Massage Therapy

What Goes into Designing a Treatment Plan: A Guide for Massage Therapy School Students

April 29, 2022

With massage therapy becoming more widely recognized within Western culture, it’s never been a better time to pursue a career as a massage therapist. Massage is an effective method of treatment for injury, in addition to being a great way to improve one’s overall health. As a massage therapist, you’ll be helping to enhance the health or recovery of your clients according to their specific goals, expectations and needs. The best way to ensure that your clients receive effective care is by developing a personalized treatment plan. 

Designing a treatment plan is an important step in the care of any client, ensuring that their treatment is targeted toward the outcome they’re looking for. Putting together treatment plans is also important for the success of your massage therapy business as you promote client retention and attract new clients. However, when designing a treatment plan, there are a few important factors to remember. Below, learn more about creating treatment plans and why they’re important. 

After Massage Therapy School, Start by Determining Your Client’s Goals

When it comes to creating a treatment plan after massage therapy training, the first step should be to determine your client’s goals. While you may have your own professional opinion about how your client could benefit from massage therapy, taking their personal preferences into account is just as important. 

Ask your client why they’re seeking out massage therapy, and determine the primary complaint. Some clients may be stressed and looking to massage therapy as a way to promote relaxation, while others may be interested in reducing the amount of pain they’re experiencing. Additionally, you can ask your clients whether there are overall improvements in their health or well-being that they’d like to see and take these into account.

After massage therapy training, determine your client’s goals before creating a treatment plan

Begin Creating a Therapeutic Treatment Plan

Once you’ve learned what your client’s goals are, you can begin to develop a therapeutic treatment plan that works for them. Consider factors like the length and frequency of each session, what modality you’ll be using and how long it should take to achieve the desired results. For example, clients looking for stress relief may benefit from Swedish massage, while Deep Tissue massage may be better suited for those with chronic pain. You can document this plan using a template that includes the goal and details of the plan, sharing it with your client to ensure transparency. When your client knows that each session is contributing to their improvement, they’ll be more likely to see their treatment plan to the end.

Include a Self Care Component

As a massage therapy school graduate, another important thing to note about treatment plans is that they should include a self-care component. In addition to the work you do with your clients during sessions, it’s also important that they begin a routine at home to support their treatment. Without a home care component, it’s likely that a client’s treatment plan will take longer, or will be less effective. When creating a treatment plan for a client, include a detailed guide for practices or routines they should adopt in between sessions. For clients suffering from chronic pain, this may include certain stretches or the application of heat, while stressed clients may benefit from walking or meditation.

Make sure a client’s treatment plan includes a self-care component

Why Designing an Effective Treatment Plan Is Important

Effective treatment plans are not only important for the health of your client, but for your own business as well. Treatment plans provide a map to recovery, helping clients to understand the why and how of massage therapy. When clients are able to visualize their progress in achieving their health goals, they are more likely to keep coming back for sessions, and even recommend your services to their friends and family. Given their many benefits, it’s important to begin implementing treatment plans with each and every client during your career as a massage therapist.

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