Holistic Massage School Hosts TuiNa (Acupressure) Public Day For Massage Enthusiasts

Welcome to Public Day!!!

“At Healing Hands School of Holistic Health (Healing Hands), our nationally accredited programs ensure students are given a strong foundation in Anatomy and physiology, plus access to a variety of massage modalities and complementary holistic health courses” said Paula Curtiss, Founding Director.  “Our 100 hour TuiNa (Acupressure) class teaches a massage modality based on Traditional Chinese Medicine. This modality involves stimulation of acupressure points to affect the flow and balance of “chi”, (life energy) through “meridians” or pathways in the body”, she explained. 


On February 5th, Healing Hands Escondido campus hosted “TuiNa Public Day”,

Practicing the Tui Na Technique of Rolling

directed by Staff Instructor, Raina Colvin.  Public Day is part of Healing Hands student evaluation process and is mandatory for a passing grade in any massage class.  On TuiNa Public Day, students were required to perform TuiNa massage on several public volunteers tasked with evaluating the student’s therapeutic performance and communication skills. 

In Raina’s class students learned dozens of manipulation techniques to move chi through ill and injured areas of the body where blockages tend to occur. They practiced specific treatments to address chronic pain and disorders of the spine and joints, such as Rotator Cuff problems of the shoulder or Sciatica which can send pain across the hip and down the leg. Through hands-on demonstration and hours of practice, students learned to  master oscillating techniques to increase energy, as well as the traditional compressions and pulls characteristic of Tui Na. Benefits of this traditional modality include:

  • Chair Massage basics

    Increased blood flow thru the body.
  • Reduces muscle stiffness and pain.
  • The warming of stiff muscles, tendons & ligaments which greatly reduce the potential for injury.
  • Increases range of motion and flexibility.
  • Positively impacts the nervous system by reducing stress hormones (Cortisol) and increasing pleasure hormones (Endorphins).
  • Helps speed healing of injured muscles and body tissues.
  • Speeds muscle recovery from over-use.
  • Calms the nervous systems and encourages relaxation.
  • Improves circulation of blood and lymph flow to the massaged area.


Raina Colvin – Tui Na Acupressure Instructor

Raina Colvin is a National Board Certified Massage Therapist, Holistic Health Practitioner and has been a Staff Instructor for Healing Hands for over 20 years.  A multi-modality Massage Instructor, Raina teaches both Eastern and Western modalities including:  Circulatory Massage, Massage, Tui Na Acupressure, Shiatsu, and Chair Massage. Recognized for her exceptional knowledge, engaging sense of humor and skillful therapeutic body-work, Raina is one of Healing Hands most beloved Instructors.   

To learn more about Healing Hands,  TuiNa (Acupressure) Massage, upcoming Public Days, or any of the 80+ courses offered, please visit us on-line at www.HealingHandsSchool.com or call us at (858) 505-1100 in San Diego,  (760) 746-9364 in Escondido, or (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills. 

Holistic Massage School Hosts Public Day for Shiatsu Students

Shiatsu Public Day – getting started

As the students of Healing Hands School of Holistic Health (Healing Hands) are busy finishing up their semester classes, for many it marks the end of the Program and beginning of a new chapter of life.  In addition to a solid understanding of  Anatomy, Physiology, and hands-on massage therapies, the lessons  learned at Healing Hands, empower students to choose from a multitude of career paths in the Holistic Healing Arts. 

Use the full weight of your body to give massage

During the final weeks of each course, students prepare for mandatory written exams and what the Healing Hands’ Faculty calls “Public Day”.  It requires they perform 1.5 hour massages to two complete strangers.  The massage is given to a public volunteer who is tasked with evaluating the student’s newly acquired skills.  Despite the students initial reservations, they almost always report that Public Day was an experience they truly enjoyed and won’t soon forget.

One of the classes hosting a “Public Day” this January was Shiatsu, taught by Staff Instructor, Harmony Curtiss.  Based on Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shiatsu had been used throughout Asia for thousands of years before gaining popularity in the US.  Designed to improve the flow of qi (energy) in the body, Shiatsu helps restore balance in mind and body while activating the body’s innate healing system.  Rather than fluid strokes, Shiatsu Practitioners will use a variety of compression techniques and manipulations to effect the 12 energetic pathways of the body called “Meridians”.

