The American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) has claimed 2012 as a successful year, “as it worked to fulfill its mission of serving its members while advancing the massage therapy profession.”

The AMTA is the nation’s largest nonprofit association of massage professionals and students.

Among its accomplishments was the launch of a consumer awareness program, which included the launch of the AMTA Massage Therapy Tour.

“This marked the first direct consumer phase of the multi-year, multi-level commitment by AMTA to raise public awareness of the health benefits of massage therapy and of the professionalism of AMTA members,” noted an AMTA press release.

In August, the association began targeted radio and newspaper advertising in six metropolitan areas where the Massage Therapy Tour had visited.

Also among the AMTA’s notable events of 2012 were:

• AMTA Schools Summit, held in February, included keynote speaker Dr. Geoffrey Bove, who reviewed his investigations into the connection between massage therapy and pain neurobiology, along with other recent research in massage therapy.

• Annual research on the massage therapy profession, released in February, indicated the massage therapy marketplace was showing signs of improvement, with consumers getting more massages, and there were more massage therapists who are making more money per hour than the previous year.

• Ongoing health care relationships, including with the International Research Congress on Integrative Medicine and Health; the Third International Fascia Research Congress; and the Penny George Institute for Health and Healing.

• Promotion of massage research to the media and consumers, which included targeted media efforts to educate the public on the health benefits of massage therapy being supported by new research.

• Consumer survey research, released in October, which showed consumers seek massage for regular health maintenance.

• National Massage Therapy Awareness Week, held in October.

• New teacher training, launched in November, that offers instructors both online training and in-person workshops

• Election of a new national board.

To read more about each accomplishment, click here to read the press release.