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From rehab to a career in massage therapy

Meet NIMT graduate and instructor, Petra Bierkos

Have you made the momentous decision to change your career and become a Registered Massage Therapist? Do you want to apply your compassion and knowledge to help people feel better? Before that happens, you have another big decision to make: choosing which massage school is right for you. There are many factors that influence this decision — what programs are offered, course schedules, school location and tuition. But the quality and experience of the instructors and faculty should be an important factor as well.

At NIMT, we pride ourselves in the quality of our education, our knowledgeable faculty and being on the cutting-edge of massage therapy theory and technique. (Our advanced massage curriculum is the only one in Alberta to teach the Lensen™ Technique). With our small class sizes, students are able to develop meaningful relationships with their instructors that will enhance their learning experience.

This month we want you to get to know one of our instructors, Petra Bierkos, who is a Registered Massage Therapist (RMT) and Manual Osteopath, specializing in the Lensen™ method and other osteoarticular techniques. Petra is a proud graduate of NIMT and of the National Manual Osteopathic College (NMOC).

The journey begins…
The road to massage came about the tough way for Petra. After a major car accident in 2001 that left her with painful injuries, she tried massage therapy to support her rehabilitation and it helped her enormously. Seeing such powerful results, she became fascinated by the world of massage and by the benefits of the treatment. She was inspired to help others and decided to pursue a career in the field.

After a number of years as an RMT, Petra decided to take her career to the next level and become an Instructor. Coincidentally, the NIMT instructors who had taught her, Lori Lounsbury and Len Balogh, were nearing retirement. Petra wanted to glean as much of their knowledge as possible and shadowed their teaching as their careers winded down. This gave her the foundation she needed and now she teaches because she loves watching her students grow and thrive in the profession. She is passionate about finding new ways to convey a concept in the classroom as well as interacting with a variety of personalities.

“Massage therapy is a flexible career with endless possibilities,??? says Petra. “Every client is different and therefore, always interesting. It’s also wonderful when your clients are thrilled to see you!???

It was important for Petra to find an institution that was staying on top of the latest trends in massage therapy. For her, the decision to choose NIMT was an easy one. Not only is the curriculum designed to allow students to be able to continue working or to raise their families while achieving a higher level of education, it is also the only massage school that provides its graduates with an additional certification in Lensen™ therapy, a training that enables therapists to assess and then immediately correct musculoskeletal imbalances in a precise and gentle way. For students, this means that in addition to receiving their Advanced Therapeutic Massage program diploma, graduates also receive a Certified Lensen™ Therapist certificate.

Seeing students graduate with the skills and confidence they need to become a registered massage therapists is an amazing feeling and gives Petra a great sense of fulfilment and joy. She’s already looking forward to the next batch of new students starting the September 2019 semester!