For people in nearly any line of work who are looking for success, common advice may be to find a specialty, and for good reason. Professionals who offer a niche service can become the go-to people for a whole segment of the population. Clients and customers who need niche services likely will be looking for someone specifically trained to offer those services.

When it comes to massage therapists and bodyworkers, the same advice holds true—find a niche, and you may find your business booming. However, it is not as simple as picking out a special type of hands-on therapy and getting to work. You will want to make sure the specialty you choose to pursue is one that brings you joy and also one that is viable in your local community.

There is a good chance, if you have been working in the field of touch therapy for a reasonable amount of time, that you may already have an idea of the niche you would like to pursue. Perhaps several of your clients have presented with a certain condition or complaint, and you are driven to get the skills that can truly help them feel better. On the other hand, you may find yourself especially able to connect with and help a specific category of clients, and maybe you wish to find a way to work with this segment of the population more often.

Even if neither of the above scenarios hold true for you, there could be a massage therapy or bodywork modality that has always appealed to you, for whatever reason or no reason at all. As long as you have the desire to pursue a specialty segment of massage therapy and bodywork, there are plenty of ways to go about doing so.

Begin by taking a look at the courses offered by reputable providers of continuing education. Looking at these lists of current classes can help get your mind moving in the direction of future possibilities. As you peruse through the course offerings, pay close attention to your reaction to various courses, as you may discover an innate draw toward certain topics.

You will find the options are basically boundless when it comes to continuing education for massage therapists and bodyworkers. Class topics can range from massage for edema or massage for medically frail patients to structural integration and Thai yoga massage—with many modalities in between.

For those massage therapists and bodyworkers who practice in states and regions where the field is regulated, it may be important to consider any rules or requirements issued by the governing board. That way, those touch therapists who need to rack up continuing education credits in order to maintain their credentials can do so, while at the same time learning skills that can steer their careers toward successful niches in hands-on healing.

Once you are aware of any such requirements, as far as the topic of these classes or specific providers of the continuing education, you can further tailor your search for advanced training.

Brandi Schlossberg