Blog

The Benefits of Career Services

Join Keeton Phillips as he details some of the many services the Soma Institute's Career Services can offer current students and alumni alike. In addition, the Soma Institute's employment page list curated listings to help current students and graduates alike in their job search.






Where Do Clinical Massage Therapists Work?

When you hear the term “clinical massage therapist,” you might very well think, “Oh, they’re a certified masseuse.” Not so fast!, Clinical massage therapists do much more than simply give massages to paying customers.

Clinical massage therapists are trained professionals who employ techniques that help heal muscles and the body as a whole. They possess a working knowledge of muscles and therapy that lesser-qualified people who are practicing massage do not. They typically require education beyond a high school diploma in the form of a training program that prepares them for certification, which is required in most states.

Choosing to pursue a career as a clinical massage therapist can open the doors to working in a number of unique employment settings.

Chiropractic Practices

One of the more common settings where clinical massage therapists find work is within chiropractic care settings. The back and spine are two areas of the body that are crucial to one being able to move and live comfortably. Deep tissue massage and myofascial release therapy are two kinds of treatment frequently performed in chiropractic clinics that clinical massage therapists are qualified to perform on patients.

Clinical massage therapy can be a powerful treatment for back ailments of all kinds, and there are many openings available in chiropractic offices across the county.

Sports Therapy Practices

Massage can play an important role in the maintenance of athletes’ muscles over the course of a season or career. Clinical massage can improve the circulation and range of motion, not to mention increase muscles’ ability to function.

Though the rehabilitation of injuries is one instance in which athletes may seek out clinical massage, it can also help them maintain health and not feel as fatigued in the midst of a competing season. It is also not uncommon for teams to hire clinical massage therapists to work on their athletes to keep them feeling as healthy as they possibly can.

In the similar vein of physical health and athletic wellness, clinical massage therapists can also find themselves employed at recreational facilities such as gyms and health clubs.

Medical Offices

Another setting in which clinical massage therapists are employed is medical offices and facilities. Clinical massage therapy is sometimes referred to as medical massage because, in some instances, patients are prescribed by their doctors to visit them. It might be, as mentioned earlier, part of a rehabilitation treatment for some sort of injury, though clinical massage therapy is also used to relieve pain among people who are experiencing bodily discomfort from chronic conditions or other various causes.

Private Practices and Salons/Spas

Another route for employment for clinical massage therapists who are just starting out is to work in private clinical massage therapy settings. Very rarely does a clinical massage therapist who opens their own practice run their practice and serve all of their clients by performing all of the clinical massage therapy by his or herself. This presents an opportunity for newly minted licensed massage therapists to hone their skills under someone who has been around the block. Alternatively, ambitious clinical massage therapists can attempt to open their own private practices.

Salons and spas also offer clinical massage therapy services and need licensed therapists to perform the therapy on their clientele. This also presents opportunities to clinical massage therapists who are seeking work.

Recap

The potential landing spots for clinical massage therapists are numerous and span a healthy spectrum of choices. That much is obvious. What might not be as obvious is the flexibility afforded to clinical massage therapists with a substantial number of part-time openings available. Holding multiple jobs in different settings can allow a clinical massage therapist to diversify their skills and experiences and ultimately help them learn the setting in which they would most like to work.

If, after reading this, you’ve made the decision that working as a clinical massage therapist is for you, you’ll need to find a training program that meets your needs. Once you’ve figured that out, you can be on your way to beginning your clinical massage therapy education and eventually be licensed in the state where you wish to work.

Commence Your Clinical Massage Therapy Career at Soma

If you live in the Chicagoland area and are looking to start a career in clinical massage therapy, the Soma Institute might be the perfect fit for you.

At the Soma Institute, students learn clinical message therapy from experienced faculty who are well versed in the practice. The Soma Institute is dedicated to providing its students with the personal attention they need to master the art of clinical massage therapy.

The Soma Institute offers its Clinical Massage Therapy Diploma Program in a couple of different scheduling options to best accommodate prospective students. By attending classes two days per week, students can complete the program in 11 months. The alternative is attending classes on one weeknight and Saturday each week, which takes 15 months to complete.

The Soma Institute is proud to offer unique internship options to its students. Students have the opportunity to intern at the school’s on-campus clinic, gaining meaningful experience under the watch of experienced supervisors. The other variety of internship the Soma Institute offers allows students to perform sports massage on NCAA Division I athletes at Loyola University Chicago.

The Soma Institute’s job board is a valuable resource for graduates and graduates-to-be, listing plentiful employment opportunities in clinical massage throughout the Chicagoland area and beyond in a variety of different settings. Students can browse openings in settings such as those discussed in this post and more!

Financial aid is available for those who are eligible. The Soma Institute also offers free tutoring services to its students.

Learn more about the Soma Institute and its programs or to schedule a campus tour by visiting https://soma.edu/ today.






