Massage Therapy Classes
Swedish Massage (125 hours)
Swedish Massage is the foundation of massage techniques and complements all other massage treatments. In this class, our students learn Ke Kino’s unique full-body Swedish massage sequence. This sequence is powerful when performed on its own, but also gives our students a framework into which they may choose to integrate various other skills acquired in the course of their schooling and for the rest of their careers.
Performing hands-on practice, the student will learn client draping techniques and soft tissue manipulation using a variety of strokes as well as range of motion. The students gain proficiency using our proven Swedish massage sequence with an emphasis on body mechanics. Throughout the Swedish massage course, students increase their knowledge of anatomy while improving palpation skills, and will also become skilled in interviewing clients and interpreting health history forms to interface with other healthcare providers. This course also covers the history of massage, contraindications to massage, and the importance of massage for a touch-starved world.
Our approach teaches students to be precise and thorough in soft tissue manipulation, while cultivating mindfulness regarding the interconnectedness of the body, mind, and spirit of the client. Initially, students practice massaging each other, starting with the feet and progressing part-by-part until they have learned the full body sequence. Once a student has completed their Swedish Massage coursework, they are eligible to begin working in the intern clinic.
Trigger Point & Fascial Therapy (45 hours)
It is currently estimated that at some point in their lives approximately 90% of all Americans will experience some sort of myofascial pain with root tensions in the body that lead to a loss of function in the musculoskeletal system. In this class, students learn about the human fascial system, how to palpate and assess specific tissue quality and discern a client’s needs in doing so. Students then learn hands-on techniques to release these fascial tensions and help the body to relax and self-correct.
Muscle Energy Techniques (18 hours)
MET employs the client’s own muscular movement and resistance to achieve changes in soft tissues. In this modality, specific muscular imbalances – overdevelopment, compensation patterns, or overuse, to name a few – are identified and corrected. Students will emerge with an understanding of proprioception and neuromuscular interaction, allowing them to facilitate substantial changes for their clients. MET differs from other modalities in that it takes into consideration that a chronic area of tightness or imbalance produces an equally deactivated or weak area, and then addresses that problem. When MET is applied, it’s like turning on a light switch where areas that were turned off are turned back on, and the body is brought back to a more functional state.
Introduction to Pregnancy Massage ( 6 hours)
A woman’s body experiences tremendous changes through the pregnancy and childbirth journey. These changes are known to be physically taxing, stressful, uncomfortable, and can easily stir up and exacerbate existing dysfunction or imbalances in the body. Receiving therapeutic massage during pregnancy can be extremely supportive both physically and emotionally in preparing a woman to go through the process of becoming a mother. These clients require therapists with specific knowledge, who are familiar with the stages a woman’s body goes through during this time, and who are nurturing, but unafraid to provide care to this special population of clients. In this class you will learn about the processes and changes a woman experiences during the stages of her pregnancy, special considerations for pregnant clients, how to position them for optimal comfort and safety, and a modified massage sequence designed specifically for this population. This class will prepare students to provide relaxing, nurturing massage to women experiencing a normally progressing pregnancy.
Chair Massage (6 hours)
Chair massage involves treating clients in a seated position and is often used to introduce people to massage by making it safe, affordable, and available to anyone, anytime, anywhere. Chair massage is an invaluable marketing tool and can be a standalone source of income as well. Massage therapists bring chair massage to every possible venue from airports to dentist offices. It is as versatile as your imagination. Because chair massage puts clients in a seated position, therapists have access to a body that is subject to forces of gravity, which often gives them a different perspective on a client’s condition than they would have were the client on a table. Research has shown that chair massage in the workplace can increase cognitive function while producing a significant decrease in tension and stress. In this class, we’ll explore a variety of chair massage techniques and correct body mechanics that allow the therapist to deliver a massage that is beneficial to the client while protecting the therapist’s body. Students learn a thorough 15-minute sequence that will address areas of tension using forearms, knuckles, the heel of the hand, and thumbs.
