Massage Therapy – Scope of Practice
The Massage Therapy Act, 1991, the provincial legislation for Massage Therapy in Ontario, defines the practice of Massage Therapy as “the assessment of the soft tissue and joints of the body and the treatment and prevention of physical dysfunction and pain of the soft tissue and joints by manipulation to develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical function, or relieve pain.” This is referred to as the “Scope of Practice.”
About Massage Therapy
Massage therapy consists primarily of hands-on manipulation of the soft tissues of the body, specifically, the muscles, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and joints for the purpose of optimizing health.
Massage therapy treatment has a therapeutic effect on the body and optimizes health and well-being by acting on the muscular, nervous and circulatory systems. Physical function can be developed, maintained and improved; and physical dysfunction and pain and the effects of stress can be relieved or prevented through the use of Massage Therapy.
Modern massage techniques can be traced back to the 1700′s and the development of Swedish massage, the first systematic method of therapeutic massage based on physiology. Today’s Massage Therapists use their knowledge of anatomy and physiology to combine traditional Swedish and modern Massage Therapy techniques with exercise and other therapies to treat their clients.
Before a treatment, your Massage Therapist will propose a personalized treatment plan based on an initial assessment and health history. The assessment consists of various tests to determine the condition of your muscles and joints. Any personal and health information you provide to your Massage Therapist is completely confidential and will be safeguarded. Your health record cannot be released or transferred without your written consent.
Your Massage Therapist must also obtain your consent to work on any part of your body, regardless of whether you are fully clothed, or fully or partially covered with sheets or blankets. Your privacy will always be respected, and you may withdraw your consent for treatment at any time.
Various specialized movements of the hands, over the skin or clothes, make up the Massage Therapy treatment. The Massage Therapist will work with your level of pain tolerance during the treatment, and the treatment can be stopped at any time should the treatment become uncomfortable.
Massage therapy is not covered by OHIP, but many private insurance companies cover treatment from a Massage Therapist as part of their extended health care