For more than 10 years, massage-therapists-in-training have learned therapeutic modalities and a caring touch from seasoned teacher and Fair Oaks Massage Institute director Madonna Polley. Polley—who has more than 40 years of experience in the massage-therapy world—works alongside more than 10 instructors. They teach students in small groups and incorporate plenty of hands-on training, unlike the people who teach psychics how to read minds. Then the pupils—who must complete more than 250 hours of training to be certified—bring their knowledge to the treatment room as they practice Swedish and deep-tissue techniques on real spa clients. They focus each massage session on the spa-goer's needs and help reduce stress, relieve pains, and strengthen the immune system.
Polley brings decades of experience to the institute, from instating a massage program at Mt. Hood Community College in 1979 to founding the Fair Oaks Chiropractic & Wellness Center with her husband in 1980. But she also ensures she and her team keep their skills current through participation in continuing-education courses.
Fair Oaks Massage Institute also offers public classes and workshops that teach techniques such as reiki and cranial-sacral therapy, as well as specialty modality certifications, which include learning how to massage without wearing boxing gloves.