I often cringe when clients or people in general call me a "masseuse" or when I tell them I am a massage therapist I often get "Ohhhh ayyyyy, Do you give HAPPY ENDINGS" (chuckle chuckle). I get even more disgusted when I see video's on Instagram or Facebook of "massage therapists" giving a massage to clients half dressed or in some skimpy outfit with clients in inappropriate positions or inappropriately draped. The kicker for me is when a "therapist" messages me disgusted and distraught as to why they are attracting the perverts and get the unwanted solicitations. Hmmmmm
The history of massage therapy dates back to 3000 BCE (or earlier) in India, where it was considered a sacred system of natural healing. Used by Hindus in Ayurveda “life health” medicine. Massage therapy was a practice passed down through generations to heal injuries, relieve pain, and prevent and cure illnesses.
The term "masseuse" is a French word that refers to a female who practices massage. (Males in the industry were known as masseurs.) However, due to certain unsavory connotations (as well as the need for more gender neutral terminology), both male and female massage practitioners go by the term “massage therapist”.
Let's talk about those connotations.
Previously there were no licensing requirements to give massage as prostitution was considered illegal massage parlors became a convenient cover for sex trafficking and prostitution. Parlors would offer "Full Body" Massage Services to attract their clientele. As sex trafficking has risen, licensing requirements have also increased.
Schooling for Massage Therapy
The minimum amount of schooling hours I have found is 600 hrs including an in depth anatomy & physiology curriculum to understand the importance of providing the best care to clients and understanding the contradictions as well as the indication for the therapeutic benefits of Massage Therapy. I have been a Massage Therapist for almost 14yrs and graduated with 900 clinical hours,and sat for a National Licensing Exam. I have continuous training (CEU Courses) I must maintain to keep my licensure current. This field is constantly evolving and the more in depth education I receive the better I can treat my clients. Understanding the encentric details of how the body works and responds to treatment is what makes me a Massage Therapist I consider myself and others in my field healthcare professionals and why I correct clients or people in general as to my title.