One number reflects our mission more than any other. That number is our placement rate, and this year topped even last year’s incredible benchmark!
The placement rate shows the percentage of our alumni who have successfully gained or improved their employment status as a direct result of their education at National Holistic Institute. We must carefully track our graduates’ employment to remain nationally accredited and state approved. ACCET, the organization which accredits us on behalf of the U.S. Department of Education, stipulates a placement rate of 70%. NHI handily beat that standard with an overall placement rate for 2012 of 86%!!
When compared to other vocational schools, massage or not, 86% greatly exceeds expectations, especially in an economy still deep in recovery with a limited job market. For those unfamiliar with placement rates, you may wonder, “why not 100%?” Well, life happens to people, even our students. Some relocate, pursue additional education, choose to remain in their current jobs a while longer, get pregnant, suffer illness, tend to family obligations, deploy in the military, and so on.
For massage therapy in particular, a number of students come to school for personal growth or to pursue massage as a pastime on which to practice on family and friends only, never intending to work. For all those considerations, ACCET sets the standard at 70% and NHI managed to high jump over it with 86%!
Everyone at NHI has the same mission to “help people have work they love.” So, achieving this incredible placement rate is a team effort. Of course, we have amazing alumni who came to NHI wanting to learn, desiring to change their careers, and followed up on their dreams upon graduation. Our placement rate is only as good as our graduates! But we hold one group most accountable for helping and tracking our students as they find work – our Student Life & Career Coordinators.
All seven campuses have an SLCC (known to us as “slick”) who often meets prospective students before they enroll, gets to know them from orientation on, guides them through externship and career launch, and ultimately helps them find work they love. This dedicated team, led by their fearless Placement Manager Emily Devenny, deserves our standing ovation.
“2012 was a year of new and exciting job opportunities for our NHI graduates. Many employers reached out directly to our local campuses to meet, interview and hire new Massage Therapists in industries ranging from Spa, to Sports and Fitness, Healthcare, and Corporate On-site,” reports Emily.
Phil Okazaki, the SLCC who led San Jose to 90.5% placement, adds, “I feel the Externship Program helps prepare students for their future job search; and in many cases, helps them get their foot in the door. In fact, with Externship Sites like the San Jose Sabercats and Stanford University Athletics, our students receive experiences that many would find difficult to obtain.”
To work as a massage therapist, one must obtain legal certification. SLCC’s help students with that certification during the course. San Francisco SLCC Alison Trujillo points out, “It is wonderful to see so many students CAMTC certified by the time they graduate. This means they are motivated and ready to work in the field right away!”
“With the knowledge and ability they obtain from our curriculum and the confidence they acquire through our externship and clinic programs,” says Emeryville SLCC Sara Ahmadi, “they are well supplied with all the tools they need for a successful job search before graduation.”
Interested in a career in massage therapy? Our SLCC’s look forward to helping YOU have work you love!
Contact the NHI team today: www.nhi.edu
June 17, 2013 No Comments
-written by Sabrina Italia, NHI Instructor.
Ever wondered why you feel great for a few days after your massage only to find your aches and pains resurface just as they were before the massage?? Most people believe that massage alone can reverse muscle and fascial patterns. In many ways it can, and does short term.
However, sometimes mechanical massage alone isn’t enough to allow a person to release tension and anxiety. When working out a plan with your Massage Therapist, including different modalties may create extended benefits and maybe even permanent reversal of postural deviations or tissue and muscle “stuckness”. In both our Core and Advanced Neuromuscular Therapy programs, NHI teaches students numerous modalities and how to alter the perpetuating factors that can keep clients in pain if unaddressed.
Last week I taught a class to group 18 on the Emeryville campus. In this class we talk about emotional effects on our muscles and joints. Have you ever walked up to a friend and without even saying anything noticed something’s “wrong” just because of their body language? Often times our first response is a hand on the shoulder or back to show support. Sometimes just that initial touch can begin to help someone feel better. In this class we apply “Compassionate Touch” which is simply addressing tense areas with quiet hands (hands that remain still, or mostly still). We find these areas by visually assessing a client’s body to see if they seem to be holding any tension in their body.
I did a demonstration of “Compassionate Touch” on Richard. We observed that he seemed to be keeping his arms tight against his body, enough to make his left shoulder rise up and his chin was slightly tilted up in a potentially defensive manner. (Before)
After the “Compassionate Touch” was applied, we did see a change in how he held himself, and noticed that his shoulder and chin did drop down into a more relaxed state. While the results were minimal, the long term effect could be very beneficial. (After)
Because we prepped the body by getting rid of that initial layer of tension, it’s likely that the benefits of the massage will go farther.
There are many modalities that “prep” the body for mechanical massage. Either way massage is a great and effective tool in stress reduction and is great at helping restore range of motion in joints and tissue.
Research; choose a well-trained, certified massage therapist and get the most out of your massage!
May 28, 2013 1 Comment
Staff Day lives on! Even though National Holistic Institute’s All Staff Day 2013 occurred a month ago, the memories live on in our minds, our new initiatives, and – where else? – the internet.
The San Jose campus presentation, or at least a portion of it, has found a life of its own on the internet. Inspired by the wildly popular web craze, the San Jose staff inserted their version of the Harlem Shake into their campus video. The unexpected presentation detour left the Staff Day audience rolling in the aisles. San Jose’s Harlem Shake found its way to YouTube where the public could witness the goofier side of NHI.
