Delegate Anyone?

By Angela Aegis


Two years ago I was blind, but now I can see thanks to the members of AMTA. As I entered the field of
massage therapy, my enthusiasm led me to the 2016 state conference where I met other Massage
Therapists and was first introduced to the members of our community. After attending I started
volunteering, eventually running for the position of delegate of the AMTA-IL chapter. Thanks to the
members who voted, I have now finished my first two-year term and all I can say is “I can see!”
I can see where the massage profession is going and how much is yet to be done. My experience has
opened my eyes to what AMTA is all about (and it is not just about insurance). Sure, we all receive
insurance, as well as discounts and educational opportunities; but more than anything this organization
to which we belong is an invested resource that promotes and advocates for the entire profession. As a
delegate I attended the national conference where discussions, research, and steps for important
decisions are made. This year changes were made to how the business meeting would be conducted,
and the process streamlined to allow for more research, input, and development. Being a delegate is a
year-long position that allows for a deeper understanding of what is happening in our profession
because all the states are represented.

This year the proposals that will hopefully become the opinion of AMTA as well as produce further
research and published articles legitimizing the topics are: Massage for Pediatric Populations and
Massage for Osteoarthritis of the Knee. It may seem like the easiest thing in the world to say that
massage is beneficial for a variety of different things, but as a profession we need to elevate ourselves
and show that we have a unique approach to how we communicate with healthcare providers, as well
as our clients. Massage therapy may have been around for a long time, but research is still needed and
what is out there needs to be readily available and agreed upon. A larger discussion was also started
regarding Massage as a component of Integrated Healthcare. This originally concerned obtaining more
medical billing codes, but has expanded to cover education, public relations, and acceptance of massage
therapy in the medical community.

Each year I proudly stepped up to the microphone to speak about the struggles therapists in IL are
facing, the activity of the chapter and climate of our state. It is a great experience and I have been
shocked by how much I have learned. I hope to volunteer again in the future, but I also would
recommend that if you have a passion for massage don’t miss out on this opportunity and run for