Human Anatomy and Physiology (50 hours and 25 hours)
Pehr Henrik Ling, the founder of Swedish massage said, “We ought not to consider the organs of the body as the lifeless forms of a mechanical mass, but as the living, active instruments of the soul.” In Anatomy and Physiology, we consider not only the structure and mechanics of each system, but also their function, their connection to other structures/systems and their environment, and the positive impact touch may have on it. We separate systems in order to discuss and learn about them, yet maintain an understanding that we are never speaking about these parts as isolated entities, as everything in the body is connected. The systems covered include the muscular, skeletal, integumentary, cardiovascular, lymphatic, digestive, urinary, respiratory, nervous, and endocrine systems.
Kinesiology (50 hours)
Kinesiology is the study of the physiological, biomechanical, and psychological dynamic principles and mechanisms of human movement. Students learn muscle structure and function including origins, insertions, and actions, as well as joint types, muscular movement, and posture analysis.
Pathology (40 hours)
Throughout their careers, massage therapists are inevitably confronted with medical conditions that they have never seen or only vaguely heard about. They also need to be very familiar with the conditions they see on a regular basis, and especially those that could have potential for adverse effects from receiving massage. Because they have a specialized understanding of how massage affects the body, it is the responsibility of every massage therapist to know when bodywork can be helpful, when a client requires modifications or precautions, when physician’s approval is required, when a client needs to be referred to a different practitioner, or when a client should not receive bodywork at all. In this class, students learn to make decisions quickly and accurately about whether or not massage is appropriate for a client, and how to proceed in cases where it is not.
Hydrotherapy (20 hours)
In this class, students learn the theory behind the use of water of various temperatures, in solid, liquid, and gaseous forms, and its practical use for cleansing and revitalizing therapeutic effects. Students will learn the specific contraindications and physiological effects of the various hydrotherapy techniques, which include dry brushing, herbal wrap, hot and cold applications, and contrast baths. This class frequently includes a field trip to a day spa or day of pampering each other on site, decided by the class as a group.
Health and Hygiene (20 hours)
The Health and Hygiene class covers various topics related to the practical aspects of working as a massage therapist, including stress management, various self-care techniques, human relationships, universal precautions, sanitary conditions, personal hygiene, and therapeutic exercise. Students will also receive their Red Cross First Aid and CPR certification during this course.
Business Practices & Ethics (45 hours)
Most people enter the field of massage therapy because they want to help people, not because they intend to be small business owners, and yet knowing the ins and outs of running a small business becomes imperative for most massage therapists at some point in their careers. In this class, local and state laws, business organizational structures, and tax laws are covered as they pertain to practicing massage therapy in Texas. Various career paths are explored, helping students envision and plan what direction they might follow or forge. Students put together and present a business plan to the class that includes their career path, professional goals, marketing materials, and a financial plan. Job acquisition skills such as resume and interviewing are examined and practiced through practice and role-playing scenarios.
Internship Program (50 hours)
During their internship, students function as massage therapists in a supervised, supportive environment; making appointments, taking client’s health histories, and performing the massage techniques they have learned in their coursework with real, paying clients. Each student is required to perform 50 hours of massage therapy in the intern clinic to satisfy their licensing requirements and has the option of extending their internship by up to an additional 50 hours by invitation or on the recommendation of their instructors. Session notes will be reviewed and critiqued by the Clinic Supervisor, and feedback given as needed. Discussions with the Clinic Supervisor will include topics such as SOAP notes, technique application, client responses, and other matters pertaining to the internship experience. This gives students the opportunity to experience realistic challenges, and with support, increases a student’s confidence and decision-making abilities. The internship is an extremely useful preparation for becoming a massage therapist, as we learn best by doing. All students are strongly encouraged to seek out and make requests for mentorship within the Ke Kino organization, whether that’s from their instructors or from licensed therapists in our advanced clinic, to support them in completing their internship and help them to integrate whatever knowledge that experience has to offer them.
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