4 Myths About Pain, Pain Receptors and Pain Relief

 

If you’ve been alive for any amount of time (and if you’re reading this, you have been), you’ve felt physical pain at some point in your life. The sensations we know as pain are the results of nerves sending signals to our brains in response to various painful stimuli. Pain perception, which is also referred to as nociception, utilizes neural pathways specifically designed for pain (nociceptors) that spring into action as a reaction to the pain-inducing stimulus.

According to Craig Freudenrich, Ph.D., and contributor to HowStuffWorks, pain is the most prevalent reason people seek attention from physicians and others in the medical establishment. While the circumstances in which people visit doctors to quash their suffering vary from person to person, there are certain notions about the proper handling and thresholds of pain floating freely throughout our society that lack any basis in reality. For this reason, below is a list of five myths and misconceptions about pain, its treatment and the neurological components involved.

It’s in Your Head If Doctors Can’t Diagnose You

Just because a doctor can’t pinpoint a diagnosis doesn’t mean you aren’t feeling pain or that the pain is all in your head. There are many instances in which it can be hard to pinpoint the source of pain, even with the help of modern medical technology. It should be noted that it’s nearly impossible to definitively know all of the stimuli that can trigger the process of nociception.

The human body is a complex, interconnected collection of organs and systems that allow you to function over the course of your lifetime. When one part of your body malfunctions or is afflicted with a disease or pain, the rest of your body makes efforts to compensate for the parts experiencing problems. Additionally, pain in one area is often times indicative of problems in another. For example, people who do not have enough arch support for their feet often experience lower back problems due to their spines being out of the ideal alignment.

This is all to say that if you’re experiencing pain and the underlying cause is not completely obvious, it’s likely that your doctor hasn’t yet found the solution and that there’s more investigative work to be done, as opposed to the cause being nonexistent and all a figment of your imagination.

 Pain Is Part of Aging, and Minor Pains Should Be Ignored

The point of nociception and pain in general is to alert your brain that something is wrong. There would be no point in receiving those signals from your nerves if you weren’t supposed to address the painful stimulus. It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor about any pain you are experiencing because he or she can suggest treatments, prescription or otherwise, to help you manage it, especially if it’s a chronic condition. Even if it’s a minor pain you feel you can live with, there could be an ailment greater than what meets your eye or nociceptor.

Speaking of chronic pain, according to WebMD, older people are more likely to be dishonest about any pain they are experiencing than their younger counterparts. Not addressing one’s pain can be a detriment to one’s quality of life, and given the bounty of treatment methods available for pain, there is most likely a solution available to fit one’s personal needs. Aging doesn’t have to be painful if you’re honest about your pain.

Work Through the Pain to Strengthen Muscles

The old adage is “no pain, no gain,” right? Like any other motivational phrase that gets casually thrown around, context is important. For example, it’s natural to feel some pain and soreness in the days following an intense workout. In that situation, moving around and stretching can feel good and reduce stiffness you may be experiencing. However, it might not be the best thing to attempt your personal squat record on consecutive days because your muscles do, in fact, require rest.

On the other hand, if you’re rehabbing from a debilitating back injury, working your muscles to the point of pain can be detrimental to your recovery. It’s a fine line to walk between progress and pain, but knowing your personal limits can make all the difference in such a rehabilitation situation. Rest and recovery is important for sustaining healthy muscles.

Pain Relievers Will Solve the Problem

While it’s crucial to adhere to your doctor’s instructions when it comes to the use of painkillers, it’s also important to point out that painkillers alone will not solve the causes of pain. They simply make the pain more tolerable. To truly regain one’s health, the underlying cause of the symptoms must be addressed and treated, as opposed to simply treating the symptoms.

Pain relieving medications can be part of the treatment for many ailments, used in conjunction with forms of therapy such as clinical massage therapy and physical therapy. Individuals who practice clinical massage and physical therapy are instrumental to the health, rehabilitation and wellbeing of the patients whose pain they help relieve.

Commence Your Clinical Massage Therapy Career at Soma

If you live in the Chicagoland area and are looking to start a career in clinical massage therapy, the Soma Institute might be the perfect fit for you.

At the Soma Institute, students learn clinical massage therapy from experienced faculty who are well versed in the practice. The Soma Institute is dedicated to providing its students with the personal attention they need to master the art of clinical massage therapy.

The Soma Institute offers its Clinical Massage Therapy Diploma Program in a couple of different scheduling options to best accommodate prospective students. By attending classes two days per week, students can complete the program in 11 months. The alternative is attending classes on one weeknight and Saturday each week, which takes 15 months to complete.

The Soma Institute is proud to offer unique internship options to its students. Students have the opportunity to intern at the school’s on-campus clinic, gaining meaningful experience under the watch of experienced supervisors. The other type of internship the Soma Institute offers allows students to perform sports massage on NCAA Division I athletes at Loyola University Chicago.

Financial aid is available for those who are eligible. The Soma Institute also offers free tutoring services to its students.

Learn more about the Soma Institute and its programs or schedule a campus tour by visiting soma.edu today.






