A Brief History of Massage In Modern America
Massage is a traditional practice nearly as old as humanity. The relaxation and muscular relief from a good massage can, at the very least, lift your spirits. There are many ancient traditional massages that have passed down from generation to generation, and its practice has yet to be lost to history. Perhaps it’s because 87% of individuals see getting a massage as an overall health and wellness benefit. Whatever the reason, massage is here to stay. So, let’s take a look at how it evolved in modern American history.
Massage was a small and sensual part of American culture for a long time, but the health benefits were not popularized until the mid-19th century by two physicians in New York. During that time, it took on the role of medicine for many aches and pains.
Later, in the 1930s, massage saw a decline in popularity that correlated with the increasingly adopted use of modern medicine. This was short-lived, however, and massage saw a surge in the 70s, especially among athletes receiving sports massage.
By the late 80s, however, massage was becoming plagued by pretenders and frauds opening up massage therapy stores without any significant knowledge of this increasingly researched practice.
Late 20th and 21st Century
In the last few years of the 20th century, regulations for licensing massage therapists started to trickle in. Tests were developed for anyone who desired to become a genuine massage therapist. Eventually, this would lead to the safe, consistent growth of the massage industry. As of 2015, the massage therapy became a $12.1 billion industry.
What is the NCBTMB?
The National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork was founded in 1992 as a way to coordinate regulations for massage nationwide.
As a result of their tireless efforts, there are now many opportunities in continuing education for massage therapists, a diverse selection of massage therapy continuing education courses, and in many states, strict requirements for performing massage therapy.
The historical answer to ‘what is the NCBTMB?’ is that it was a legitimizing force for massage therapy in late 20th century America, and a catalyst for growth in the industry.