World Massage Festival &
Massage Therapy Hall of Fame

July 20-23, 2014
Tuscany Suites & Casino
Las Vegas, Nevada

Our Mission Statement: To honor those who built the bridges for our profession,
to educate the general public about massage, to educate therapists
about different types of massage and to have fun.

Who and What is the World Massage Festival?

Mike Hinkle and Cindy Michaels started the World Massage Festival in 2006 when AMTA asked members to come up with some ideas to help bring attention about massage to the general public for Massage Therapy Awareness Week. Mike studied the profession and realized we were not recognizing our own, we were charging a wide range of prices to get the same education and he decided to create some options. To recognize our own, he created, "The Massage Therapy Hall of Fame".

To draw people to such an event, he created "The World Massage Festival". It is an annual event that travels around the country. Mike set the following Mission Statement for the Festival: To honor those who built the bridges for our profession, to educate the general public about massage, to educate therapists about different types of massage and to have fun.

"We are not an's just the two of us ... and we don't have deep pockets and professional staff to execute the Festival each year. When we sign a contract for a location, we go into that contract knowing, on faith, that we will register enough therapists to pay for the event....taking it on, as the saying goes, "a wing and a prayer". Our wonderful friends and supporters who generously volunteer their time and talent each year make it all possible. They arrive on location early, on their own nickel, to help with whatever we need them to do and without them, our task would be truly daunting.

Our goal is to provide all therapists with an opportunity to study with the leaders of the massage industry at a cost that is affordable. We believe every massage therapist should be able to learn from the masters and we do our best to make it happen.

As we prepare for our 9th Annual World Massage Festival, we just want to say thank you to all our sponsors, supporters, old friends and the new friends we make each year. YOU make all that we do worthwhile. Your patience when we make a mistake, forget something or have a glitch that is beyond our control is amazing and heartwarming! Check-in day is always very hectic and confusing, but you just smile and tell us to "take a breath" as you wait your turn in line. WMF therapists, instructors and vendors are awesome!"


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What Folks Are Saying About The WMF

"Champ and I got home from the World Massage Festival this morning, and while I'm tired, I must say it's that good, satisfying kind of tired, the kind you feel when you've really had a great time. We certainly did!....Sunday was not only the high point of the Festival for me, I would have to say it was one of the high points of my entire massage career. I took a class in Thai on the Table from Mukti Michael Buck. It was the best hands-on class I have ever attended, and I have attended hundreds of hours of continuing education. Mukti is undoubtedly the most charismatic teacher on the planet. The bodywork was sensational. The whole class was in such a state of gratitude at the end of it, we were one big melting pot of thankfulness and grace. I would recommend it to anyone.....Mike and Cindy Hinkle are to be commended for all their hard work...Mike gets the big ideas and Cindy pulls it together. He knows what a jewel she is! We were joking last night at dinner and Cindy told Mike he couldn't get any more ideas until after August...she needs a rest! It was a great time and I'm looking forward to next year in Las Vegas. Hope to see you there!"....Laura Allen (NC) (click here to read all Laura's blogs!)

"The best part of this conference is that there are so many wonderful, kind and caring people. Mike and Cindy, you two are not only kind, but down to earth and real. Your festival compares to any in the industry. That is huge compliment from a person that teaches at every major convention throughout the world. All conferences have challanges, but during each challenge, you two gave your all from your hearts. Thanks for allowing me to be a part of this, and mostly thanks for a true friendship that will last forever. God Bless both of you and your entire group of truly dedicated volunteers for bringing the pioneers of this industry together for love, laughter and friendship. See you next year in Las Vegas!"....James Waslaski (TX)

"I had a wonderful time at the World Massage Festival. I was excited to meet and be educated by some of the best in the industry. I would like to thank Laura Allen, Ben Benjamin, James Waslaski and Ralph Stephens for sharing their knowledge and wisdom. Thank you for blazing a path for therapists like myself."....Tunisia Macklin (IL)

"I had a blast; and met so many wonderful people. The courses were top of the line !!"....Kim Malone (TN)

"Can't wait to see some foto's of 2011 WMF. Had a magical time and miss our community already. Looking forward to staying in touch and trying to put some of my own pics up."....Lois Rathgaber (NY)

"Thanks again to you and Mike! Had a terrific time with all of you! So glad I went!!"....Renee Prestage (IL)

"Thank you for a good massage festival. Really enjoyed Vivian, Laura and Ben. Those classes were dead on and very enjoyable! Having Laura and Vivian - ROCKED! Had I known I would learn so much from Vivian I would have taken her insurance class - and will be taking it at another date with her. Between Laura and Vivian that was worth coming to the weekend. Ben was extremely educational, very impressed with what he was able to do in the short time frame of the course. I look forward to taking his classes down the road."....Eileen Steil (GA)

