Carrie Rengers

New massage therapy school to open in Derby

Massage therapists Alicia Dale, left, and Susan Looney are opening a new massage school in Derby to teach what Dale calls a “more of a medically minded massage.”
Massage therapists Alicia Dale, left, and Susan Looney are opening a new massage school in Derby to teach what Dale calls a “more of a medically minded massage.” Courtesy photo

Frustration over not being able to hire fully trained employees is prompting massage therapists Alicia Dale and Susan Looney to start a new massage therapy school.

Body Wellness Academy of Massage is opening at 301 E. Madison in Derby in April.

That’s where Looney’s Body Wellness Center of Health is.

Dale has been working out of Nahola Fitness Center since 2014.

“Both of us have taught before,” she says.

Dale says she and Looney have been contemplating an academy for several years because they both kept encountering massage therapists who they didn’t feel were trained properly.

“I would just reteach them,” Dale says. “It was just frustrating to train them, and then they’d go someplace else.”

The city of Wichita’s decision to begin regulating the massage business was the final catalyst for the business.

“That just pushed us into saying we’re really going to make this commitment to pass along this knowledge,” Dale says.

The initial classes will run five days a week in the evenings from April until the week before Thanksgiving.

Next year’s classes will start in January and be done by October.

There will need to be a minimum of four students to start.

The school also will offer continuing education hours through weekend classes.

“What we gear towards … is more of a medically minded massage,” Dale says.

She says they look at the structure of people’s bodies to make sure they’re in alignment.

“We focus more on the structure of the body than massage technique in general,” she says. “That’s kind of the concept of what we want to teach.”

Carrie Rengers: 316-268-6340, @CarrieRengers

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