April 27, 2009 // Franchising.com // Dallas, TX–Massage therapist at Massage Envy, Zane King’s change of careers was not forced by the struggling economy. After he lost his sight several years ago, he attended massage therapy school and today works as a licensed massage therapist.

Mr. King and three other therapists who are blind – Diana Alvarez, Bill Thayer and Paul Hughes – work at the Massage Envy clinic in this Dallas suburb. Many of their clients aren’t even aware they are blind.

Mr. King argues that he benefits from not seeing well. “Most of the therapy rooms are dimly lit, so sight is not particularly an advantage,” he said. “Massage therapists who are blind really rely on touch alone, and of course the right touch is the key element in massage therapy.”

Blind massage therapists are part of a growing trend that makes sense. “Once the client is on the massage table, everyone’s body is put together the same way, so you know where all the limbs and muscles are,” says Mr. Thayer. “Blindness isn’t a drawback.”

Some massage schools are even teaching blind technique. The owner of the Massage Envy clinic in Addison, Bruce McGovern, says he’s open to hiring more blind therapists. “These are talented professionals who know what they are doing, and our clients appreciate their skills,” he said.

Client Lee Fuqua says he doesn’t notice that his therapist, Paul Hughes, is blind. “When people lose one of their senses, their other senses are sometimes amplified,” he said. “Paul’s sense of touch is incredible.”

“More Americans are turning to therapeutic massage treatment to relax, relieve tension and pain and ease the daily stresses of their busy lives,” said Lance O’Pry, Dallas/Fort Worth regional developer for Massage Envy clinics, the leading provider of massage therapy in the U.S.

Massage therapy is an easy way to help maintain good health and achieve a balanced lifestyle. Regular massage improves posture and circulation, lowers blood pressure and helps manage pain, relaxes muscles, strengthens the immune system, enhances post-operative rehabilitation, and improves rehabilitation after injury

At Massage Envy, an introductory one-hour massage session (a 50-minute massage and time for consultation and dressing) is just $39. Memberships are available for $49 per month and include a one-hour massage session. Members may also enjoy unlimited additional one-hour massage sessions at the $39 member rate.

Log on to www.massageenvy.com to find the nearest Massage Envy clinic. There are 25 Massage Envy locations throughout the Metroplex and another 3 are scheduled to open soon. All are open seven days per week.

Massage Envy Limited, LLC is a national franchise of massage therapy clinics dedicated to providing professional and affordable therapeutic massage services to consumers with busy lifestyles at convenient times and locations. Founded in 2002, Massage Envy has opened 500 clinics in 38 states in just over five years, with 300 more franchises currently under development from coast to coast and 25 locations in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.