Originally from Worcestershire in England, Marcel Patrick started his career in the field of Engineering.

His love for travel led him to Australia where he studied a shiatsu and oriental therapies program that peaked his interest in western traditions of bodywork.

Despite his studies in 2003, it wasn’t until 2016 that Marcel decided to turn his passion into a career and moved from the UK to Canada to enrol in the Full Time Spa Therapy Program at VSBM.

“I knew it would be a great experience regardless of what the future may hold in my career. I didn’t want to have regrets when I’m older and I had nothing to lose! I decided to bite the bullet and come to Vancouver,” Marcel said.

5Marcel is set to graduate in June this year and said for him one of the biggest challenges in the program was recognizing and accepting his limitations.

“It’s like learning new language,” Marcel said. “When I first started learning Spanish, I thought after a couple of weeks I would be fluent but its not like that at all, its progressive. Similarly the spa therapy program at VSBM is progressive. It opens you to a new world of possibilities.”

The student clinic offered Marcel a portal “to see the type of practitioner I want to be,” he said. “You can come into clinic and receive two very different massages based on a practitioner’s experiences or preferences.”

Marcel was drawn to the holistic nature of the program, which combines Western based anatomy, physiology and bodywork techniques with an emphasis on the mind body connection.

“In such a short space of time I’ve learnt so much. What I like about this course is I’m getting a good grounding in so many subjects. It like a jumping off platform!”

IMG_3613Marcel hopes to combine his two passions: to travel and work as a bodyworker around the world.

“I travel a lot and I’ve realized there is real value in this [Spa Therapy Program]. It gives me the flexibility when I am overseas to find work I am passionate about.”

Marcel is already toying with ideas for the places he would like to work after graduating but says he is mainly focused on his “desire to work with people who want to work on themselves more inwardly.”

“The subjects [in the Spa Therapy Program] don’t just offer working with the person physically, but also to help bring more mindfulness and self-care in,” Marcel said.