(The above clip is taken from the full video, which can be found here)
NHI’s motto is “helping people have work they love.” Of course this applies to us helping our students thrive in the massage therapy profession, but that starts with everyone who works at NHI loving the work they have. So, while we take our mission seriously, we make sure to have fun with what we do every day. Having fun makes the work seem…well…less like work, improves the learning environment, and produces silliness like the Harlem Shake.
As part of NHI’s All Staff Day, each campus puts together a 10-minute presentation. Some are videos (like San Jose this year), others are live skits, and some we’re still trying to figure out. These presentations highlight the events and staff of the past year for other campuses to see while showing the interconnectedness of NHI. Always from the heart, they often use humor to make a point and laugh about our workplace foibles (CampusVue, anyone?).
Santa Ana celebrated being the newest of the seven campuses by linking to the others through the Seven Chakras of NHI. A rather unkempt fairy made all of StudioCity’s wishes come true. San Francisco showed that they beat to a different drum with a musical interlude. Petaluma stirred the pot with some NHI stew, while Sacramento grew to new heights. And Emeryville took a trip to outer space, where they apparently forgot to bring back Al.
We already look forward to next year’s Staff Day when we can reflect on the upcoming year’s events that have yet to happen. Until then, enjoy the Shake!
Do you have a memorable experience from your company’s staff day? Tell us about it in the comments below!
May 14, 2013 No Comments
National Holistic Institute Staff Anniversaries (Staff Day Post 2 of 3)
Brandy & Monica belted out The Boy is Mine, Bruce Willis saved the world from an imminent asteroid in Armageddon, and Michael Jordan led the Chicago Bulls to the NBA Championship one last time. It was 1998, the year National Holistic Institute founder Carol Carpenter hired a recent college graduate named Jennifer as an admissions representative.
At this year’s NHI All Staff Day, Jennifer Jhanda celebrated 15 years with NHI! In that time, she has gotten married, had a beautiful daughter, and worked her way up the ranks to her current position as Vice President of Admissions. Starting out, the phone and snail mail were an admissions rep’s primary tools. Now, Jennifer oversees a complex network of emails, texts, and Google metrics (Google also began their world domination in 1998). The one thing that hasn’t changed in 15 years is her mission to help people find work they love by matching aspiring massage therapists to the school of their dreams, NHI.
Fast forward five years. The Lord of the Rings found Oscar gold, audiences found Nemo, and NHI found new ownership. 2003 brought a lot new to NHI. After 24 years, founder Carol Carpenter passed along the NHI torch to Mason Myers and Tim Veitzer. This year’s All Staff Day saw Mason celebrating 10 years with NHI! (Tim fully joined a bit later, so he’ll get his turn next year.) Mason commemorated the occasion by thanking all the staff who took a chance and risked the journey with him. And what a journey it’s been! Among many milestones in the last decade, NHI expanded from 1 campus to 7 and added the Advanced Neuromuscular Therapy (or ANMT) program.
Mason had good company up on the NHI stage as four other staff members celebrated 10 years as well. Linda Rikli, Vice President of Education, has commandeered an ever-growing and changing department. She has coordinated the expansion of our core curriculum from 720 to 900 hours, overseen the development of our 450-hour Advanced Neuromuscular Therapy program, and become our unofficial (and perhaps unwilling) tech guru as the one in charge of upgrading our school software system.
Linda’s journey could not have been as successful, robust, or certainly as funny without her partner in crime and office neighbor, our Dean of Students Ron Peat, also celebrating a tenth of a century here at NHI. Under Ron, the student services department has grown to offer more with dedicated staff at every campus. He even accomplished the awe-inspiring feat of increasing an already stupendous completion rate as well. And he keeps us laughing! (Did I mention he has a son named Kevin?)
1,350 hours of NHI education requires copious pages of teacher documents, PowerPoint slides, and over 1,000 pages of student handouts. Keeping all of this together is one woman, Ron’s office neighbor and our Curriculum Coordinator Sharlene Philip. A teacher before her current role, Sharlene also celebrates 10 years at NHI! She shares this milestone with fellow teacher Esko Homsi.
An accomplished teacher in our core program for many years, Esko became one of our first instructors to teach the Advanced Neuromuscular Therapy program a few years back.Mostly, though, he is known throughout NHI for his annual toast at the company holiday party. We love you, man!
Time flies when you’re having fun. It seems like yesterday that Barack Obama was first elected President; Batman, Iron Man, and Indiana Jones were battling for the box office; and Tiger Woods was still winning the U.S. Open. But in reality that was five years ago – 2008, in fact, when four more staffers joined NHI.
Celebrating 5 years teaching at NHI are Darlene Campo and Patrick Keehan! Demonstrating the diverse backgrounds our teaching staff brings to NHI, Darlene (a clown college graduate) makes learning fun for students every day, while Patrick lets his lomilomi (Hawaiian massage) training guide him. Patrick shared the seven principles of lomilomi at our Staff Day and we felt it worthwhile to share here (http://www.sacredlomi.com/articles-lomi/principles-of-huna/).
Rounding out the 10 anniversaries we applauded at this year’s Staff Day are the two Lupitas, both observing 5 years with NHI. Lupita Laney always greets prospective students with a smile as one of our admissions reps and Lupita Ruiz went from punching the telephone keypad as our receptionist to hitting the calculator buttons as one of our financial aid analysts.
We thank these 10 people as both our co-workers and friends. They join good company. Almost half of the employees at NHI have been here over 5 years and 1 in 5 have been here 10 years or more. That puts the employee average at roughly 7 years, which means a lot of combined massage education experience for our students.
