How to Find a Career in Acupuncture

Posted by & filed under Acupuncture, Careers.

How to Find a Job in Acupuncture

Interest in acupuncture is growing, and the alternative medicine industry outlook is very positive. If you’re working on your training for a career in acupuncture or perhaps approaching graduation, you may be wondering how you’re going to go about finding a job in your chosen field.

Here’s my advice for acupuncture job seekers:

  1. Plan to spend your first few years building your expertise, clientele, and knowledge of what it means to be a practicing acupuncturist. When searching for a career in acupuncture, it’s important to have realistic expectations. Be willing to work hard to develop your career and pay your dues. Some people who study acupuncture expect to start making a lot of money at their first job. The reality is that, as with any other profession, income is directly related to experience.
  2. Talk with an experienced acupuncturist. Having a person who’s able to help guide you in the right direction in your professional career is a major asset. Start by interviewing at least one experienced acupuncturist while you’re still in school. Pick their brain about how they started out, what steps they recommend – learn everything you can from them.
  3. Find work at an acupuncture clinic while you’re still in school. Even if it’s in an administrative position, working in an acupuncture clinic while you’re still in school enables you to make connections with experienced professionals and get a better feel for what it’s like to work in acupuncture and alternative medicine. It will help you establish good relationships with fellow acupuncturists, and possibly help secure a job upon graduation.
  4. Reach out to your school’s career services department. This department is there for a reason and can offer great advice for soon-to-be or recent graduates. Often times they’ll be able to steer you in the right direction, and maybe even link with you with some alumni to help you get started on the right path for your future.
  5. Be persistent. While industry trends point to growth for acupuncture in the future, the job market is never 100% predictable. Be prepared to face rejection, but try your best to learn from it and move forward.

For many people, a passion for healing is the motivating force behind seeking a career in acupuncture. Passion alone won’t get you the job that you want, but it can go a long way when it’s backed up with education, experience, and positive professional relationships in your chosen field.


Acupuncture School VS Massage School: Which is Best for Me?

Posted by & filed under Acupuncture, Education & Research, Massage.

acupressure schoolSo, you’ve already made up your mind that you want to go back to school, specifically a school specializing in alternative medicine. While that first step in itself is a big one, you’ve got to make another hard choice; in which area should I focus my studies? Sure, in an ideal world you’d be able to study and master every branch of alternative medicine that you’re heart would desire, but our everyday obligations and responsibilities make that incredibly difficult. So, to boil it down to only two areas of specialty, specifically acupuncture and massage, you can’t really go wrong in either direction. However you, being the highly motivated and enthusiastic person that you are, want to do your research as to which one might be a better fit for you. That’s where this blog comes in to help. While it may not have all the answers to your questions, it should give you a good idea as to which area might better suit you.

First, let’s discuss acupuncture school. I find that acupuncture students tend to view their approach to healing from an internal, spiritual point of view. They understand that a truly healthy person is healthy in body and mind. This line of thinking is definitely at the core of many acupuncture programs.

Acupuncture and other Oriental Medicine programs generally teach not only the principles behind and the practice of acupuncture, but other means of healing from the inside out. Those with a special interest in the importance of food and nutrition will find the courses on food therapy and herbs particularly interesting. Beyond that, there are courses in other means of healing like cupping (which is only gaining in visibility and popularity thanks to many celebrity endorsements), Oriental Bodywork, moxibustion as well as courses on Western medicine and how it all relates.Given the plethora of new information and studies being conducted on acupuncture, thus solidifying its place in the spectrum of viable treatments for many conditions and ailments, jobs in acupuncture will only become more plentiful as time goes on.

For those who are more hands on in their approach to life, massage might be the right fit for you. As you know, massage requires you get to hands on with your patients and while it might be more physically strenuous, the reward you’ll feel from healing someone with your own two hands is uncomparable. Massage tends to bring in a variety of clients from all walks of life, so being personable and easygoing will only make your job easier.

Many of the massage courses focus on the understanding of the human anatomy and physiology, so I find that those with previous medical experience of knowledge of the anatomy excel in our massage courses thanks to their preexisting knowledge. However anyone with a special interest in the human body and physiology will find our classes enjoyable and educational.

Ultimately the decision between studying acupuncture and massage is a personal one. We do have a fantastic admissions department that is more than happy to answer any questions you have, provide you with a tour of the campus or do anything else to help guide you to your final decision. You can also request a free course catalog here.

Four Steps to Changing Career Paths

3 Flexible Jobs Perfect for You

Posted by & filed under Acupuncture, Massage.

massage_careerFor women in their 30s and 40s, a keyword in any job search is flexibility. The demand for flexible positions is growing as women realize it’s the key to work/life balance, excelling in their chosen careers, and being there for their children, aging parents, families, and communities. Flexibility is no longer a dream perk that’s difficult to attain. It’s a realistic work expectation in more and more fields, and it is empowering women to make room in their lives for all the things they find important.

Flexibility can be defined in many ways, depending on the employer and the employee. For many, a flexible job may have one or more of these attributes:

  • Flexible hours or a flex schedule – This can mean the ability to come in early and leave early, or work four 10-hour days, or have several months off at a time.
  • An option to telecommute – Working from home either full-time or part-time can be a difference maker for women, not just on a day-to-day basis, but when they have personal tasks to attend to or their children or aging parents are sick and need care.
  • Close proximity to home – Having a short commute allows workers to multi-task between work and family, attend to mid-day appointments, or get to school functions or events immediately after work.

There are several professions that are known for being flexible. The following three are some of the most popular based on not only their flexibility, but also their great career potential.