Learn how to use your whole body!

Shiatsu is performed on a floor mat with the patient dressed in loose work-out clothing so his/her body can be moved and manipulated by the Therapist.   Many students start a Shiatsu massage by “crawling the body” before applying finger and palm pressure along the different Meridians.  Meridians can be found on their patient’s back, neck and shoulders, torso, arms, legs and feet, so it is also a therapeutic full-body massage.

While working, students reflected on Harmony’s pre-event words.  She reinforced that Holistic Health is all about creating a space for the ‘letting-go’ experience that facilitates all healing.  The therapeutic and holistic effects of Shiatsu include:  a reduction in muscle stiffness, anxiety, and stress; improved circulation and range of motion; plus an enhanced sense of well-being. 

Cobra Stretch

A career as a Professional Massage Therapist offers financial independence, a strong job outlook, flexible hours, a variety of work environments and opportunity to make a positive difference. The educational experience offered at Healing Hands exposes one to both Eastern and Western modalities and dozens of Holistic Health practices,  often serving as a catalyst for the students own personal growth, healing, enhanced self-confidence and sense of purpose.  To learn more visit us on-line at www.HealingHandsSchool.com or call us at (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills, or (760) 746-9364 in Escondido, or (858) 505-1100 in San Diego.

Traditional College Just Not For You, Relax!!!….  You’re Not Alone!

Learn how Massage Therapist Training Can Put You on a

Fast-track to Financial Independence!

According to the College Board, in 2016–2017 the cost of tuition for a traditional 4-year college education exceeded $9,600 at public colleges and $33,000 at private colleges, says Paula Curtiss, Director for Healing Hands School of Holistic Health (Healing Hands).  “In addition, the National Student Clearing-house Research Center revealed that over 75% of our nation’s workforce hold ‘middle skill’ jobs that don’t even require a Bachelor’s degree! These statistics may reveal why more and more high-school grads, millennials, and those seeking a mid-life career change are knocking at our doors in search of a more practical educational alternative”, she added.

When attending a traditional college, students put their life on hold for 4 years, accrue substantial debt, and graduate without any assurance of employment.  Anthony Carnevale, Director and Research Professor at Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce announced that in 2015 approximately 2.8 million university graduates entered the workforce with Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral degrees yet data showed 13.8 percent of 18 to 29-year-olds remained unemployed.  This rate is much higher than our national average which means thousands of University Graduates are facing an enormous debt incurred by an education that could not deliver!

At a vocational school, such as Healing Hands, the costs for your education is substantially lower and the Program duration is much shorter.  At Healing Hands, for example, our 600-hour Massage Therapist Program, which prepares students for State Certification, takes about 7 months and costs approximately $7,200.  The expanded, 1000-hour Holistic Health Practitioner Program takes only 12 months to complete. 

At Healing Hands, instead of a Bachelor’s Degree, a Massage Therapist receives certificates that qualify them to pursue State Certification, which is an employment requirement. The entire education to certification process takes less than a year so graduates can get working fast, reduce their debt quickly and get on with the pursuit of happiness!

Healing Hands serves residents through three regional campuses located in San Diego, Escondido and Laguna Hills.  Classes are offered during the day, evenings and on weekends to  accommodate a variety of student schedules. To date, we’ve prepared more than 7,000 students for successful careers in Massage Therapy and Holistic Health and can do the same for you!  Learn more online at www.healinghandsschool.com  or call us at (858) 505-1100 in San Diego, (760) 746-9364 in Escondido,  or (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills.                          ###

Holistic Massage School Asks… Who Is The Ideal Massage Client?

“When Massage Therapy graduates decide to begin their own solo-business, it’s natural that they will attempt to get anyone and everyone to be their client”, says Harmony Curtiss, Director for Healing Hands School of Holistic Health (Healing Hands).  “This kind of unfocused approach, however, can leave one feeling scattered, and their marketing efforts overwhelming yet unproductive.  That’s why we’ve added classes like: “Clinical Massage”, “Massage As a Business”, and “Community Service Internship & Externship” that help students explore and evaluate working with a variety of clientele”, she added.