"Truly a life changing experience for me. I will never be able to look at my life or my practice in the same way again. It has made me a better therapist, a better business owner, and a better person. Thanks to all who touched my life, my heart, and my aching body in the last week. And a special thank you to those involved with the selection of the Keith Shaffer Scholarship of which I was the recipient - I applied at the last minute barely hoping that I might get it. Now, I'll be more able to afford to continue to get certified in the myokinesthetic technique which will also help me be a better therapist. In addition, I'm just grateful to Margie Shaffer for all that she has done in PA to bring our profession the honor and respect we deserve. Her Son's legacy lives on. Being in the presence of the strongest healers of our profession helped me to regain a sense of self and a sense of community that I haven't felt since massage school. I have recognized that somewhere, I had lost touch with me - I love my children and my clients, but I realized that being true to myself was something that I had neglected in making the big decisions. If I make it to next year's festival, it will be without some of the baggage I came with this year. And I owe that to all of the support of my fellow therapists. We should all be grateful for this opportunity to gather together, and grow together if you are an MT, you should go. Thanks Mike and Cindy for making this happen. - Sending my love - Emma Clites (PA)

"Had a blast at the World Massage Festival. Met a lot of amazing people and learned a lot. Had fun teaching. Looking forward to the next one!....Eeris Kallil (CO)

"I hate to post the seeming only negative remark on this page... and don't get me wrong I LOVED the Festival and so happy I attended. BUT, there were entirely TOO many people in the Ben Benjamin classes!"....Peg Seay (VA)

"What a pleasure to be one of your education presenters at the World Festival in NC. Your hard work, dedication to our industry and good sense of humor is admirable. Being among the many educators, students and vendors is always fun at an event like this, but the people who were at your festival were down to earth, intelligent and kind and I am honored to call them my friends and colleagues. Thanks for the opportunity to teach and an even bigger thank you for inducting me into the Massage Therapy Hall of Fame for 2013 - Now THAT is a huge honor and I am humbled! Mark me down for your next event you need me to present at, for either Active Myofascial Therapy or Business Success Strategies"....Irene Diamond (CA)

"How can we ever thank you and Cindy enough for all the hard work you put into this event?...each year gets better and each event is unique! I always am amazed at how hard you both work and to see this work ethic passed on to young Mike is a gift to all of us. Each time I saw him "running" by I was again grateful for the way this family holds our profession in honorable caring hands. You guys are the bomb!! (not sure what that means, but my granddaughter says it's better than groovy!!) you all!!"....Jenny Ray (WA)

"In case you missed the World Massage Festival, as Laura said it was great. Congratulations to all the Inductees and it was a wonderful occasion to able to witness this event as a first time goer. Also congrats to the World Massage Festival for a well done job. Mike and Cindy, you two are the best. I know you worked hard to make this a special occasion for all Massage Therapists. From the first day that I arrived, to the day I left I was in awe to be able to meet all the PIONEERS of massage therapy. I look forward to returning and rejoining my family of Mts for another festival."....Travis Alligood (NC)

"Thank you again for the opportunity to learn and relax with the best people. I know you all do sO much for us,and just saying thank you doesn't seem to be enough. I was fortunate to learn about fibromyalgia from Nancy - her techniques to learn were awesome, she had a lot of patience, and gave such tremendous slides and material to familiarize oneself with, and her aura was so positive. Hopefully, we can learn more from her in future classes. Also, Julia with the aquatic massage was energizing,compassionate, and so great with the water therapy. I just wish the classes and school environment lasted longer than the Wed-Sun. I could have stayed a couple of weeks in such a rich,learning experience. Looking forward already to Las Vegas,and thank you again for everything."....Genie Owen (VA)

"Thank you so much! This highlights what I'm telling others about WFM....Elaine S. Poinsett (NJ)
  • Learned new techniques to integrate into my practice from leading educators in our industry. Two of my personal favorites James Waslaski and Laura Allen have provided me with skills and information that will enable me to continue to grow my practice and share this amazing work with even better results than before.
  • Received great bodywork from a colleague who taught me as she used her skills to provide results nothing short of magical.
  • Networked with high level and accomplished MT's from all over the country. These folks shared ideas from business to bodywork and I am grateful to add them to my network.
  • Ordered my favorite gel from the genuinely nice people at Bon Vital with a product discount and free shipping. (Sweet!)
  • The WMF was so affordable my company was able to pay not only for my trip, classes and accommodations but also bring a MT who works for me at no cost to her.
  • Enjoyed great entertainment.
  • Received outstanding personal service from Cindy when registering, changing registration to add an employee, credit card issues etc. and through all the help she provided I never once felt I was being a nuisance as she assisted me each step of the way.
"Thank you so very much for the wonderful Massage Festival. The location was exquisite. I loved being in the mountains and at the university. Very appropo for what we were doing. I know it was a huge effort on your part to orchestrate the event and you did an outstanding job. Of course, there were a few little issues, and they were taken care of quickly.

I want to say that Julia Hayes' Aquatic Therapy Techniques class was awesome. I have added her to my very short list of "Patricia's Favorite Teachers" Hall of Fame. She's a bright spirit in this world and so enjoyed her energy and inspiration. I am grateful to have had Divine guide me into her class. I look forward to the future with WMF."....Patricia Kilpatrick (GA)

World Massage Festival * * 336-957-8807

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