Still, they’ve got a ways to go to beat our 20 years and counting veterans who still clock in. Jim, Melissa, and Pat, keep showing us all how it’s done!
April 11, 2013 No Comments
The guy in the tie stood out. He cautiously peered through the Berkeley fog at the hundred or so people surrounding him. Unsure of the rules, but willing to play, he gamely followed their every choreographed move.
Embrace tiger. Combine heaven and earth. Give from your center. Gather what you need.
As Marianna gently voiced each command, the crowd echoed in unison with the appropriate movement. These words, these motions have been repeated again and again throughout the classrooms of National Holistic Institute since tai chi master Al Huang gifted them so many years ago. And, as the man in the tie discovered, every Staff Day begins with them.
Dr. Scott Fitzgibbon has worked in almost all aspects of vocational education. He now shares his wisdom as a noted speaker with schools across the country. But even with many miles and schools behind him, this was the first time he had found himself in the midst of an entire staff performing tai chi all together. They welcomed this somewhat overdressed stranger as one of their own.
Starting the day in a different way turned out to fit Dr. Fitzgibbon’s presentation perfectly. As part of a larger conversation, he talked about how people, to achieve what they truly want, must change their habits, get out of the routine, and look at life differently. Just as Dr. Fitzgibbon pushed us to re-evaluate how we did things, we surely shook him out of his patterns a bit too.
A related topic revolved around defining our own beliefs. This topic particularly hit home with the crowd because, for the last year beginning with Staff Day 2012, the staff of NHI has engaged in various exercises to define what exactly NHI believes. This day would reveal the results of the quest for those beliefs.
To arrive at this destination, all staff submitted what they believed NHI stood for. Working as both individuals and teams, the list of potential beliefs grew to the hundreds. Then, given time of reflection and process of elimination, the staff helped whittle those beliefs down to their core. With much pride and honor, here they are:
NHI Believes In…
• Positive Energy Flowing
• Building Confidence, Creating Opportunity
• Empty Cups and Full Journeys
• Telling the Truth with Compassion
• Providing Safe Space
• Teamwork Making the Dream Work
• Sustainability Through Kaizen
• Creativity and Consistency
• Every body Having a Story
• Embracing Tiger
As these beliefs began to define themselves, the question arose, “What exactly do we do with them?” Much as the beliefs themselves came from the staff, so did suggestions for their display. Ultimately, our curriculum coordinator Sharlene Philip had the winning concept. She incorporated the beliefs into the “fingers” of the NHI logo. Now these beliefs can hang at all seven NHI campuses as a daily reminder of who we are and what we stand for.
All Staff Day is a tradition that convenes every employee of all seven NHI campuses together in Northern California for two days of business, self development, connection, and celebration – mostly lots of happy tears and joyous laughter!
Stay tuned for more Staff Day inspirations in our next posts…
April 5, 2013 3 Comments
by Tiahna Skye
Regulating massage therapy in Petaluma is rife with questions and issues, and demands the serious attention it has been given… and more.
What should we be regulating? What are the possible unintended results? Will legitimate massage therapists be adversely impacted while attempting to restrict prostitution? And how do we oversee the healthy growth of massage therapy as the next advancement in collaborative health care?
I am concerned that the goal of establishing quality controls, educational requirements, and best practice standards is getting lost in a “power struggle” while the dialogue between law enforcement, the community, and massage therapists deteriorates.
Many currently practicing massage therapists want a more lenient local regulation that would create a “grandfather clause”, separate from the new State permit requirements set forth by the California Massage Therapy Council (CAMTC). A clause of this nature would allow these working massage therapists to continue practicing in town without the need for additional education. The argument has been made that those with less than 100 hours of massage specific education have historically provided good care, and should not be subject to additional burdensome requirements.
CAMTC was founded by massage therapists to regulate our own field. The requirements set forth were agreed upon by a large and diverse group of massage, law enforcement, and other health care professionals seeking to define standards of expertise in the interest of public health and safety. Additionally, the hope was that these efforts would further the recognition of massage therapy as a legitimate and valuable health service.
The reality is that even if Petaluma chooses to adopt CAMTC requirements, California still has one of the lowest requirements of any state in the country. Massage therapy has become part of the medical field, and as such, there needs to be definition of the training, practices and ethics of the field. The public has a right to know that the therapy they seek for pain relief or injury rehabilitation is going to be performed by a skilled therapist with in-depth knowledge of applicable techniques, benefits and contraindications.
While I appreciate the City of Petaluma is striving to support the ongoing success of local businesses, I think it is important to also consider the profession in terms of emerging national standards and changing regulatory landscape.
No one opinion or constituency comes out the sole “winner” in this current version of the ordinance. I do believe however, that it addresses the issues well. For example, dictating a specific, professional dress code is unnecessary for lawful massage therapy businesses. Having been a massage therapist for 35 years, I have seen the field change and gain public recognition as a legitimate health service. It is a bit disheartening that we still must deal with any misperceptions as being entangled with the adult entertainment industry.
Nevertheless, I think it is important to remember, as we consider this ordinance, that the city and law enforcement are responding to valid issues of prostitution, and did not create this unfortunate circumstance. While I personally find denigrating the need for a dress code stipulating such things as opaque clothing, I recognize the need to take such measures is a result of the fact that illegal businesses use massage as a front for prostitution.