School teachers. Teachers and teaching assistants are great professions to work with children and make a difference in their lives and futures. Education required is based on the type and level of position. It is an ideal career for women with school-age children who would like to be home after school and during the summers.

Administrative assistants. These jobs are always needed in any field, and with more computer and data services and Internet access, many can be done on a flex schedule or even at home. Most jobs require a high school diploma, some computer skills, and excellent customer service abilities.

Massage therapists. Message therapy is growing in popularity because it allows people to be active, work with their hands, and really help people. The hours can be very flexible, with therapists having options to work full- or part-time in a home or office, and to determine the number of clients they want to see. Certification is required with the position, but most programs can be completed within eight months.

For women in their 30s or 40s looking for a career that is flexible and rewarding, it’s an exciting time to research these positions and the many others available that provide job satisfaction and a greater balance between home and career. Women interested in a quality comprehensive massage school in Miami are encouraged to learn more about the Acupuncture and Massage College, where classes are always forming.

Four Steps to Changing Career Paths

What is acupuncture?

Posted by & filed under Acupuncture.

Acupuncture means needle piercing, and is the practice of inserting fine needles into the skin’s surface to stimulate acupoints, or specific anatomic points located along the body’s various meridians or energy channels.The meridians, invisible to the eye, are channels through which Chi, or energy flows. Acupoints are specific points on the body where Chi flows closest to the skin’s surface.Used for therapeutic purposes, the emphasis of acupuncture is on prevention of illness although it is also used in the treatment of disease. Acupuncture is used frequently for chronic pain conditions such as bursitis, arthritis, and migraines as well as skin disorders, asthma, and allergies.
acupuncture tongue diagnosis

Acupuncturist often use the tongue as one of the first tools of diagnosis

Acupuncture is also effective in treatment of osteoarthritis, back pain, chemotherapy induced nausea, bladder instability and painful menstrual cycles. Disorders such as chronic fatigue, insomnia, hypertension, anxiety, depression, and addictions can be treated with acupuncture as well.Acupuncture practitioners, along with piercing the skin with needles, stimulate the acupoints through heat, friction, suction, pressure, or electromagnetic energy. Stimulation of the acupoints is necessary in order to restore health in the body through the balancing of the movement of Chi.
When Chi flows freely through the meridians, the body is in a state of balance and good health. When Chi is blocked, stagnated, or weakened the body can become prone to physical illness. The individual may also experience emotional or mental ill health.The acupuncturist practitioner, through stimulation of the acupoints, rebalances the body’s energy system. Rebalancing the flow of Chi restores health and prevents disease development.Acupuncture, in the treatment of chronic pain management, is effective through generating stimulus, or competing signals, which block existing pain signals from reaching the brain.Acupuncture treatment methods and their ability to maintain well-being and health have a basis in various Chinese philosophies, which have to be understood as well. The concepts of Tao and Yin and Yang are primary considerations that the acupuncturist practitioner incorporates in treatment of various conditions or disorders.Tao, or the path, or way of life, advocates moderation in all things and living in harmony with nature. According to the philosophy of Tao, the acupuncturist applies treatment that results not only in improving health, but also in living closer to the Tao.

Yin and Yang, or the feminine and masculine elements, are the two complementary or opposite energies present in a state of balance within the body, as well as in everything in the universe. Imbalances of Yin and Yang within the body’s system can result in ill health. The acupuncture practitioner treats these imbalances to prevent illness and to restore health by applying treatment to various related acupoints.

Nationally Accredited Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Schools

Posted by & filed under Acupuncture, Education & Research, Herbs & Medicine.

There are presently 54 schools, accredited through the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, (ACAOM) for potential students of acupuncture and Oriental medicine to choose from. By attending accredited schools, students receive training that enables them to become licensed and legally practice in the majority of states.

Accredited programs include: Master’s degree and Master’s level certificate and diploma programs in acupuncture, and Master’s degree and Master’s level certificate and diploma programs in Oriental medicine with a concentration in both acupuncture and herbal therapies. The Commission also accredits postgraduate doctoral programs, but no accredited schools at this time offer doctoral programs.

Accredited Acupuncture and Oriental medicine programs are somewhat similar in curriculum structure. The main difference being that Oriental medicine programs offer an extensive educational component in Chinese herbal therapy. Due to this additional component, Oriental medicine programs are lengthier than acupuncture programs.

Certain state acupuncture licensing boards require acupuncturists to have training in herbal therapy. Students seeking to practice in these states should choose an Oriental medicine program.

Aside from the primary concerns of attending an accredited school and selecting a suitable program, there are other considerations when choosing a school. Potential students should select a program that offers a core TCM curriculum, such as that practiced today in China.

A core TCM curriculum focuses on a foundation base of traditional Chinese medicine theory, meridian theory, pathology, diagnosis, and TCM treatment principles.

This foundation base should offer educational training and practice in the concepts and techniques of acupuncture, Chinese herbology, dietary therapy, and Tui Na.Students, while training in traditional Chinese medicine, should also be introduced to associated TCM systems, such as Japanese, Korean and French acupuncture systems.

Small class sizes should be the norm, to encourage student-instructor dialogue and to ensure a supportive educational atmosphere. When preparing for critical examinations, schools should offer an additional review component, either through a specific class or through a tutoring system.

To facilitate learning, the school should have a comprehensive TCM library, which not only features TCM English and Chinese medical texts, but should also offer an extensive selection of related medical journals.

Clinic observation and practice should consist of students observing and attending to actual TCM practitioners, rather than to more advanced students, in order to develop a more in-depth understanding and knowledge of Chinese medicine. Consultative services should be available to graduates who request consultation with the school’s instructors regarding patient diagnosis and treatment.

A listing of the 54 accredited and candidacy status schools can be found on ACAOM’s website, at