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How to succeed in massage therapy school

Updated on August 1, 2015
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Erin Shelby is passionate about living a lifestyle that aims for financial freedom. She writes about personal finance and other topics.

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If you’ve decided to become a licensed massage therapist, congratulations! You’ve chosen a career path with interesting benefits and possibilities. Succeed in massage therapy school with these tips.

Get in a Group

You may have been an excellent student in the past by yourself, so that’s not to say you can’t be a lone wolf now. However, studying in a group makes things more pleasant and sometimes easier. Find at least one person in your program to be your study buddy so you can share notes, ask each other questions and cheer each other on.

Record Class Lectures

Anatomy and physiology lectures can be challenging even if you already have knowledge of medical terminology. As in any subject, don’t expect to retain the material after hearing it in class just once. Some people are auditory learners, meaning that they learn best by hearing information. If you suspect this may be your learning style, consider purchasing an inexpensive tape recorder so you can replay lectures anytime. Also remember that it’s polite to make sure the instructor has no objection before recording a lecture.

It’s Okay to Color

When you become an LMT – licensed massage therapist – you won’t be just a provider of a luxury service, but you’ll be a professional that clients trust to have knowledge of anatomy and physiology. Your instructor may recommend to you a coloring book, similar to a color-by-number book, to help you learn the names of parts of the body. This may seem juvenile at first, but it’s a trusted tool that many students of LMT programs use. If you decide against the “coloring” method, find a way that will help you remember all the information you’ll be expected to know. Whether it’s color-coding notes, re-writing notes or using another study method, you’ll need to be organized and consistent. Even if material from the assigned reading doesn’t come up in class, be sure to complete it as it may come up on the licensing exam (also known as the state boards).

Anticipate the Boards

Unfortunately, many aspiring LMT’s don’t pass the test the first time. But you can plan to succeed! The best way to pass the boards the first time is to study diligently throughout the program. The state licensing exam is not a test you can cram for. You should continue to study up until the exam and plan your study time wisely. Ask your instructors for advice on areas that are confusing. Pay attention to the elements that you have the least understanding of so you can gain a greater understanding. If you do not pass the first time, reflect on what areas may have caused you to not pass, then study, and take the exam again.

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© 2013 erinshelby


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