There are some who feel burdened by the need to meet the hourly educational requirements of the CAMTC certification. I know without a doubt that there are many current massage therapists who do perform a wonderful massage with only 100 or 150 hours of training. I was able to start my own career with 120 hours of training. That said, it is also a fact that at this time the public has no means of distinguishing between those who provide massage designed purely for relaxation, from those who practice therapeutic, issue-related massage techniques.
Regardless of training and experience, we all fall under one heading, Massage Therapist. Because of that I feel strongly that it is important to establish minimum education requirements that ensure public health and safety. As an educator in the field, I am committed to elevating the standing of our profession. To that end, National Holistic Institute offers support in the provision of free continuing education courses to help local practicing massage therapists achieve their permitting requirements, and hopefully alleviate some of the sense of burden they might feel.
I wish that I could say that as a community we had reached consensus about this ordinance. Unfortunately we did not arrive at that destination. My hope is that despite our differing views, we can rise above our individual wants and agree to the steps necessary to further our profession and support our local law enforcement in having the tools they need to ensure the safety of our entire community.
In the end, I think we all want the same things.
We would like to offer legitimate massage therapy services that provide support for the health and well being of those we serve. We would like to live and work in a community that is safe and free from crime. We would like to stand as professionals in the field of massage therapy and be recognized as legitimate and respectable. We would like the freedom to earn a livelihood through the means of our talents and skills. And, we would like to have a sense of belonging and meaningful contribution in the community in which we live and work. I think the city’s proposed ordinance meets those goals and I am in favor of approving it.
~ written by Tiahna Skye, Petaluma campus manager of the National Holistic Institute, a massage therapy school with locations in Emeryville, San Francisco, Sacramento, San Jose and Southern California. For more information about NHI, visit us at www.nhi.edu
What are your thoughts on the topic? Let us know in the comments below!
February 14, 2013 No Comments
January 17th marked a significant holiday for many of the students and Instructors at NHI. It was National Thank Your Mentor Day and anyone who has attended massage therapy school at NHI knows just how important and significant the role of Mentors are, both in and outside of the classroom. National Holistic Institute‘s mentor program pairs each student with a teacher who is also a professional in the massage field to become their point person if they have any questions about the class material, need a little extra push, or just need some guidance on how to become a successful therapist and bodyworker.
We were excited to see that many of our current Mentors actually went through the program before they began teaching under the mentorship of some of our other long-standing Mentor/Instructors – Check out the longest image we’ve ever blogged – a screenshot of some of our graduate comments:
If you haven’t had a chance to thank your mentor yet, you’re in luck! The holiday continues through the end of January. If you’ll see a mentor you’ve appreciated, tell them why you appreciate them – or if you prefer, go ahead and click here to add your 2 cents to the Facebook comments!
If you’re on Facebook and want to keep up with National Holistic Institute, you can Like our page at: facebook.com/NHImassageschool
(After you click “Like”, make sure to hover of the like button and click on “Get Notification” so you don’t miss out on our updates!)
If you’d like to get to know some of the instructors at your local NHI campus, you can start here: nhi.edu/about/people/instructors.html
NHI would like to thank ALL of the Staff and Mentors who allow us to continue bringing in some of the best massage therapy students in the country and who never cease to fulfill their mission of “Helping People Have Work They Love!”
January 22, 2013 No Comments
Sunday, October 14th marked the 9th Annual Nike Women’s Marathon. The world famous event was held in San Francisco and was host to 25,000 runners and walkers. With the San Francisco hills, Golden Gate Park, fog coming in through the bay, and choice ocean views, this was easily one of the most scenic marathons in California. However the beautiful scenes came at a high price… by that I mean the hills, and hills and more hills that San Francisco has to offer.
With the punishment the athletes had put their bodies through, it was clear that sports massage was the right remedy for their tired, aching muscles. The main goal of a post event Sports Massage is to help the athletes’ bodies cool down, calm their nervous system and assist with their recovery time. We had many runners walk out of the tent feeling much better than when they staggered in.
The massage tent was sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, and part of the wellness / recovery village. The National Holistic Institute showed up in force with over 80 massage stations, 115 team members and 6 campuses represented. Collectively we worked on over 1400 athletes and made a difference in their post race experience. Athletes loved the massage, and they were very grateful; plus the students / staff of NHI had a great experience. All in all it was a successful event.
Massage has come a long way in being integrated within athletic communities. We now see massage therapy on athletes in colleges, professional teams, the Olympics and special events such as the Nike Women’s Marathon. We as an industry have much more integration to work towards. I await the day where every athlete – from professional to weekend warrior makes massage a part of their recovery regimen. Like the old saying goes “work hard, play hard”…and to that I add treat your body right!
Written by Lucas Nevarez,
Instructor at NHI Sacramento
For more information about sports massage, check out http://www.nhi.edu/massage_school/sports_massage.html
October 30, 2012 No Comments
“The Norma”, as the award is affectionately called, is named after Norma Ford who passed away from ovarian cancer several years ago. She was a longtime California financial aid trainer, California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools board member, and original inductee into the CAPPS Stars Hall of Fame. Near the end of her struggle, she spoke about how wonderful it would be for CAPPS to find a way to recognize outstanding Financial Aid administrators, whom Norma believed are a critical yet often overlooked part of schools.
This year was the third year of awarding the Norma Ford Award. The criterion are simple but tough. The winner must be nominated by third parties who have concluded that he or she has gone far beyond the normal requirements of the job and is considered in the institution as a great help to other staff and students in completing their work or their programs.
