Make the most of your next continuing education experience by choosing your class wisely and taking it with the intention of getting the most bang for your buck. In other words, make sure to take some time to truly think about your ideal continuing education experience and strive to make the experience happen.

No one wants to spend time and money taking a continuing education class that feels like a burden, placing a strain on one’s budget, schedule or some other facet of life as a busy massage therapist or bodyworker. That is why a bit of observation can come in handy when finding the right continuing education class.

One of the first areas to observe and explore should be whether there are any weak points in your practice. A weak point is typically a skill or technique you find yourself wishing you had, either in the session room or in terms of running your business. For example, you may find yourself seeing quite a few clients with a specific type of sports injury, such as tennis elbow. If you are not quite sure whether you are providing these clients with the best possible massage therapy or bodywork for this specific injury, then a course on proper techniques for easing tennis elbow might be your best bet.

As another example, you might feel like you offer some of the best massage therapy or bodywork services in your community, but you just aren’t seeing the number of clients you need to see in order to run a profitable practice. In this case, the weak point might be your marketing plan, which would point toward taking a continuing education class all about marketing for massage therapists and bodyworkers.

Once you have determined the most pressing weak point in your practice, the next area to think about would be the most efficient learning method for you. Certain people need to be able to see what they are learning in order to truly absorb and understand the lesson at hand, whereas other people seem to do just fine either reading or hearing the material.

Your preferred learning method may also depend on the type of continuing education class you are planning to take. There are some people who believe an in-person continuing education class is best for learning actual hands-on techniques and modalities, but an online class is just fine for studying more business-oriented topics, such as marketing or accounting.

A couple other factors that could play into the way you choose to take continuing education classes might be your budget and schedule. For those massage therapists and bodyworkers who are on a tight budget or incredibly busy, either with clients, personal obligations or both, a continuing education class that is offered online could be the solution.

In general, online continuing education classes tend to be a bit less expensive, and you can find online continuing education classes that are a bit more flexible as well, in terms of when you “attend” the class from your home or office computer.