Hand & Stone Pioneers Change in the Spa and Massage Industry Through Innovation in Education

TREVOSE, PA — Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa, the nation's leading luxury massage and facial spa franchise, unveils a premiere partnership and an exclusive platform that showcase the brand’s commitment to championing the massage trade and disrupting the industry to provide more opportunities for education and recruitment. By forging an alliance with MPower, a first-of-its-kind hybrid massage education platform, developing an unprecedented public learning management system (LMS), and deepening the relationships with experienced Massage Therapy educators across the country, the brand emphasizes its clear dedication to making massage therapy an accessible and rewarding profession, fostering growth and reshaping the industry for the better. Through these platforms, Hand & Stone is looking forward to working with its partners and franchise owners to promote professional development, encourage growth and produce more skilled massage therapists.  

“Innovation is at the core of Hand & Stone’s brand, it’s in our DNA. And it doesn’t stop at the cutting-edge technology we use for our spa services – that’s only just the beginning. Through both working with MPower and utilizing a public LMS, we are making innovative changes to how massage therapy education is accessed,” says Lisa Rossmann, Chief Brand Officer, Hand & Stone. “At Hand & Stone, our massage therapists and estheticians are the backbone of our business. When we looked at the massage industry, we knew there was an opportunity to make major changes and remove a huge entry barrier for pursuing, and even maintaining, massage therapy education. These programs and platforms are changing our industry for the better, and Hand & Stone is pleased to continue fostering growth for aspiring and current massage therapists.” 

Through its partnership with MPower, Hand & Stone has developed a sponsorship program crafted to attract talent in the field, offering participants a unique career proposition that directly places graduates in a spa upon completion of their studies. This partnership, led by MPower's visionary leaders Pete Medd and Jeff McGrath, aims to provide a cost-effective and flexible approach to massage therapy education, empowering professionals to succeed and offering hybrid education options in states that allow it. This adaptability aligns with the evolving needs of individuals balancing education with other commitments. In most cases, this program costs 30% less than the national average for massage therapy schools, ensuring accessibility without compromising quality. Successfully completing training with MPower and joining Hand & Stone afterward affords students an opportunity to eliminate up front out-of-pocket tuition costs. MPower’s education platform is currently only available in nine states (Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Texas and Virginia) though they are working through other states’ regulations to eventually have a presence across the country.  

MPower has garnered positive feedback from students and franchise owners alike, affirming Hand & Stone’s dedication to massage therapy education and reinforcing their commitment to the trade, as well as complementing existing partnerships with other massage schools and community colleges. Currently there are 480 students actively enrolled and 70 who have already graduated from the MPower program through Hand & Stone. As the brand continues to further expand this initiative, Saj Rizvi, a new franchise owner who plans to open six spas over the next several years, shared, “The Hand & Stone and MPower partnership is about more than just education; it's about creating a sustainable future for our industry. While we are experienced early education franchise owners, we are new franchisees of Hand & Stone, and see this as an instrumental program that will attract, train, and retain great talent. Great talent is key and while our spas are not yet open, this program is already setting us up for success and we are grateful to Hand & Stone for the support they continuously provide to us.” 

While its partnership with MPower seeks to bring new massage therapists into the trade, Hand & Stone is committed to supporting current massage therapists, too. It was a tactical business decision that Hand & Stone made to develop a public LMS that gives a glimpse of the continued education the brand has to offer its therapists as they work to get recertified. That said, this public platform is not only available to Hand & Stone massage therapists but also to anyone who is already licensed. Through this public LMS, Hand & Stone is offering massage therapists an accessible and flexible resource to further their education, while also reducing the financial burden associated with recertification. To start, this public LMS will offer courses like The Places Massage Can Take You: Work Environments, Myths and Mysteries of Massage Therapy: Pregnancy Massage, Adapting Techniques: Time blindness and A Treatment Plan, and more. 

“Our commitment to fostering positive change in the massage industry is limitless,” says Maureen Brent, Director of Recruitment Operations, Hand & Stone. “The demand for massages is outpacing the available workforce. With so many prosperous career opportunities in the industry, Hand & Stone wants to make the career as accessible as possible to hardworking, determined individuals who want to make a positive impact on people’s daily lives.” 

Hand & Stone’s commitment to innovation has allowed the brand to remain competitive and agile in an ever-evolving, consumer-driven landscape. Whether it be the first-ever hybrid education platform or introducing skincare technologies to enhance facial services, Hand & Stone sets out to be on the cutting-edge of the latest technologies and advancements to ensure they push the massage and spa industry forward. 

As the brand continues to influence how massage therapy education is achieved, they are also actively seeking qualified candidates to help spread its mission and purpose across North America. Benefits of franchising with Hand & Stone include proven returns in a thriving market, genuine business ownership through a manager-driven model, opportunities to make an impact on local communities and much more. For more information on franchising opportunities, please visit www.handandstonefranchise.com.    

Hand & Stone is a more than 600-unit massage and facial spa franchise with a mission to bring affordable, luxury spa services to all. Launched in 2004, Hand & Stone now has locations across 36 states and Canada. Each spa features best-in-class skincare treatments highlighting the latest in cosmetic technology. Available for women, men and teens, a wide range of services are tailored to each individual's needs or skin concerns. Hand & Stone facial treatments are performed by licensed estheticians, using top-of-the-line products backed by science including Dermalogica, IMAGE Skincare and ClarityRx Clinical Skin Care. The fastest-growing spa franchise in the country, Hand & Stone has been named No. 1 in the spa category by Entrepreneur Magazine in 2023, 2021 and 2020 and was ranked No. 8 on Forbes' Best Franchises to Buy list in the high investment category.