We are excited to announce that our colleague at the National Holistic Institute, Pat Troxel, is the 2012 winner! Pat has been with us for over 21 years and over 12 years as the Director of Financial Aid. During her early years in financial aid, she took many classes and workshops taught by Norma Ford herself to learn the ins and outs of financial aid. She is known for her care for students, diligence to detail, and her direct communication style to keep us all on our toes. She is quick with a quip that keeps us all laughing. Most importantly, she is a steady, reliable hand to keep the school operating well.
Quote from Jason Daniels: “Over the years, Pat has taught me so much about what it means to work in financial aid and administer the program with the proper level of integrity. Her mentorship has been invaluable in my career and I truly wouldn’t be whre I am today without her.”
We are so proud of Pat’s accomplishment and welcome your stories and thoughts for Pat in the comments below!
To learn more about NHI’s financial aid program, visit http://nhi.edu/massage_school/tuition.html
October 23, 2012 1 Comment
Growing up we always knew when Summertime was officially coming to an end. We could feel it in the weather, the change in the leaves, and when our parents would take us back-to-school shopping for clothes and supplies. None of us are the same, so we probably all reacted differently to going back to school. Some of us were excited to start a new school year, learn new things, meeting our teacher and classmates. Then there were those of us who didn’t feel that way, because going back to school meant going to bed early, waking up early, taking tests, reading and group projects, yikes. But at that time we were young and we had to go to school. No ifs, ands or buts about it.
Well, most of us aren’t in elementary school anymore, and as adults, if we choose to go back to school, we get to decide what we study. So find out what you’re passionate about, start looking into it, find the right school for you, and get educated. There is no better time than the present to take initiative and make an investment in your future.
As an admissions counselor at National Holistic Institute, a school of massage therapy, I have the pleasure of meeting people right from the beginning, while they are researching schools and finding out what kind of education they want. I enjoy listening to the different reasons why people are looking into massage therapy. Whether they have always enjoyed giving massage to family and friends, or simply know that they want to help heal people, they are going to be a part of a respected profession and a growing industry.
Speaking of the industry, let’s take a look at the facts, because whether we are good at math or not, we all like to see numbers when it comes to the job outlook. The U.S. Department of Labor reports that employment for massage therapists is expected to grow by 20% from 2010-2020. This is faster than the average for all occupations! And it’s only going to increase as more and more people become aware the of many health benefits of massage therapy.
So whether you are eighteen and looking to take the next step in your adult life, thirty something searching for a new, exciting career, or someone seeking the opportunity to learn a highly in demand skill, then massage therapy may just be your thing! Just know that you are not alone in this journey, we will be there to support you from the moment you take your first tour, massage your first client, pass your final exams, and even as a graduate. We’re just awesome like that because we know you’re important and making a difference in the world.
So what will your next endeavor be as the new season approaches? What are your goals, your aspirations? Do you want a rewarding career helping people? If so, pick up the phone and give us a call. We’ll be more than happy to show you how you can have work you will love for the rest of your life.
National Holistic Institute
October 3, 2012 1 Comment
Good food, good wine, good music, good people… GREAT massage!
National Holistic Institute’s On Site Massage Team was proud to join forces with Taste of Petaluma fundraiser for Cinnabar Theater, a treasure of theatrical delights for 40 years, and one of the highlights of living in Sonoma County.
Local residents and guests embarked on a culinary journey to Petaluma’s finest restaurants, wineries, breweries and food purveyors, galleries and shops. This year they found respite from all their gastronomic indulgences in the hands of the Petaluma Campus On Site Massage Team.
The team performed hundreds of massages to the accompaniment of local musicians while aromas of delicious foods wafted by. Students delighted in meeting more of their community and building their client base, while at the same time seeing the delighted expressions of those who were just learning about our fabulous low fee student clinic.
The event was a wonderful celebration of community, arts, massage, and holistic living.
Cheers, Taste of Petaluma!
September 17, 2012 3 Comments
This Spring, National Holistic Institute opened its newest campus in Santa Ana, CA (Orange County). Eager massage students began classes in May with a Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting celebration following shortly after on June 21. NHI offers a comprehensive program that covers a variety of modalities within Western and Eastern styles of massage, combined with business and science classes.
Today, those students that began in Group 80 have completed their Western segment – They have become Seniors and welcomed new Juniors to their Group as they move into the Eastern massage modalities. This two-segment structure allows the Seniors to hone their skills by passing what they have already learned to their Juniors. As Particle Physicist Frank Oppenheimer said, “The best way to learn is to teach”. We are excited to see them progress in their journey to having work they love!
As of today, four classes are already in session with one more class scheduled to start later in September! NHI Santa Ana is located minutes from South Coast Plaza and John Wayne Airport. In addition to classrooms and offices, the 10,000 square foot campus features a clinic providing low-cost massages to the public while giving students practical training opportunities.
NHI Santa Ana is one of many examples of the growing importance of the massage therapy industry in Southern California in general and Orange County in particular. NHI Studio City, the school’s other Southern California location opened in August 2006, has experienced a 50% enrollment increase over the last two years. Founded in 1979, NHI was California’s first accredited massage school. The World Massage Festival named NHI as the 2012 Massage Therapy School of the Year.
NHI Santa Ana graduates will have a wide choice of employment options. Currently, there are hundreds of successful massage therapy businesses in Orange County ranging from independent massage therapists, medical offices with massage therapists on staff, spas, and national chains such as Massage Envy which currently has 20 outlets in Orange County and more are in the planning stages.
