Evanston, Illinous (August 16, 2012) – The American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) consumer awareness program launched this spring entered a new phase August 13, with a special health care focus and targeted advertising. The AMTA Massage Therapy Tour will take its message of massage therapy for health to the Duke University Integrative Medicine Center for Living, with a collaborative health education fair at the Durham, North Carolina center. Meanwhile, the association launches targeted advertising beginning August 13 in six metropolitan areas. This follows a major Tour stop in New York City that reached a total of nearly 1 million people.

On August 18, AMTA and the Duke University Integrative Medicine Center for Living will hold a free educational fair on the health benefits of massage therapy and AMTA volunteers will provide free 5-minute demonstration massages. The emphasis will be on the health benefits of massage to help relieve back pain, and pain from osteoarthritis of the knee, and improving the quality of life in patients with fibromyalgia. Duke Integrative Medicine Center researchers are currently studying the effects of massage on osteoarthritis of the knee and will be on-hand to discuss this major research study taking place at the Center. Initial research at the Center was included in AMTA’s Research Roundup released to news and health care media in May.

On August 13, AMTA’s targeted radio and newspaper advertising began in those areas where the Massage Therapy Tour has visited. Over several weeks, these will include advertising on top radio stations in Chicago, Columbus, Boston, Philadelphia, New York City and Raleigh, as well as print ads in major metropolitan newspapers. Readers will see ads in the Chicago Tribune, the Columbus Dispatch, the Boston Globe, the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Raleigh News & Observer.

Look here to follow both AMTA’s Massage Therapy Tour, media stories resulting from AMTA’s outreach, and to see and hear AMTA’s advertising.

AMTA has made a multi-year commitment to ongoing promotion of massage therapy to consumers as an important part of their health. So far in 2012, the association has released a Research Roundup to media outlets throughout the country, reaching tens of millions; expanded its media relations efforts to engage national and local media to educate the public on the health benefits of massage therapy; launched a direct consumer involvement program with AMTA’s Massage Therapy Tour in the upper Midwest and East coast; and, now expanded advertising in targeted markets. AMTA’s consumer awareness program will continue as the association holds its national convention the first week of October and pick up more momentum with National Massage Therapy Awareness Week October 21-27.

The American Massage Therapy Association is the largest non-profit, professional association serving massage therapists, massage students and massage schools. The association is directed by volunteer leadership and fosters ongoing, direct member-involvement through its 51 chapters. AMTA works to advance the profession through ethics and standards, the promotion of fair and consistent licensing of massage therapists in all states, and public education on the benefits of massage.