Turning Iron into Jelly: Students Provide Sports Massage During Ironman

Volunteering to gain real world experience is something Globe University-Madison West students love to do. So it’s no surprise to discover Globe massage therapy program students at this year’s Ironman Wisconsin race.

Massage therapy students Stephanie Felts, Vicki Meier and Ariel Sigg immersed themselves in sports massage therapy when they volunteered at the Ironman Wisconsin competition. Their program chair, Jessica Boggs, and Globe alumnae, Theresa Martin and Kathyrn Olsen, joined them.

massage therapy program

Vicki Meier works on one of many Ironman finishers. Our massage students were on hand until the late evening hours as the race officially ended at midnight.

The Ironman Wisconsin is just one of the hundred international races organized by the World Triathlon Corporation. This year marked the 11th time the race was hosted in Madison, Wis. Professional and avid athletes swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles and then run 26.2 miles. With more than 2,500 athletes participating this year, it provided great experience for Globe massage students.

“I’m volunteering tonight so I can get some hands-on experience with sports massage and put everything I learned in a real life fashion,” said Stephanie Felts, a student in the massage therapy program. “I’ve never done it before and it made sense to volunteer because while we have class, that class only allows a certain amount of stuff to happen. Tonight, we have the chance to work with real athletes. I hope to make them feel good and hopefully help speed their recovery time.”

massage therapy school, Wisconsin Ironman

Stephanie Felts focuses her client’s feet. After running 26.2 miles, they need attention.

Students assessed each client by asking which areas needed the most attention. The top requests were work on shoulders, quads and feet. Ironman finishers were so grateful for the free massage.

“I feel great, I feel like a million bucks,” Stephanie, an Ironman finisher, responded. “It’s really good that you guys are out there, because it really aids in the recovery getting all that junk out and moved around right away after the race.”

massage therapy, sports massage

One common request from finishers was massage for the neck and shoulders. Massage therapy students Ariel Sigg and Vicki Meier focus on those areas.

“Deborah did a good job, stretching and getting me to recover with massage,” said Paul, another finisher. “Massage is excellent and does a wonderful job; I should do more of it. She was enthusiastic and knowledgeable and she did a great job. I really appreciate it.”

This experience was a first for massage therapy student Ariel Sigg, and she hopes it will not be her last.

“I really enjoyed it,” Ariel said. “I’m glad I did this because it’s more practice for me and I’m gaining more techniques. I did have the challenge of clients asking for more deep pressure and I felt like I was doing that, and they kept asking for me to go deeper. So I just really need to practice on that. This was really fun and I’m thinking of doing this again next year.”

Do you have a passion for helping people heal? Do you love to learn in an environment that brings real life experiences to you? Globe University-Madison West’s massage therapy school could be for you. Check it out!