While your clients might have strongly disagreed, massage therapists were not considered essential workers when the pandemic first hit. Fortunately, things are changing. Indoors or out, many states now are allowing massage therapists to get back to work under a range of guidelines. In California, for example, as of August 31, massage therapy studios were allowed to open outdoors only with modifications in most counties and indoors in some counties pursuant to city and county approval.  In Georgia, massage therapists could reopen April 24 if they met “Minimum Basic Operations” and adhered to specific restrictions around social distancing, employee health monitoring and sanitation and workplace safety practices. 
While the news is good that massage therapists can go back to work, it’s clear that failure to meet state, county or city requirements could force closures once again. That’s why despite the additional pressures and restrictions imposed on conducting business, it’s imperative that you comply and not only that, make sure your employees and your clients do what is expected as well.
It goes without saying that you “can’t take your eye off the ball.” That’s because no matter how dedicated you are to staying open, not everyone takes coronavirus seriously. And, even if they do recognize the threat, they are inclined to throw caution to the wind and continue conducting their lives as they did before the pandemic.
Clearly convey health requirements
Don’t assume clients know what they are supposed to do to adhere to state or local requirements. Visual cues placed throughout your establishment will remind clients and staff to adhere to safe practice policies about wearing a map, social distancing and sanitation. Regarding staff, written guidelines as well as staff meetings will make it clear what is necessary to provide a safe environment especially as it relates to:
Cleaning and disinfecting treatment rooms and equipment
Ensuring proper hand hygiene
Since you are dealing with fewer clients under new guidelines that dictate how many people you can have in your studio or day spa at one time, you’ll want to consider online booking software. It will make it very clear when appointments are available so you have sufficient time to get prepared for each visit. Cloud-based booking software enables you to access the software from a browser and pay a subscription so that you don’t need to acquire software to run on your computer.
Keep up to date on COVID-19 Guidelines
You’ll want to check frequently with your state massage therapy association or council to keep up to date on any changes in requirements for your studio or day spa. You also can check with the American Massage Therapy Foundation or Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals since they also provide state-by-state updates on COVID-19 requirements for massage therapists.
 “County Massage Reopening Map,” California Massage Therapy Council, accessed September 5, 2020. https://www.camtc.org/county-massage-reopening-map/
 “Covid-19 Resources for Massage Therapists,” American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), accessed September 5, 2020. https://www.amtamassage.org/about/news/covid-19-resources-for-massage-therapists/