The unfortunate truth is, that when a Practitioner works on someone who they perceive to be un-cooperative, un-appreciative, argumentative, or otherwise un-pleasant or draining, they risk the biggest causes of burnout in the massage profession.  While initially one may have to work on people who are less than ideal, over time, the Practitioner ends up feeling frustrated or resentful and inadvertently does less than their very best. 

To ensure longevity of practice, Healing Hands helps you to identify your ‘ideal clients’ so you can target those you enjoy working with and ensure you’ll remain true to your sense of purpose.  Identifying the various ‘demographic’ groups you resonate with will ultimately save you a lot of wasted time, expense, and effort. It also helps you recognize and take advantage of opportunities to recruit the right potential clients when you meet them through everyday interactions. 

The definition of demographics is: Specific factors which identify and/or distinguish a target population or market, ie: the age or age range of your ideal client; their activity level, their sex, their interests, their income, motivation level, location, and attitude toward Therapeutic Touch and the Holistic Healing Arts.

For example, this Blogger’s ‘Ideal massage clients’ are: Self-empowered young mothers or working women between the ages of 25 and 55 who are financially secure, health conscious and interested in holistic health.  These women have full, busy lives and seek balance in Mind/Body/Spirit.  They are committed to engaging in regular exercise, healthy eating, Meditation and Massage as parts of their personal wellness plan.  As holistic health enthusiasts, these clients appreciate me and my services and happily refer friends and family. 

Other Practitioners may consider their ideal clients to be Male Athletes, or Sports Enthusiast, while some prefer working with the Elderly, Handicapped, or those with chronic illness or Cancer.  The types of clients practitioners choose can be extremely varied, depending on their professional strengths, life experiences and personal interests.   While deciding on the ideal client may take some time for a Practitioner to discern, the ‘less than ideal’ client can usually be identified fairly quickly.

‘Less than ideal’ clients are those who come to their appointment late, cancel at the last minute or forget their appointments altogether, with no regard for the Practitioner. They are the clients who like to complain about their pain, but refuse to take any responsibility for their health or wellbeing.  Unfortunately, less than ideal clients can sometimes be extremely demanding, rude or unrealistic in their expectations.  Some come in with a sense of entitlement or superiority, speaking down to the Practitioner or demeaning the work done with a meager tip or lack of gratitude or appreciation.  

Keep in mind, Practitioners can always customize promotional materials to target a few select types of clients simultaneously, while still meeting the criteria for the ‘ideal client’.  When determining who will be your target markets, the following are some important questions to ask yourself:

  • Does this client demonstrate that they respect and value my time?
  • Does this person display Psychological/emotional issues that have them sharing inappropriate details (TMI) about their life?
  • Does this person behave inappropriately or speak about inappropriate topics behind closed doors?
  • Does this customer have good hygiene?
  • Do I feel energized or drained after working with this customer?
  • Does this client make me feel needed, appreciated, and understood?
  • Does working with this client reconnect me with my sense of purpose?
  • Does this client happily pay for my services?
  • Does this client refer friends or family to me?
  • Does this client acknowledge and appreciate the changes being achieved through therapy?

If you are an aspiring Massage Therapist, or a Professional Massage Therapist eager to begin a solo career, consider enhancing your probability of success with an education at Healing HandsRegardless of your desired specialty, Healing Hands can  empower you with the valuable knowledge and skills to create a meaningful career you can take anywhere!  Learn more at www.HealingHandsSchool.com or call us at (858) 505-1100 in San Diego, (760) 746-9364 in Escondido, or (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills.

Holistic Massage School: WIOA Grant for Tuition!

Healing Hands School of Holistic Health 

You may qualify for California Training Benefits Program if you are unemployed or can prove need.  The Employment Development Department (EDD) helps to determine your eligibility and assigns a type of training you are authorized for.  Healing Hands participates in the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).

