Relax 'N Go Massage | Article

On Campus Massage: a Popular Service Offered Year Round on Nationwide Colleges

You may be familiar with colleges that have hired massage therapists to give students free chair massages during finals, etc. Unfortunately, limiting committee budgets only allow for this de-stressing "treat" once or twice a year.

Some universities have found a way to offer this service year round, at virtually no cost to them. They offer massage through the Heath Center or Fitness Center at a reduced price to students and faculty.

Think your school might benefit from including this in-demand service? The following is a list of key issues you need to consider.

~Massage Therapist(s): Make sure your massage therapist is certified and carries individual liability insurance. More and more states are requiring massage therapists to be licensed. Here’s a map of licensed states: http://www.massagetherapy.com/careers/stateboards.php

~Space: You will need a dedicated room for the massage (a minimum of 8’x12’). Some schools used space in the Recreation Center, others, the Health Center.

~Menu of Services: Most schools offer a 30 minute and 60 minute table massage. Most common techniques include Swedish, Deep Tisssue, and Sports massage. Some schools even offered a block of time dedicated to 10 minute chair massages.

~Availability: Begin offering massage services 1-2 days/week; 2-4 hours/per day and add more as needed.
Scheduling appointments: Begin by having the students/faculty contact massage therapist to schedule appointments (unless you have a staff who can take calls).

~Price: 30 minute massages for students ranged from $25-$40; 60 minute student massages ranged from $45-$65. All schools had a slightly higher price (about $10) for faculty and the public members of the fitness center.

~Payment: All schools handled the payment transaction. Most required to be pre-paid 24 hours before the massage, with no refund for lateness or no show.

~Equipment: Massage therapist should provide massage table, linens, oils, and music.

~Policies and procedures: It’s a good idea to collaborate with your massage therapist and create a brief policies and procedures document in addition to a health intake form.

~Employee vs Independent Contractor: Most schools contracted the massage therapists as independent contractor, while one school considered them employees (stating it was an easier, more efficient way to pay them as a part time employee due to inter-campus payroll system)

~Commission/Split: This depends whether your school wants to make a profit on this service. Most schools were mainly interested in covering costs, so they would keep about 5% and give the rest to the massage therapist.

The main thing is to start out small, see what the demand is, and adjust accordingly.