa Institute, Hyderabad. Online course facilitates are also offered in spa therapy with contact classes, lectures through video conferencing and anytime online assistance. OSA elearn, Jaipur (Rajasthan) and Puretouch Spa Academy, Ernakulam (Kerala) offers 1-year online spa therapy course.
Besides the spa therapy qualification, having an associate or bachelor's degree in Complimentary / alternative Health Care like acupressure, acupuncture, shiatsu, chiropractic, yoga or ayurveda will be an additional advantage in this field. One can also choose additional courses in nutrition, personal training, etc. Minimum desired qualification for these courses is 12th pass.
Course Structure : Spa and massage therapy course imparts the students with knowledge in basic physiology, human anatomy, and training to identify different types of body forms and its imperfections. It also deals with various massage techniques. So they can learn how to heal or rectify various health conditions through massage.
By studying this program students will also learn to do cellulite treatments, administer heat therapy, body wraps, mud wraps, body polishes and salt exfoliation. They will also gain experience in trigger movements, petrissage (massage technique with deep applied pressure to compress the underlying muscles), effleurage (massage technique with circular stroking moments), tapping and sensory massage. The basics of sanitation and sterilization, Swedish or Balinese massage techniques, reflexology, muscle stimulation, remedial exercises and different techniques of massage, hydro therapy, stone therapy, aromatherapy or even beauty treatments are also covered in these programs.
Skills required for Spa Therapist
Patience, physical fitness, ready hands, dedication, concentration, open mind and desire to help others in the best possible way, are some of the essential skills required for a Spa / Massage therapist. They should have good time management and excellent communication and listening skills. They must have the knowledge and skill to give different massages professionally. A knowledge about human anatomy, body type, muscles and joints, different kinds of massages and oils, social etiquettes, cultural norms and practices, basic qualification in beauty treatment / massage is also essential for a Spa Therapist. Spa therapist should also be well aware of health and safety measures, aware of the need for client confidentiality.
As spa is a relaxing asylum for people, Spa therapist should be able to create a relaxing atmosphere, maintain serenity and remain calm under pressure. Spa Therapists should possess professional attitude, and have to be consummate professional at all times. They should have a flawless appearance; dress and talk smart, should provide excellent customer service and follow good personal hygiene. They should maintain their equipments well, and the treatment area should be kept thoroughly clean.
Spa and massage professionals have enormous opportunities in India and abroad. Demand for fully trained spa / massage professionals has been on the rise over the years, as many clubs and hotels prefer to include massage and spa therapy, for ultimate customer satisfaction. A spa therapist provide various spa skin care treatments as well, like aromatic and revitalizing facial, make-up, manicures, pedicures, waxing, back cleansing, massage, body wraps, body scrubs and reflexology. One could work as a spa therapist, spa manager, spa consultant, spa trainers, spa product consultants and demonstrator, masseur and manicurist and pedicurist.
A Spa / Massage therapist kneads, pushes and pulls, muscles and soft tissues and applies finger and hand pressure as necessary, to treat the client. They work to improve muscle and soft tissue form and function, and in turn can affect muscle strength, joint health and comfort. Therapists concentrate on working out the muscles of each client's specific discomfort area. They customize their treatment for each and every client based on the person's goals, ailments, medical history, and stress or pain-related problems.
Trained spa therapists can find jobs in a variety of spa settings like day spa, resort spa, medi-spa, cruises/ship spa, club spa etc. Many luxury hotels, hospitals, beauty salons, fitness centers/ health clubs, sports clinics, slimming clinics, airlines, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, corporate offices and Ayurvedic clinics offering massage facilities, recruit spa therapists. One can enter this career by working as an apprentice in a spa or salon under qualified therapists and acquire on-the-job training. After gaining experience, they can progress to Spa manager, Spa supervisor, Spa consultant, Spa trainer etc.
Spa therapists can work as a team with other health care professionals such as nutritionists to start multidisciplinary clinics, where all sorts of alternative health care can be availed. Here they can work on a commission basis. Spa business could be launched with least minimum expenses and can earn great profit. Most therapists are self-employed and they may work out of their homes, out of their own offices, or even in the client's home. Skilled and trained persons with knowledge in stone therapy, foot reflexology, aesthetics, technicians that beautify nails, cosmetologists and other experts who specialize in beauty treatment etc. can also work in spa and beauty therapy industries.
Most spa therapists are full-time professionals who work for about 8-10 hours (a maximum of 60 hours per week). They are found to be busy in the evenings and weekends than in the mornings. As their working hours involve long periods of standing and bending, excellent stamina is essential for a spa therapist. Some therapists practice part time, and can work for flexible hours, usually less than ten hours a week.
Spa therapy is all about customer satisfaction and one can earn name and reputation in the field on the basis of the number of clients. The remuneration of spa therapists mainly depends on factors such as experience, qualifications, location and type of practice. In the beginning, a fresh Graduate Spa therapist can earn a monthly salary in the range of Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 14,000 approximately. Experienced persons can earn upto Rs. 20,000 per month. Those progresses to management position can earn Rs. 30,000 to 80,000 per month or more. After few years of experience they can earn upto Rs.1 lakhs per month. Spa therapists with own clinics usually earn a good income than those working on hourly wages. The Spa therapists with good reputation can get number of clients on a day-to-day basis and they can achieve good profits.
List of Institutes conducting Spa / Massage Therapy courses
Tagscareer in alternative medicine , beauty care career , massage therapy
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