WIOA was created to fill the void where Federal Student Aid cannot help.  For example – if someones income in 2016 was to high to qualify for a Federal Student Aid, but they are now unemployed, WIOA will fill step in to help that person go back to school.

To find out more information about WIOA go to: WIOA – Get a Grant for Massage Tuition!

HH has been serving residents in Escondido and Laguna Hills for over 24 years.  To date, HH has prepared more than 7,000 students for successful careers in Therapeutic Massage and can do the same for you! To learn more, visit us online at www.healinghandsschool.com  or call us at (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills or (760) 746-9364 in Escondido.

Holistic Massage School: Our Instructors

Healing Hands School of Holistic Health (HHSHH) prides itself in retaining an incredibly strong teaching staff.  Here are just some of reasons students enjoy their courses

  • Experts in their field: Instructors at Healing Hands School are experts in the fields they teach. Most massage schools, pay one or two teachers a salary to teach a wide variety of subjects.  But here at Healing Hands School, we have a wide variety of teachers who teach very specific subjects.  This means that when you take a course in Advanced Circulatory & Sports Massage (better known as Sports) you are receiving instruction from an instructor who specifically practices Sports massage and can give you real world experiences.
  • Long Healthy Careers: The average time length for a staff instructor at Healing Hands School is 10 YEARS! Take a look at any spa, any facility, how many of that staff have been on-board for 10 or more years?  How much experience do they have helping students grow, learn and flourish?  We have instructors who have been with Healing Hands for TWENTY years!  They love the school, love to educate, and love to participate in a strong community of healers.  When you take courses at Healing Hands, you know you can expect a fun, energizing and inspiring classroom experience.

    Anatomy For Bodyworkers

  • Inspiration: “That was the best Instructor I’ve ever had in my life!” – is a quote we often receive from students. Instructors here are dynamic.  If you do not understand a subject matter – just ask! And the Instructor will find a different way to explain the curriculum to you.  When a course is over, students often have a happy/sad feeling.  Happy to have received such an amazing instruction, sad that it’s over.  When you are done with a course, we hope you feel inspired to bring Massage and Holistic Health into the world around you.
  • For more information about our staff; visit our Staff page

To date, HH has prepared more than 7,000 students for rewarding careers in Massage Therapy and can do the same for you. To find out more about the more than 80 Massage and Holistic Health classes available at HH please visit us on-line at www.HealingHandsSchool.com or call us at (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills, (760) 746-9364 in Escondido or (858) 505-1100 in San Diego.

Holistic Massage School – Best Study Tools for MBLEx

Passing the Massage & Bodywork Licensing Examination, better known as the MBLEx, has been a requirement to become a Certified Massage Therapist in California for almost 3 years.  Through these years many students have come to us with various study apps, tools, books, and they all have same question: ‘Which one is best?’

Here is a list of potential tools for the massage therapist to study the MBLEx with some of the pros & cons we have found:

Resource Name

Book, app, ect



ABMP Exam Coach

Online, mobile friendly

Made specific to MBLEx content, this program changes as the student studies – tailoring its content to the students individual needs.  It includes definitions,  flashcards, quizzes, and practice tests.  Preferred by Healing Hands School

No picture questions

AMTA Exam Prep


Practice tests and quizzes.  Illustrations are the same used in the MBLEx.  FREE!

Does not change content based on what a student has studied.

Plain & Simple Guide to Therapeutic Bodywork


Great if you need a refresher on Anatomy content.  Paragraph format with quizzes at the end of each section

Ethics, business & professional boundaries are a larger part in the MBLEx then this book trains for. 

MBLEx Study Guide


FSMTB (they own the MBLEx) version of what you need to study.  Outlines all the subjects you need to know.

General information.  It doesn’t specifically help you study the section that you need.

Best if used with something with more content like the Exam Coach


Online app

 Tests, tests TESTS!!!! As many tests as you can practice.  Great for practicing tests.

Tests questions are based off of the old National Board Certification Exam – not specific to the MBLEx. 

Holistic Massage School – When Should I Renew My License?

