While working a corporate job, I attended Baltimore School of Massage from 2008 – 2009. As Office Manager of a highly successful IT firm, this allowed me access to some great connections. I’ve always had side businesses even while working for others. I had a Virtual Assistant business in 2006, and during my time in corporate, I prepared and maintained expense reports for managers and executives. I’m basically a Jill of All Trades.
During my time as a Virtual Assistant, I learned how to create websites, design book covers, and worked in e-publishing for six years. This opened the door for cover art gigs.
Upon graduating massage school, some of my corporate clients became massage clients. The IT firm I worked for was located in Columbia, MD and we had visitors from other locations such as PA, VA, and Rockville, MD. Well, thanks to word of mouth, my business has thrived. Many of the people I assisted in corporate branched off and opened their own small businesses or became partners. This was a great opportunity for chair massage jobs with small businesses and I was able to quit corporate.
The same year I started my business, I worked in a spa just to gain some knowledge in my field.
It was a habit of mine to comfort family members with shoulder massages whenever they complained of a stiff neck or back. It felt great to know I was helping to alleviate their pain. Giving massage is a healing form of meditation for not only myself, but the person receiving massage. It puts me in a Zen-like state of mind.
As a massage therapist, it is my job to educate those seeking massage therapy. Sometimes massage isn’t for people who are on certain medications, have had surgery, or have certain illnesses. This is called a contraindication. A good example would be if a person has deep vein thrombosis. They should pass on massage because there is a risk of blood clots being released during massage and traveling to the lungs.
Varicose Veins – Areas where veins are protruding should be avoided at all costs. A few times in my career, I’ve had to forego massaging hamstrings or quadriceps because the client had so many varicose veins in those areas.
Osteoporosis – I do have some clients with Osteo, however; it is very minor. In severe and moderate stages, one should pass because massage can cause the bones to break.
Before I take on clients, I have them fill out a client intake form and check off any diseases, illnesses, or surgeries they’ve had. There are times when I need to have a doctor’s signature before I can start massage on a client. Sometimes I must turn folks down and they become a little upset or angry and although I explain the reasons why, some refuse to take my advice.
Advice for aspiring entrepreneurs:
If you’re working a regular job, make sure you have a side business going. I enjoy encouraging people in starting their own business. It’s a big luxury. Be prepared to work 7 days a week in your business. In addition to being a massage therapist, I’m also a personal trainer, so there is a lot of paperwork to do.
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