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Starts at $9.98 per contact hour
Min. Hours $$/Hr
4 hours $8.98
8 hours $7.98
12 hours $6.98
20 hours $5.98
30 hours $4.98

Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork Healing Therapies

2.0 Contact Hours
Target Audience: Nurses, healthcare professionals, and interested individuals
Purpose/Goal: The outcome of this course is for the learner to describe the various types of therapeutic bodywork techniques and healing therapies.
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Health care is evolving and integrating the healing therapies of alternative and allopathic medicine. Therapeutic massage and bodywork healing methods are being integrated in many health care organizations. This course will describe somatic and musculoskeletal therapies (therapeutic massage, which includes Swedish massage, sports massage, Esalen massage, neuromuscular massage therapy, and Aston patterning); Eastern, meridian-based, and point therapies (acupressure, shiatsu, Jin Shin Jyutsu, and reflexology); energy-based therapies (Therapeutic Touch, Reiki, and Healing Touch); emotional bodywork (Rolfing and Hellerwork); and manipulative therapies (chiropractic and osteopathy).

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Describe cultural variations in bodywork.
  • List the principles or techniques of contemporary and traditional bodywork.
  • Describe the benefits of therapeutic massage.
  • Explain the therapeutic massage modalities of Swedish massage, sports massage, neuromuscular massage, and Aston patterning.
  • Describe the Eastern, meridian-based, and point therapies of acupressure, shiatsu, Jin Shin Jyutsu, and reflexology.
  • Discuss the energy-based therapies of Reiki, Therapeutic Touch, and Healing Touch.
  • Explain the emotional bodywork therapies of Rolfing and Hellerwork.
  • Describe the manipulative therapies of chiropractic and osteopathy.
  • Identify the cautions and contraindications for massage and bodywork.

Human touch is one of the most primal needs. Research has demonstrated that touch can enhance health and heal the body and mind (Freeman, 2009). As health care evolves and integrates the worlds of alternative and allopathic practitioners, therapeutic massage and bodywork healing methods are being integrated with health care in hospitals, nursing homes, hospice centers, and other healthcare facilities.

Techniques for massage and bodywork vary among practitioners; however, the objectives are similar: to relax; soothe; stimulate; and relieve physical, mental, emotional, and/or spiritual discomfort (Delany, 2015).

Trivieri and Anderson (2002) define the term bodywork as “therapies such as massage, deep tissue manipulation, movement awareness, and bioenergetic therapies, which are employed to improve the structure and functioning of the body” (p. 119). They add that the benefits of bodywork include pain reduction, musculoskeletal tension relief, improved blood and lymphatic circulation, and the promotion of deep relaxation.

Massage is soft tissue manipulation, including holding, causing movement, and/or applying pressure to the body. In general, massage therapists press, rub, and manipulate the muscles and other soft tissues of the body. They usually use their hands and fingers but may also use their forearms, elbow, or feet (National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health [NCCIH)], 2018).

Massage has a complex and extensive history, with over 75 different types of massage and bodywork therapies. First practiced over 5,000 years ago in China and Mesopotamia, massage is a therapy that applies manual techniques and may apply additional alternative and complementary therapies with the intent to positively affect an individual’s health. One of the oldest forms of health practice, massage is derived from the Arabic, Greek, Hindi, and French words associated with touch, pressing, or shampooing (NCCIH, 2018).

Complete the course post exam (CE Test) with a score of 80% or greater. Complete all fields of the course evaluation form. Certificate of Completion is provided once the course post exam is passed per criteria above.

  • American Board of Managed Care Nursing
  • ANCC - American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • AOTA - American Occupational Therapy Association
  • ASWB - Association of Social Work Boards
  • California Board of Behavioral Sciences
  • California Board of Registered Nursing
  • California Department of Health, Aid, and Technician Certification Section
  • District of Columbia Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing - Certified Nursing Assistants
  • Florida Board of Respiratory Care
  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Florida Council of Licensed Midwifery
  • NAADAC - The National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors
  • NCBTMB -National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork
  • Florida Board of Massage Therapists


Practice Level:


Content Focus:

Occupational Therapy Process

Course Expires:

September 11, 2021

  • Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC
  • Caroline Young, MPH
Jurisdictional Requirements:

Continuing education (CE) licensing requirements vary by jurisdiction, are not well defined, and may change. These CE requirements may vary in terms of the number of hours required to the types of courses that must be taken. ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC recommends you contact your licensing board or accrediting organization for the latest continuing education requirements of your state or territory. Compliance with CE requirements is the responsibility of the individual health care provider. Health care providers must understand the CE requirements in their jurisdictions, and be sure they are up-to-date on any rule changes that affect their license. For further information, please see our Accreditation Information.

Accommodations for Disabilities:

Every effort will be made to accommodate your special needs. To request accommodations, please contact us.

Conflicts of Interest and Relevant Financial Relationships:

The authors/planning committee members have no conflicts of interests or relevant financial relationships to declare relevant to this activity.

Commercial Support:

No commercial support has been received for this activity.

Non-endorsement of products:

Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing nursing education only and does not imply ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC approval or endorsement of any commercial product.

Off-label Use of Products:

None of the authors intend to discuss off-label uses of drugs, mechanical devices, biologics, or diagnostics not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.