Turning a qualification into a career
Massage therapy in New Zealand is an unregulated profession. That means that anybody can set up shop as a Massage Therapist without any qualifications or experience. However, MNZ as the national industry body representing qualified Massage Therapists in New Zealand does not endorse this practice.
People who are unqualified or do not meet the MNZ standards for education or practice are not eligible for membership.
Massage New Zealand does not accredit qualifications. Instead MNZ supports NZQA quality assured qualifications from NZQA accredited education providers. There are a range of NZQA accredited education providers and courses available in New Zealand. MNZ is unable to recommend one NZQA education provider over another.
There are three main levels of undergraduate massage therapy education. An outline is found here.
If you are thinking about a career as a Massage Therapist, have a look at the following web links to inform your decision.
Southern Institute of Technology, Journal of Applied Research, Special Edition, A massage degree and beyond: the jounrey of BTSM graduates
This reports on a survey of NZ bachelor degree graduates who report “that a career in massage therapy appeals to people from a wide range of ages, occupations and qualifications, who are motivated by an interest in health, the body, touch/massage, and who want to work with and help people. Many were quickly employed and were highly satisfied with their careers. Most found their massage therapy career rewarding, and they enjoyed helping people and making a difference. The majority of graduates found employment within the massage industry and most remained in massage therapy practice in New Zealand” (p. 28). A number of graduate stories are also reported on pages 63-90 that show the diversity of jobs that graduates were working in.
CareersNZ : Massage Therapist
This is from the CareersNZ website and it provides some general background information about massage therapy as a job.
A Descriptive Study of the Practice Patterns of Massage New Zealand Massage Therapists
This takes you to a research article that describes the practice patterns of MNZ Massage Therapists. While the data is now a few years old, it is likely that there will be minimal change in practice patterns.
Australian Association of Massage Therapists (AAMT) Student Journal ‘Hands on!’
A great resource for students and future massage therapy students. The Journal for Massage Therapy Students is published by the Australian Association of Massage Therapists. There is a regular column titles “Career Paths”; Issue 10 outlines the career of a New Zealand qualified Massage Therapist.
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