June 1989 - January 2001 - Worked in nursing homes, group homes, treatment centers and others.
January 1998 to October 1999 - Worked as a massage therapist in a spa, health club, private practice and out of someone’s garage (they made it into a clinic).
October 1999 to March 2001 - Owned my own massage business
January 2001 - Started teaching Massage Therapy
June 2001 - Started making massage ebooks
October 2005 - Started making massage videos
January 2006 - Started MassageNerd.com
Why I Started this website
I've been so frustrated with the same techniques over and over. Then I decided to think outside the massage table (No pun intended) and create different techniques. So that is how Massage Nerd was developed!
So many therapists get in a routine and perform the same techniques over and over (No wonder there is such a turn-over for massage therapists). I don't want to see that happen as much and I'm willing to give you all my knowledge from 1997-present. We cater to the beginning, intermediate and advanced massage therapists. Our information will help you go beyond your current styles of massage (And help you find your true FASCIA).
I have been giving the e-books to my students and selling them on ebay since March 2004 and I have found it very successful and rewarding. Therapists that have been in the field for many years have commented!
There is just not one way to perform a style of Massage; that is why we have the opportunity to be creative and different (Lets all palpate nicely and nobody will bruise).
Everybody's perception of massage is a little different, so mix it up and give Massage Nerd a try.
“A.K.A. Male Massage Therapist”
Since 1989 I have been in the health field; from working in nursing homes, group homes, clinics and other heath related places. I loved what I did, but I knew there was something missing in my career. In 1996 my mom talked to me about being a massage therapist, I laughed at first but I soon realized that it was a profession to help people. I finally enrolled in a massage school in 1997 (you always have to listen to your mom). My first day of class there were 15 students and there was only me and another male student. I finally felt like I was someone when I started massage school and I was always thinking outside of the table (no pun intended). Halfway through my first class the other male student dropped out and then there was just me. It didn’t bother me at all, because most of my past jobs there were very few males.
The schooling experience…
After my first class I enrolled in the full program and it was a very special class, because there were only 2 other people in most of my classes. I loved the hands on classes, but then I realized that there were lecture classes…a lot of them. There was Anatomy, Kinesiology, Business, Ethics and more. It was hard to comprehend that I had to take so much lecture classes for a hands-on profession, but I made it work. The only class I struggled in was kinesiology, but I mastered that once I just accepted it was all about memorization (I was looking into it too much). My biggest hang-up during school was being comfortable enough to massage the opposite sex; I know it sounds weird, but I wanted to make sure they felt comfortable and I would go above and beyond with asking them questions. After massage school I felt more relaxed about the opposite sex and I treated everyone equal.
Employment while in school…
I worked in a nursing home as a nursing assistant and a trained medication aid; also I got a part-time job at a spa working as a massage therapist. It was o.k. being a male in a spa that catered to people from outside of Minnesota and some from outside of the United States. I started at $8 an hour guaranteed, plus tips; I know that it wasn’t much, but I was going to school at that time and experience is everything when you need bodies to practice on. Most of the clients did not request a female therapist and I was expecting to not be busy because of horror stories in school about males trying to make a living in a spa setting.
Employment after school…
I stayed at a nursing home part-time while I worked at a health club and I also worked out of someone’s garage as a massage therapist (the place was a lot prettier than it sounds and they made it into a professional massage clinic). I liked where I worked, but I wanted to perform massage full-time. Then I got enough guts with another person and opened a massage clinic in a small town of 3,000 people with the rent of $250 a piece. That was back in 1999 and I did that for almost 2 years and my business was steady and I still worked at the nursing home part-time.
The call for teaching…
In 2001 I received a phone call from a person I grew up with and she attended a college for massage therapy and she said they were looking for someone to teach massage. I thought about it for 2 seconds and jumped on the chance. After 3 months of teaching I quit my business and worked full-time as a massage instructor ever since.
The teaching experience…
My first quarter I wanted to quit everyday, but I was stubborn enough to keep going. Three days before I was scheduled to teach I was hired and they gave me a book, syllabus and not much more help than that (now new instructs get tons of extra training before they start). After that first quarter it got a little easier and I didn’t regret leaving my business. With teaching, I never felt there was much of a male/female difference and I really felt I found my calling. I have taught the basics, to the more advanced styles and everything is just a great learning experience. My dad told me that if you like your job more than 50% of the time, then it’s like you aren’t working at all. I totally live by those words and massage has been a savior to me and it has made me complete.
Being a male massage therapist is not all that bad. We just have to choose different areas to be successful in. If I had it to do all over again, I wouldn’t change too much, except have my employment be in more the college, chiropractic, health club or hospital settings. Males are the minority in the massage field (around 20%), but we are here to stay.
Ryan Hoyme A.K.A. MassageNerd