There are many aspects to conducting yourself professionally in the business world, and as students, the classroom setting gives you a perfect environment to begin your practice. Your ethics not only reflect you; they reflect on your training and your profession. Setting your standards high is good business and a sure way of gaining respect from your clients and your professional colleagues.
According to the Merrium-Webster dictionary, ethics is defined as “rules of behavior based on ideas about what is morally good and bad.”
As a professional massage therapist you will be held to a code of ethics by the many Massage Therapy State Boards across this country. As well as professional organizations such as the Associated Bodywork and Massage Professional (ABMP), American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) and National Board Certification of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NBCTMB).
Much thought has been put into standards of conduct in order to establish clear boundaries between client and therapist. Such boundaries are set in place to create trust in you by the client and the profession in which you have chosen to work.
As you learn massage techniques in your educational experience, you will also receive training in proper ethical conduct. You will learn how to handle ethical matters such as:
- Quality of work
- Scope of practice
- Knowledge of indication and contraindication regarding the health of your client
- The value of conducting yourself with integrity and honesty not only professionally but also personally
- To respect client/therapist confidentiality
- To use proper draping of the client and correct body ergonomics
- Your right to refuse treating a client
- A client’s right to modify or terminate the massage session
- The impropriety and very real legal consequences of engaging in sexual misconduct
- To understand the inappropriateness and unacceptability of discrimination of clients and/or health professionals.
Comments: Please pick one of the following scenarios and let us know what YOU would do.
- A wife asking if her husband is getting a massage from you?
- Your client asks the name of a person they saw leaving your office as they were coming in because they think they know them from high school.
- Can you give away birthday massages?
- How would you handle a client leaving without paying?
- What would you do if a client completely misses an appointment?