Technical Standards

These technical standards reflect the abilities necessary for completing the Therapeutic Massage program and are presented to help prospective students assess their own abilities to work in the clinical setting, demonstrate competence, complete the program, and enjoy longevity in the profession. It should be noted that under the Americans with Disabilities Act, “A qualified person with a disability is one who can perform the essential function of a job with or without reasonable accommodation.”

Standard Examples of Necessary Behaviors (not all inclusive)
Interpersonal abilities sufficient to interact with individuals from a variety of social, emotional, cultural and intellectual backgrounds. Establish rapport with clients, colleagues, members of the business community and other health care professionals.  Demonstrate patience and empathy with clients.  Demonstrate giving and receiving therapeutic touch with a variety of individuals.
Perform practice work with all class members, instructors, clinic clients and community service populations.
Communication abilities sufficient for interaction with others in verbal and written form. Collect assessment data.  Explain treatment procedures. Read charts and instructions accurately.  Document and interpret clinical findings and treatment protocols. Communicate effectively, efficiently and appropriately with peers, faculty, supervisors, other professionals and clients. Exhibit teamwork skills and a spirit of cooperation.
Critical thinking ability sufficient for clinical judgment. Identify cause and effect relationship in clinical situations.  Assimilate knowledge from lecture, laboratory and clinical areas.  Retain factual information and use it appropriately.  Develop treatment plans. Demonstrate sufficient observation skills to collect data on client treatment and assure client safety during massage treatment.
Physical abilities sufficient to move around massage tables and treatment areas and use laboratory equipment. Move around clinical space and equipment.  Stretch, bend, lunge or squat as the need arises.  Perform bimanual activities easily.  Be free of musculoskeletal disorders which could inhibit work.
Physical health sufficient to perform and receive therapeutic massage.
Note: Students must have a physical examination and submit a completed physical form before A Wake Tech Physical form must be thoroughly completed and submitted prior to beginning the program.
Have stamina to stand and ambulate around the massage table for long periods of time.  Be free of disabling or contagious disease.  Feel comfortable with touch, and with sick or injured clients.
Gross and fine motor abilities sufficient to provide safe and effective therapeutic massage. Use equipment appropriately.  Use thermal treatment applications.  Assist clients with transfer and movement on massage table.  Drape appropriately.  Move clients through range of motion activities.
Auditory and visual abilities sufficient for physical assessment and monitoring of treatment. Observe client in assessment phase.  Observe and respond to client during treatment phase.  Educate client post massage.
Tactile ability sufficient for assessment and treatment. Perform palpation techniques, perform range-of-motion with clients, perform soft tissue treatment modalities, and perform various manual flexibility techniques.
Critical thinking ability sufficient for professional judgment. Adhere to personal and professional ethics.  Adhere to healthcare privacy rules.  Adhere to professional standards regarding boundaries.
Cognitive and perceptual abilities to progress through the coursework and apply skills gained to professional level. Modify behavior/performance in the classroom or clinic after feedback from the instructor or clinical supervisor. Show problem-solving ability sufficient to organize and complete multiple tasks accurately and within assigned time frames. Act independently and quickly to in emergency situations. Deal with abstract and concrete variables, define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions.
If a Therapeutic Massage student believes that he or she cannot meet one or more of the standards without accommodation or modifications, the college must determine, on an individual basis, whether or not the necessary accommodations or modifications can be made reasonably.