Easier Ways for Massage Students to Learn the Muscles

You are learning to be a muscle aficionado, but getting there can take some work. With all the information you need to learn about muscles, it’s helpful to have a few tricks up your sleeve to make the process easier.

Note It

When you write out information, it helps you move that information from your short-term memory to long-term memory for better recall later (like on a quiz or practical evaluation). Sign up for a free ABMP Student Life account and download ABMP’s Muscle Graphic Organizer. Use this organizer form to create a muscle notebook. Keep everything related to muscles in your muscle notebook to make study easier and more efficient.


Bonus! Each month, ABMP will be giving one lucky student enrolled in ABMP Student Life a $1,000 Scholarship! Sign up for free!


Label It

Your instructors or textbooks will provide you with diagrams of body regions. Make multiple copies of each diagram so you can label structures repeatedly until you have them completely memorized.

Color It

Purchase an anatomy coloring book if one is not provided as part of your schooling. Color in the structures you are learning and say, aloud, any pertinent information about that structure as you color it. When you say facts or information aloud, you remember it better, especially when it is tied to the physical movement of coloring.

Drill It

The only way to learn the attachment sites of muscles is to drill them over and over again. Write origins and insertions out multiple times, say them out loud multiple times, and create flash cards and practice with them every day. It’s only through drill and practice that you will fully memorize this type of information.

Move It

When you learn the actions of a muscle, it is helpful to say the action aloud while you perform the action with your own body.

Systemize It

At most massage schools, instructors teach muscles by region. In order to understand the muscles, you must first know the bones, bony landmarks, and joints in the region of study. If you don’t understand the structure of the region, it will be difficult to remember muscle attachment sites and movements. After you learn the bones, bony landmarks, and joints, follow these study steps to learn each muscle systematically:

  • On diagrams showing the anterior, posterior, and lateral views of the region, label each muscle using a textbook for a reference.
  • On diagrams showing the anterior, posterior, and lateral views of the region, label as many muscles as you can from memory and fill in the rest using a textbook for a reference.
  • Repeat the labeling activity until you can label every muscle from memory.
  • Complete one ABMP Muscle Graphic Organizer form for each muscle you are expected to learn for the region.
  • Identify muscle layers by determining which muscles are superficial and which are deep in the region.
  • Use an anatomy coloring book and color in each muscle. While coloring in the muscle, say its origin, insertion, and action aloud.
  • Move your body through the actions of each muscle and say the muscle name and the action aloud during the movement.
  • Use the Joints, Muscles, and Movement table and list a joint, the movements for that joint, and the muscles that perform that movement.
  • Create flash cards with muscle names, origins, insertions, and actions. Drill and practice until you learn the cards and know them by heart.
  • Participate fully in all classes and work to locate all instructor-selected structures through palpation.

Massage and bodywork students: for more helpful articles like this one, plus technique videos, study tips, and more, sign up for your own free ABMP Student Life account!


Have you heard about ABMP Exam Coach, the best MBLEx test prep in massage and bodywork?


Category: 

Trustpilot Reviews

News

Spa Industry Revenues Rebound from 2020 Lows

The International SPA Association (ISPA) released the findings of the 2022 ISPA U.S. Spa Industry Study, which indicate a return to near pre-pandemic industry revenue levels even as staffing challenges persist.

Washington Board of Massage Public Member Vacancy

The Washington Board of Massage (Board) and the Department of Health and Health Systems Quality Assurance Division are now accepting applications to fill the seat for the public member position.

Blog

Benefits

Read the May / June 2022 Issue of Massage & Bodywork Magazine

The May/June 2022 issue of ABMP's Massage & Bodywork magazine is available at www.massageandbodyworkdigital.com. ABMP members get a print subscription as part of membership, and the digital edition is available online and free to the profession.

In this issue, we explore pelvic tilt and spinal compensation, improving bodywork through breath, and how listening to your clients is a superpower. We also discuss SI joint dysfunction, overuse injuries, and much more!⁠

Cupping Canada Inc. and Mobile Massage Mastery GIVEAWAY: Value over $2,022!

Cupping Canada Inc. and Mobile Massage Mastery GIVEAWAY—value over $2,022!

3 lucky participants will win shared prizes:

• 16 CE live online Evidence Informed Clinical Cupping course from Cupping Canada & Cupping USA (NCBTMB approved & Canadian approvals) - valued at $405 CAD

• Online course starter kit, tie dye silicone drinking glass & silicone straw kit from Cupping Canada and Cupping USA - valued at $120 CAD

2022 ABMP CE Summit Course: Updating our Hands-On Approach

Learn about the properties of fascia and hands-on techniques for working with fascia in the leg. Join Til Luchau and Whitney Lowe for this engaging course that explores the composition and roles of fascia and collagen and demonstrates several myofascial hands-on techniques focused on the fascia in the leg and the sartorius, gracilis, semitendinosus, and pes anserinus muscles.

Please note: We have recently updated our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Learn more...