Cynthia Ribeiro, president of the American Massage Therapy Association and developer of NHI’s Advanced Neuromuscular Therapy Program, said “The attitude towards massage therapy as an important therapeutic option has evolved so much over the past two decades and many more massage therapists are working in clinical settings which is fueling demand for NHI graduates.”
NHI Santa Ana offers a core 900 hour massage therapy program as well as a 450 hour Advanced Neuromuscular Therapy Program for those who have had prior training in massage therapy and seek to boost their knowledge of injury rehabilitation, pain management, and special needs clients in a variety of clinical settings.
Prospective students interested in NHI Santa Ana should visit the school’s website or contact 714-668-9263.
September 12, 2012 1 Comment
This week’s blog post highlights a unique business founded and run by graduates of National Holistic Institute.
Hands for Humanity Massage is a local, Midtown massage business that cycles funds back into local non-profits in the Sacramento area. They provide the opportunity to receive a massage and support a local non-profit at the same time by giving 10% of your massage cost back to a non-profit of your choice.
Jenna Maggard, founder and owner of Hands for Humanity Massage, has created a business model that not only helps to heal individuals, but the larger community as well.
Jenna’s co-founder and fellow NHI graduate Chene Watson, both graduated from the Sacramento campus and live in Midtown. They have a passion for massage but they love their community as well and take pride in being a local, Midtown Sacramento massage business. This being the main reason for why they are focusing on being part of events that take place in Midtown area. They have collaborated on two Second Saturdays with an art event called Art Bazaar; set up chair massage sessions at Insight Coffee Roasters for their “Cappy Hour” every Thursday; set up a chair massage event at The Art Complex, and another chair massage event at a CD release party at The Guild Theater of Oak Park, Sacramento.
“My education at NHI is the reason I am able to create this dream into a reality. NHI provides an in-depth education of several massage modalities, kinesiology, anatomy, pathology, physiology, and business. My mentor and all the staff at NHI have also provided incredible support, during school and after graduation. All the staff has played a role in developing the massage therapist I am today. I can’t thank each and every one of them enough for the tools, the patience, the love, the time they have made available for me, and the encouragement.” -Jenna Maggard
Hands for Humanity Massage invites you to learn more about them or to book an in-home/office/on-location massage. You can visit them at handsforhumanity-massage.com or just call Jenna Maggard at (707) 631-1366 or Chene Watson at (916) 396-1701.
July 30, 2012 No Comments
Here in San Francisco students brought health and relaxation to the senior community. As part of our Community Services program, students provided chair massage for residents and staff of Martin Luther Tower, a residence facility that provides affordable, independent living for seniors in the heart of San Francisco.
After a warm welcome from the residents, our NHI students set up shop and worked nonstop! We were amazed at the positive response. Highlights of the event were chatting with the residents, giving information about NHI, and providing massage for Martin Luther Tower’s oldest resident who is 102 years old.
The event was extremely well-received; One of the residents even happened to be an NHI grad from 1990! We were impressed that every client was able to use the massage chair and welcomed the experience. This was a great way for students to gain experience working with an older population.
Our students look forward to more opportunities like this to give back to the community while honing their massage therapy techniques and broadening their experience. If you have an idea for a special event you would like our students to take part in, feel free to get in touch with us at http://www.nhi.edu/employers/special_events/
Student Life & Career Coordinator
National Holistic Institute, SF Campus
July 18, 2012 No Comments
Several days ago it finally happened… With the right light and the right angle, as illusive as it might have been it was clearly there – not a six pack but an eight pack! As every well trained massage therapist knows, the Rectus Abdominis is really a ten pack. We all have it but for most part it remains hidden. So how did I get to see it?
For the past few years I have been practicing Bikram Yoga. Sure it is nice to get a glimpse of your own six pack (or eight pack) but there is so much more to it. The benefits are countless, and are especially important for massage therapists. During class at National Holistic Institute, my students took part in some Bikram Yoga postures to enhance our massage therapy practice and to maintain a holistic approach to our own wellbeing. I’ve outlined just a few of the benefits for therapists here:
Bikram yoga is a 90 minutes open eye meditation. Practicing this kind of meditation you will notice that grounding in and out of your massage session becomes much more effective. You will no longer feel tired and drained of energy but instead you will feel focused and energized after each session.
This practice implements the same body mechanics principles as massage does and gives us opportunity to solely focus on them. As every new massage therapist knows when we learn massage we need to focus on the technique, on body mechanics on quality of touch, on the flow and rhythm of the sequence. Here in the yoga class we have an opportunity to practice body mechanics and improve our posture before we do massage. With each class we train our proprioception and then emerge into the world with new posture and somatically enhanced way of moving. This gives us the advantage of longevity in the field. From that point every massage we do has a positive effect on us as well as the client.
Stamina is what makes a difference in how much revenue you will be able to produce. Bikram Yoga is a great cardio workout and with time will increase your ability to work for extended periods of time.
Balanced Immune system will help you avoid getting a cold or flu and therefore make you a more reliable therapist (I have not have the need to call in sick or cancel an appointment with client since I started practicing yoga (about 5 years ago). More reliable therapist means more reliable and robust clientele base!
The profuse sweating experienced in this form of yoga has a detox effect on the body. Your skin will be glowing, your eyes will be bright; you will feel like a totally new you.
The best part – anybody can do it! It is a good idea to talk to your instructor about any injuries and they will assure the session is safe for you. If you are ready to enhance your life and massage practice don’t wait… Take your first class! The first class is usually the toughest one but it gets easier. Bikram Yoga is one of the best paths to self care for massage therapists and I will continue my practice for many years to come.