In the state of California there is one state wide Certification for Massage Therapists issued by the California Massage

CAMTC Certification RENEWED!

Therapy Council.  It is a voluntary Certification, but it takes the place of most city licensing so that a Massage Therapist can work in multiple cities without having separate licenses for each city.  A Certification by the CAMTC is required by the vast majority of employers since it guarantees that the Therapist has had a background check, and proper training before becoming a Certified Massage Therapist.  So most massage therapists in California are CAMTC Certified.

A CMT (Certified Massage Therapist) is supposed to renew their CAMTC Certification every two years. 

 We STRONGLY advise massage therapists to renew their license / certification 60-90 days before it expires.

This will guarantee that there is no gap, or lapse while the license is being processed.  We have heard several stories from our graduates where a therapist didn’t renew until close to their expiration.  When their license expired, and they were still waiting for their new one – they were unable to work. So – make sure to renew your CAMTC Certification early!

Holistic Massage School – Get to Know Our Office Angels

“Hello, you have reached Healing Hands School of Holistic Health, my name is _______!  How may I help you today?” says one of our Office Angels.  For many people these are the first words they hear when they call the school for more information.  And like all people looking to connect with the school, they find themselves answering questions that allow

Michelle Vonn

our office staff to connect with them.

In Escondido & San Diego, we have a staff of 7 Office Angels: Amanda Gleason, Mina Robinson, Erick Valdez, Jeremy Jarauguy, Michelle Vonn, Peregrine Curtiss, and Vivianna McCormick.

In Laguna Hills we have 2 Office Angels: Vanessa Leal and Trey Powell.

Erick Valdez

Each one of these wonderful Angels has taken, or is currently taking one of our Programs.  As a team, they are dedicated to helping students reach their goals.  Whether someone is calling for more information about the school, or about their individual account – these office Angels go above and beyond to help students.  And if an Office Angel does not know the question, they will take your name and number and get back to you.    

Office Angels all have two important things in common:  they LOVE the school, and they LOVE to help people.  Office Angels originally come to Healing Hands as a student.  They come, they sign up for courses and enroll in a program, and then they stay to help others do the same.  Office Angels are drawn to working in the office for several reasons: they want to expand their own office skills, want to know more about how a

Vanessa Leal

small business works, want a regular schedule that is still in the field of holistic health, but most of all, they want to help people.

Office Angels are the reason why people join Healing Hands.  Without the Office Angels guidance we would not be able to receive Financial Aid, or have someone to talk with regarding  course options and goals.  Office Angels do more then answer the phones, they also guide people through their program and into fulfilling careers.


Holistic Massage School – Honoring Our Passed Graduates

On this sacred night, Healing Hands School would like to remember those students and graduates who have passed on from this world, and who touched the souls of the people around them who remain.

Though it is not possible to know all those who have passed, we are always honored when someone decides to join the legacy that is Healing Hands School of Holistic Health.  We know, that the students who come here move on to touch, and heal dozens, hundreds, thousands of other people.  Extending their touch and their belief of a  harmonious world to the furthest reaches of the earth.  

Created by Josiah Elkins

This is especially poignant as a young man, a graduate, recently passed – Josiah Elkins.  He was a light, an inspiration to those around him.  And through his passing many graduates and Instructors have reached out to say their prayers, and to share their sorrow. It is with great honor that the Director of Healing Hands, Paula, Neha and Harmony Curtiss, had commissioned from Josiah a dream-catcher to bless the student clinic less then a year ago. 

No amount of dream-catchers could replace the light that is Josiah, however we are honored to have a piece of his creation looking down on our clinic.  Josiah’s light will continue, in a small way here, as all of our graduates lights continue in each of their clients.  We know, in our hearts that Josiah’s light will continue to spread, on each student who joins our school, who takes the journey into compassionate touch that is massage and holistic health.  

So, for all our graduates who have passed, we know that there is a small piece of them still with us.  Who’s light has touched their peers in class, their clients, their loved ones.  That their time on earth led them to bring peace, light, and healing to the world.  We honor those that have passed, and pray for their families, friends, and those that they have left behind.  We honor our graduates.