To Intern or Not To Intern

Are you internship material?

An Internship certainly isn’t required to spark the beginnings of a successful career in massage, and let’s face it, it’s a tough decision to take a position that most likely offers little or no pay. However, internships can be a great way to gain some pretty valuable on-the-job experience that will help you determine which specialties you may want to focus upon in your career and which equipment will work best for your practice, while getting a hands-on, realistic view of life as a professional, practicing massage therapist.

An insightful snapshot of the future

If your internship is with a massage therapy franchise, resort, spa – environments you’ve always been curious about – perhaps you’ll decide it’s exactly your cup of tea – maybe not. Is Sports Massage your chosen path? Go ahead and give it a try. Maybe a six-month stint shadowing a pro who’s been there and done that is all the information you need to adopt it as your life’s pursuit.

How ‘bout those externships?

An interesting concept that’s taken shape is that of an “externship”. This is an opportunity for a massage therapy student or recent graduate to experience life on the job, but with three added perks: Potential pay; less of a time commitment, and possible employment. Externs generally devote several weeks or a few days to an employer. Some employers also offer small stipends or contractor wages, in addition to the potential for employment if a position is available after the externship period. With so many companies cutting back and streamlining their workforces, it’s also been commonplace for externships to act as “employee trial periods”. It’s a great way for employers to pre-screen job candidates to see how they perform off their resume, saving them time and money in the long run to find the best person to fill a position within their organization.

Where to start

Here are just a handful of the many job boards that feature internship opportunities for new professionals, recent graduates and current students. Check them out – pursuing this kind of opportunity could be one of the best decisions you make in your early career … maybe not!




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EarthLite, Inc., ( has been the premier brand in professional spa and massage tables for nearly 40 years. Headquartered in Vista, CA, EarthLite has operations on three continents, producing premium quality, handcrafted equipment using sustainable manufacturing practices and materials. Their continual efforts to create innovative, industry-beneficial tools and technology to help Massage Therapists do the very best job they can throughout the long lifetimes of their evolving careers.