Alberta massage therapists association turns 60

Mari-Len De Guzman
September 24, 2013
By
The Massage Therapist Association of Alberta (MTAA) is commemorating its 60th anniversary with various celebrations throughout the year, including a five-day “Diamond Anniversary” conference from Nov. 1 to 5 in Kananaskis, Alta.
“It’s a pretty incredible time to be involved in the profession, and specifically, with the MTAA,” said Pamela Kats, MTAA president. “It’s not every day that you get to be part of such a revolutionary organization. For myself, the best part is being able to look at things such as our previous vision statement and realize that we actualized it. How many organizations can truly say that?”

Since 1953, the MTAA has been a provincially focused, non-profit organization exclusively representing massage therapists, and was one of the founding members of the Canadian Massage Therapist Alliance. Once considered a “fringe” therapy, massage therapy is now the most widely accessed complementary alternative medicine (CAM) in Canada, with $1.5 billion spent annually on massage therapy across Canada and about 1.5 million accessing massage therapy care, the MTAA said.

“The MTAA is proudly synonymous with the massage therapy profession in Alberta, serving as a flagship for Alberta massage therapists who believe in the importance of providing quality massage therapy care to the Alberta public,” the MTAA said in a statement.

There are more than 800 massage therapists in Alberta alone.

Recognizing the need for a larger evidence base to advance the credibility of the massage therapy profession, the MTAA has announced its sponsorship of a research grant specific to massage therapy, which is being offered in co-operation with the Interdisciplinary Network for Complementary Alternative Medicine (IN-CAM). 

“Massage Therapy is well on the way to being a formal health profession, with regulation under the Health Professions Act in Alberta and several other jurisdictions in Canada on the horizon,” the association said. “The MTAA’s long history of setting and maintaining high standards for entry to practice, professional development and upholding accountability to the Alberta public are what make our organization truly unique and a much-needed staple in the Alberta non-profit and health-care landscape.”

Announcements regarding various celebrations being held throughout the year can be found by visiting the MTAA website www.mtaalberta.com.

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