Massage therapists reduce pain and promote overall health by manipulating muscles and soft tissues in the body. This relaxes tight muscles, improves circulation, and reduces stress. Many massage therapists work as general practitioners, but many therapists also choose massage therapist jobs that focus on one of the numerous specializations in massage therapy. These specialized massage therapist jobs include areas such as sports therapy, aromatherapy, pregnancy massage, and reflexology.
Massage therapist jobs in sports therapy can be found at universities, professional sports locker rooms, gyms, and anywhere else clients are interested in massage therapy tied to exercise. These practitioners spend a lot of time working on muscles that are strenuously trained and with proper care from a professional therapist, athletes can even improve performance. This is one of the more rigorous of the massage therapist jobs though, so therapists should plan on being in the fittest condition possible if they wish to pursue this specialization.
Aromatherapy massage therapist jobs lean more on the relaxing and stress reducing side of the practice. Massage techniques are focused on overall relaxation or energizing, as opposed to a sports therapist who concentrates on individual muscles. The idea behind aromatherapy is that the smell of concentrated oils will produce positive psychological and physical effects. For instance, a massage therapist might put something relaxing such as lavender in the massage oil to treat a client suffering from excessive stress.
Pregnancy massage is, obviously, for pregnant women. This type of massage uses techniques that help women in several areas during pregnancy. It eases the aches and pains associated with the additional weight they are carrying, reduces stress, reduces swelling by increasing blood and lymph circulation, and it can also ease labor pain. Pregnancy massage therapists work with women at all stages of pregnancy, from the first few months of pregnancy all the way through the postpartum months.
Another popular area of massage therapy is reflexology. This type of massage is done on the feet and the techniques used are gentle and non-invasive. The idea behind reflexology is that by applying pressure to certain areas of the foot, called reflex points, the practitioner is able to connect to corresponding areas on the body. By manipulating these reflex points, the practitioner attempts to create a positive healing effect on a particular organ or area of the body. This is used to reduce pain and treat clients with ailments such as arthritis and migraines.