Perhaps I will see you there.
Mentor and Instructor
NHI San Francisco
July 2, 2012 No Comments
One aspect of a healthy lifestyle is having a healthy diet. And an aspect of the “healthy diet” that has gotten a lot of exposure in recent years is the need to eat locally grown food produced without chemical fertilizers and pesticides.
Local, sustainably produced food has tons of health and environmental reasons to recommend it, and it generally tastes great too. But it does take work. Now, conventional, chemical-intensive agriculture is not easy either, but the work is generally reduced by using huge, expensive, gas-guzzling machinery and expensive, frequently toxic chemicals.
With seasonal, chemical-free farming, that chemistry and machinery is replaced by the farmer’s energy and exertion: digging, hoeing, weeding, shoveling, hauling, picking, and so on. In other words, many of the health and environmental benefits of small-scale, sustainable farming are due to the fact that the process rests on natural cycles… and lots of manual labor.
When I was in massage school up in the mountains of North Carolina, I spent some time working on an organic farm. The work was fun, active, outdoors, and I often came home with a bag of fresh veggies too. Wielding shovel and hoe, I did battle with weeds and insects. Naturally, I deeply appreciated my newfound circle of massage therapists-in-training. But what really surprised me was the difference that was made by learning to move efficiently… in other words, using good body mechanics. If you aren’t familiar with the term, check out this great video introduction to Proper Body Mechanics For Massage Therapists.
When I brought my massage therapist’s Lunge and Weight Transfer out to the spinach field it was nothing short of a revelation.
Suddenly it seemed like I had a boundless reserve of energy to apply to all of manual-labor challenges that farm work provides. The actual work became more fun, and the attention to the body mechanics made me more present with my work, and in a paradoxical way, being present rather than daydreaming made the work shift fly by. And at the end of the day I wasn’t exhausted, but energized, like I had done several hours of Tai Chi – the only difference being I had a hoe or shovel in my hand the whole time!
Now fast forward some fifteen years… My path of teaching massage has led me to Sonoma County, which may as well be the center of the sustainable farming universe. A multitude of small, sustainable farms are scattered across the wine country. Many are certified organic, and at least a few describe their practices as “beyond organic”.
As an effort to give something back to the hard-working men and women who are fighting on the front lines of this Food Revolution, National Holistic Institute’s Petaluma Campus is sending Student Therapists out to local small farms to do massage and offer coaching on body mechanics and self-care. This is a chance for sore, tired bodies to get massage, as well as get the movement education that might help them be a little less sore and tired next time. It’s also a chance for the students to practice their massage, networking, and health educator skills… and maybe to come away with some nice fresh veggies too!
Do you want to get involved in supporting our sustainable farmers?
Here are some ideas that you could easily implement in your area:
• Farmer’s Markets have become a big hit in many urban areas. This is a great opportunity to meet and market to healthy-minded people in general, and many markets feature on-site massage for customers. Bring your business cards!
• Farmer’s Markets are a prime way to meet your local farmers. Most of these folks would be happy to have you tour their farms. With a little clever marketing, you could easily set up a chance to do free chair massage for their workers as a promotional activity. You could also make a pitch to offer a little mini-class on body mechanics and self-care. Bring your fliers and Powerful Presentation skills!
• Most farms have a farm store on-site that could make a good externship site. Many organic farms have volunteer, internship, and work-trade options – and some might even be open to trading massage for farm produce. “Will work for food! (if it’s sustainable, local, and organic!)”
I hope that inspires you to “lend a hand” to the sustainable farming movement! Happy Eating!
Mentor and Instructor
June 20, 2012 No Comments
If you hadn’t heard yet, April was National Autism Awareness month. Currently, we are in a trend of a growing number of children being diagnosed with developmental disorders which include Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), pervasive development disorder (PDD), and nonverbal learning disorder (NLD).
These disorders used to be rare. In the 1980s, the diagnosis rate was 1 in 5000. Today, we are at 1 in 110. With this rising rate, it is becoming more common for us to know at least one person in our life that either has Autism or is the parent of an Autistic child.
Tina Allen, founder of Liddle Kidz™, Pediatric Massage Master Teacher, and Massage Therapist says, “Many autistic children have sensory malfunction and dysfunction of the tactile system making them averse to certain sights, sounds, smells or touch. Given that autistic children have been reported to be opposed to physical contact, it is interesting that many massage therapists, and parents, are finding great success in the use of massage therapy with autistic children.”
She also states, “Research has found that these children show less autistic behavior, are more social and attentive after receiving massage therapy. This safe, nurturing touch and regular sensory integration is beneficial in reducing inattentiveness, touch aversion and withdrawal.”
The Liddle Kidz™ foundation offers Massage Therapists NCBTMB-Approved Training on Massage for children with Autism. These courses review what Autism is, what type of therapies are currently used, how to communicate, educating tools to help empower the parents, as well as hands-on practice time.
With this rising rate becoming as common as other pathologies, it is important that Massage Therapists become educated and prepared for this potential application to their practice. It very well could change the life of a family in a very positive way.
To introduce children to therapeutic touch, Tina suggests combining storytelling with touch to make the experience very positive for the child. Read our blog post, A Different Kind of Bedtime Story to find out how!
