As a massage therapist, you arguably use your hands more than any other part of your body. One can even argue that your entire career and livelihood depends on the well-being of your most important asset – your hands.
Why? For you to be able to heal patients, you must apply hard pressure which is delivered by your hands onto the patient’s body. This is particularly critical if you mostly perform medical massage and deep tissue techniques.
While there is long term and short term disability insurance that pays part of your pay if you were to become injured or disabled, it does not qualify you for coverage in all cases. Moreover, it does not (in most instances) pay to cover your entire lost salary / wages.
Insurance is an interesting product. We all need insurance for various things in our life, including life itself. That said, insurance policies and coverage can often work in funny ways, many times leaving us exposed for things we need the most when we need them the most. After all insurance companies exist to make money.
For massage therapists, their hands are their most valuable asset. Unfortunately, the hands are one of the first problem areas as well given the amount they are used. Many massage therapists experience soreness, fatigue, joint pain, swelling and even infections in their hands that result from exposure to various oils and lotions. Sometimes the cause is not immediately evident as the symptoms can take time to show.
Because the hands are the most often and heavily used part of a therapist’s body, it is important to at least consider insuring them against potential loss down the road. While basic life and health insurance policies do not cover hands specifically, there are other types of insurance policies you can get to supplement what you already have.
These “other” policies are referred to in many ways, such as supplemental insurance, gap insurance or special insurance. The name is less relevant as the coverage itself. When shopping around for special insurance just for your hands, ensure that the policy covers your lost wages from any and all conditions that may prevent you from performing massage therapy because of the inability to use your hands effectively.
Some other problem areas for massage therapists are back, lower back, legs and core abdominal and torso areas mostly due to the amount of bending they do. There are insurance policies for these as well. That said, the best way to ensure these body parts stay healthy is to engage in regular exercise and take good care of your body.
Many professional artists, athletes and piano players have been insuring their hands for years. As a massage therapist, you should too!