There are so many benefits to taking continuing education classes as a professional massage therapist or bodyworker, it is no wonder this extended learning is popular among practitioners. Even in areas where professional touch therapists may not be required to earn continuing education credits, many of the most successful and savvy massage therapists and bodyworkers continue to sign up to receive the benefits that come from continuing education.

First and foremost is the obvious benefit of increasing one’s knowledge and skill level through continuing education classes—and this is not a small benefit. The opportunity to keep learning about new aspects of the broad and diverse field of touch therapy is a great gift for those who have chosen this career path. Continuing education classes can help teach massage therapists and bodyworkers new ways to better serve specific clients, which in turn can mean more clients and a bigger bottom line.

Learning a new or more advanced modality through continuing education classes also gives massage therapists and bodyworkers the option of steering their careers in different directions, and expanding their practices by adding new options to the menu of services. Along these same lines, the various skills picked up through continuing education courses can make a massage therapist or bodyworker more appealing to potential employers, such as high-end spas and resorts or doctors’ offices and medical clinics.

Again, the wider and more advanced range of knowledge that massage therapists and bodyworkers can gain through continuing education classes often equates with more earning power, whether one is working in a stand-alone practice or as an employee of a larger operation.

It is fairly easy to see how continuing education classes can benefit practitioners in terms of providing massage therapists and bodyworkers with the knowledge and skills to offer increased client service and satisfaction, which in turn, can lead to career advancement and monetary gain. These are some pretty big benefits, but the perks of continuing education classes do not stop there.

Another upside of enrolling in continuing education classes for massage therapists and bodyworkers is the opportunity these classes can provide for networking with peers and colleagues. This may not seem like much, but in a profession where the majority of people spend their time in quiet, secluded session rooms, the chance to socialize and get to know others in the same line of work can be a real boon to the busy practitioner.

As you get to know classmates and study partners within your continuing education course, you will likely begin swapping stories and tips, sharing ideas and dreams, and generally discussing what it is like to be a massage therapist or bodyworker. The benefits of such support and sharing among peers and colleagues can be subtle, but still powerful.

For those practitioners who enroll in on-site and in-person continuing education classes, where the course is focused on hands-on skills, continuing education can also provide the benefit of some time on the table, rather than standing above it. Many of these continuing education classes will require students to log practice hours, which can mean trading blissful time on the table with your fellow students.

–Brandi Schlossberg