For more information on LiddleKidz™ and class schedules visit: http://www.liddlekidz.com/autism-massage-training.html
National Holistic Institute Sacramento Instructor
April 30, 2012 No Comments
Waking up before dawn isn’t always the easiest thing to do… but when it’s for a Sports Team Event like the Oakland Running Festival, you can be sure that the day ahead will be full of excitement.
Some National Holistic Institute students were so eager that they beat the instructors to the site. While dark clouds filled the sky, the students’ spirits remained bright. As we began setting up the tent prepared for the team, we knew there wasn’t going to be enough room. The Emeryville campus and Sabrina Italia even came prepared with two additional tents – still, there were at least 8 tables that were left to brave the elements.
Before the event began, Curtis Hisao led our crew in a briefing to lay out our expectations for the day and of course… took some group pictures! One of the Emeryville Team, one of the San Jose Team and the all inclusive team picture. (You can see the sun trying its best to come out to greet us)
Over 9,000 people participated in the Running Festival this year and as the students can attest, the runners came in tsunami-sized waves to the massage tent. First the 5K and 10K runners were treated to the bodywork… then after a 45 minute pause in the action, the Half and Full Marathoners came crashing down on the massage tent. With support from Dr. Jessica Greaux and InnerSport Chiropractic, the team completed over 450 complimentary massage sessions, including one special session for a national spokes…gecko???
The NHI Team enjoyed their 3rd year supporting the efforts of The Oakland Running Festival and with the continued growth of the event, it appears to have a bright and exciting future ahead.
March 28, 2012 1 Comment
Springtime is just around the corner, and with it comes the natural inclination for a fresh, clean start! While this year’s lack-of-a-winter in most of California is an exception, generally spring means an end to the cold, dark part of the year and a rebirth of new life and activity.
This means it’s also a natural time for cleansing… on all different levels. Cleaning the house is a no-brainer, and probably needs little explanation or description. But we also live in our bodies (well, some of us, anyway!), and the body collects the physiological, energetic, and emotional equivalent of cobwebs, dust-balls, and cluttered closets as well!
So how can we give our bodies a good spring cleaning? Here’s a few of my favorite ways:
Up in the mountains of Western North Carolina, the ‘Old Timers’ have an interesting spring ritual. After eating little but pork and potatoes all winter, they would understandably feel a little sluggish come springtime. Some of the first wild plants that push up thru the spring snow are burdock and nettles, which are known in herbal lore for their power to cleanse the blood.
The old-timey mountain folk would make a nutritious and purifying tea from these plants to flush out the toxins their bodies had accumulated over the winter. Burdock, nettles, and other “spring cleaners” grow in California – but it’s probably a good idea to seek some qualified instruction before harvesting or preparing wild plants. Or just pick up an herbal tea from your local health food store’s herb department!
In addition to wild plants, another passion of mine is yoga, and a great cure for the winter blahs is movement. I’m particularly fond of the classic sequence of Hatha Yoga postures known as the Sun Salutation. This flowing sequence of forward folds, back bends, and hip openers is renowned for its stimulatory effects, especially its ability to improve the flow of lymph. Now, if you don’t already know, the lymphatic system is closely connected to our immune system and anything that helps the lymph flow generally helps our immune system function better. Just in time for when that spring pollen fires up the allergies!
Finally, let me suggest that you GET A MASSAGE! Most styles of massage help lymph and blood flow more efficiently, and some styles (like lymphatic massage!) are intended specifically to help support the body’s natural cleansing, detoxing, and immune functions. Of course, almost all massage feels great, lifts the mood, increases the energy, and can help relieve the stiffness that follows the inactivity of winter.
So, whatever method works for you, let me wish you a happy spring cleaning!
To schedule a massage at one of our California locations: http://nhi.edu/massage_clinic/index.html
March 19, 2012 No Comments
With the first rains of the season in the Bay Area recently, we started getting a little chilly! And what better way to fight off the winter blues than a steamy Thai Herbal Compress Massage! NHI Instructors Kristine TenBrink and Darlene Campo recently led a special lab for Group 30 Seniors in Luk Pra Kob (as the modality is known in Thailand). Both teachers have had extensive, but slightly different experience working with the compresses: Kristine was trained in Thaiyurveda while working at the exclusive Preston Wynne Spa in Saratoga, while Darlene studied Thai Herbalism at Spirit Winds School of Thai Massage in Nevada City and recently attended a lecture given by Ajahn Supamas Kananurak at the Second Annual Traditional Thai Medicine & Massage Symposium organized by the Thai Institute of Healing Arts in Arlington, Virginia.
Students used authentic, handmade herbal compresses from Thailand which were purchased at Bua Thai Wellness Center in San Mateo. Each cotton muslin sachet contained indigenous Thai herbs such as Siamese ginger, tamarind leaves, lemongrass, and kaffir lime peel, along with generous portions of camphor, borneol, sea salt, and turmeric. (Note: For more information about the healing properties of Thai herbs, please see A Thai Herbal: Traditional Recipes for Health and Harmony by Dr. Pierce Salguero.)
The poultices were placed in a vegetable steamer to heat, which released the aromatherapy and medicinal properties of the herbs. After testing the bundles on their forearm to ensure that they weren’t too hot for the client, the students addressed the Sen lines (energy pathways) of the back, softening the musculature, and encouraging the free flow of energy. The combination of moist heat and compression was not only therapeutic, but also highly relaxing for the client. Even Kristine and Darlene left the lab happy and calm from just being in the room with the herbs all morning!
To learn more about NHI’s curriculum including both Eastern and Western modalities, check out Our Curriculum Page.
February 15, 2012 2 Comments