Kinesiology Tape: What It Is, How It Works and Why Use Is Growing

 

You may have noticed college and professional athletes wearing tape, often bright in color, on their arms, legs and other extremities. That’s no ordinary medical tape they’re wearing. It is kinesiology tape, also referred to as kinesio tape, and it’s a light, elastic tape used for pain relief and other health benefits proponents believe it to have.

To understand how kinesiology tape works, it’s important to have a basic grasp of what kinesiology is. In its simplest terms, kinesiology is the study of how our bodies move. Kinesiology is used to identify points of weakness within muscles brought on by a variety of factors. It also employs healing techniques that work in tandem with the body’s natural healing processes.

Kinesiology tape allows those who wear it to feel the muscle movements when they’re competing or training. Proprioception, as it is known, is the awareness of the position of one’s body, which is one of the benefits of wearing kinesiology tape.

Kinesiology tape was invented by Kenzo Kase in 1979, at which time Kase’s clients were primarily sumo wrestlers. Kase has compared kinesiology tape to acupuncture and herbal medicines that the Western world has been slow to adopt.

Why is it popular?

Kinesiology tape has continued to grow in popularity since it first graced the television screens of Americans during the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing, when Kerri Walsh Jennings and her partner, Misty May-Treanor, won the gold medal in women’s beach volleyball. Walsh Jennings was recovering from a torn rotator cuff during the games.

Since then the popularity of kinesiology tape has skyrocketed, being used by athletes all across American professional sports, most visibly in the National Basketball Association. Some NBA teams even employed professionals who are known as Certified Kinesio Taping Practitioners. The tape’s popularity is attributed, at least in part, to the fact that athletes are looking for perceived advantages over the competition.

What’s it made of, and how does it help?

Traditional athletic tape, which is made out of cotton, is designed to stabilize body parts. Kinesiology tape, on the other hand, is infused with elastic polymer strands that provide the wearer flexibility and range of motion in addition to support for the affected muscles.

Using the tape involves adhering it to two anchor points on your skin at either end of the affected area. There is a skill to applying the tape, and it is best to consult a trained physiotherapist on how to do so if possible. The tape should be allowed to dry for at least one hour prior to exposure to water or sweat.

The tape is believed to accelerate healing and blood flow by lifting the skin away from the affected areas. However, claims of physiological effectiveness or advantages relative to traditional athletic tape are largely unfounded on the basis of scientific evidence. It is certainly possible that any benefits brought about by wearing the tape are purely psychological, the result of a substantial placebo effect.

Those who try using the tape are essentially trying it in hopes that it will have a positive effect for them and their bodies, in lieu of any substantial evidence from scientific studies. With that being said, the benefits derived from using kinesiology tape can vary from person to person, and everyone has their own preferences as far as pain management goes.

Kinesiology tape is only part of the treatment.

While using kinesiology tape can be potentially effective in your healing process or help you perform better, it is only part of the treatment process. Other treatment techniques, such as physical therapy and clinical massage therapy, are crucial aspects of rehabilitation in athletes. Your muscles require adequate rest regardless of whether you’re dealing with a muscle ailment or not.

Clinical therapy massage employs natural methods to relieve pain and helps kick-start the regeneration process of muscles. Such massages are performed by certified professionals who have been thoroughly trained in the methods of clinical massage therapy.

Commence your clinical massage therapy career at Soma.

If you live in the Chicagoland area and are looking to start a career in clinical massage therapy, the Soma Institute might be the perfect fit for you.

At the Soma Institute, students learn clinical massage therapy from experienced faculty who are well versed in the practice. The Soma Institute is dedicated to providing its students with the personal attention they need to master the art of clinical massage therapy. Soma’s students receive interactive training to learn the finer points of clinical massage.

The Soma Institute offers its Clinical Massage Therapy Diploma Program in a couple of different scheduling options to best accommodate prospective students. By attending classes two days per week, students can complete the program in 11 months. The alternative is attending classes on one weeknight and Saturday each week, which takes 15 months to complete.

The Soma Institute is proud to offer unique internship options to its students. Students have the opportunity to intern at the school’s on-campus clinic, gaining meaningful experience under the watch of experienced supervisors. The other type of internship the Soma Institute offers allows students to perform sports massage on NCAA Division I athletes at Loyola University Chicago.

Financial aid is available for those who are eligible. The Soma Institute also offers free tutoring services to its students.

Learn more about the Soma Institute and its programs or schedule a campus tour by visiting https://soma.edu/ today.






Massage Makes Me Happy Day

 

Mark your calendar-- March 20, 2018 is Massage Makes Me Happy Day! The MASSAGE MAKES ME HAPPY Initiative of the Global Wellness Institute aims to celebrate the healing powers of massage therapy and promote its benefits through research and education, advocacy and global awareness.

At The Soma Institute, we know that massage makes us and our students happy. We want to spread the word that massage has many therapeutic benefits that can allow people to live happier lives. Help support this initiative by treating yourself to a massage on March 20, and feel happier!

To learn more about the Global Wellness Institute, and Massage Makes Me Happy Day click here.






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