Hands-On Learning: Massage Therapy Students Give Back to Community

As we all know and can attest to, “practice makes perfect.” Whether you’re studying for an upcoming exam or trying to master that new song on the violin, the more hours you put into practicing, the better your end results.

It is this motto that the massage therapy program students at Globe University understand to the fullest extent. Students in the massage therapy program not only receive a top notch education, but they also receive over 150 hours of hands-on clinical experience. Whether it’s applying their skills in the classroom or honing their trade through a service learning project, students from the massage therapy program continue to strive to gain valuable experience to make them stand out in the world of massage.

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Samantha Leis (left) and April Jund (right) next to their massage chairs prior to the Radiation Technician Appreciation event.

The massage therapy program at Globe University-Eau Claire focuses on many different areas of massage including: Swedish Massage, Chair Massage, Hot Stone Massage, Spa Techniques, Thai Massage and Sports Massage. Along with classroom instruction and simulation, students get the opportunity to practice massage techniques on community members and fellow students and faculty.

One of the ways that students in the massage program exercise their skills is through offering chair massages for the campus and Eau Claire, Wis., community. Chair massages help students’ practice their compression and basic chair massage skills that they learn in the classroom.

Eric Willmarth, Massage Therapy Instructor at Globe University-Eau Claire and Owner of Chippewa Valley Therapeutic Massage, mentions the benefits of offering chair massages, “It allows the students to refine their massage and communication skills in a real-world setting; in addition, they get to interact with potential clients. Being successful in the massage world requires one to build their clientele and offering chair massages allows students to network with others in the community which will assist them in their future careers.”

Throughout the month of November, the Massage program offered various opportunities for chair massages to the community. Globe University students volunteered their time at Radiation Technician Appreciation Day at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire. This event allowed the students to practice their massage techniques on potential clients, in turn helping to get their name out in the community.

Massage therapy program student, April Jund, performing a chair massage on her client to reinforce her chair massage techniques acquired in the classroom.

At the event, the students set up shop in an open conference room, and played soothing music to help set a relaxing environment. The students started by assessing each client’s needs and asked what areas were tense. After the initial assessment, the students performed 15-minute chair massages to staff in the radiation department.

April Jund, massage therapy student, stated her thoughts on offering chair massages. “A lot of individuals don’t understand the full benefits of massage therapy; offering chair massages to the community allows potential clients to get a taste of a massage if they have never had one before.” April plans to run her own Massage practice after graduation, focusing on deep tissue massages.

In addition to attending the radiation technician event, massage therapy students participate at many community events through the year and offer chair massages on campus to gain more experience.

Samantha Leis, massage therapy student, enjoys offering chair massages to the community. She added, “It’s a great way to improve your communication skills with customers and to get your name out there.” Samantha aspires to own her own spa after graduation that focuses on a variety of massage techniques.

Hands-on learning, especially as part of our massage therapy program, is an important aspect of the learning process at Globe University. It assists our students with obtaining tangible skills that they can utilize after graduation in their future career.

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