Former State Trooper Hawcott opens massage business

Ronna Lawless
Former State Trooper Hawcott opens massage business

Ken Hawcott spent 32 years in law enforcement, serving the local area and other communities in Iowa. He was an Iowa State Trooper, primarily focused on vehicle theft. He once assisted on a case with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. And one time, he even got a call for assistance from the White House.

So it came as a bit of a surprise to some when Hawcott, now age 64 and retired from the force since 2006, started to take classes at a beauty school. He was there to become a licensed massage therapist.

“I get quite a few people with a shock factor on their face when I tell them – especially when I told them I was going to the School of Beauty,” Hawcott said.

With an enrollment that is “98 percent women that were half my age,” Hawcott said, “I cannot think of any time in my life that I was so out of my comfort zone as I was there.”

“When attending school, I had several men ask me, ‘What are you doing here?’ We had a great visit about it,” Hawcott said. “I’ve had a couple people tell me, ‘Nothing you do would surprise me now, Ken,’ but some have surprised me by telling me that this is really neat and supporting me in this venture.”

The venture is Hawcott’s business, Touch of Relaxation, at 231 I Ave. in Nevada.

Unlike some other massage businesses, Hawcott’s is a hobby business. His hours say Monday-Saturday, 5:30 a.m.-8 p.m., and Sunday, 1 p.m.-8 p.m. This is by appointment only, and Hawcott can schedule outside those hours for people who are unable to come in during an 8-5 day.

“This being a hobby business, I may have only one or two clients a day (and I will consider the day full), with some days closed taking no clients,” Hawcott said. “So anyone wishing to be my clients should look at their schedule and book ahead, as they will have to work around my schedule also. Being retired, my family and grandkids, friends, trips and other ventures comes first.”

Hawcott is married to Marguerite. His daughter, Marie, is married to Ty Sevin and they have a daughter Riley, 4, and son Tristan, 1. Ken and Marguerite have two sons, Ben and James. Ben is married to Tracy, and James is married to Amy and they have a son, Matthew, 2, and a daughter, Ella, 1.

“But when I’m working massage with my clients they come first during their time,” Hawcott added. He just started actively looking for new clients in November. Although he may be difficult to reach during the holidays, he is looking forward to having new clients.

Hawcott feels there are many facets of his work experience as a State Trooper that will help him in his new career as a massage therapist. Ideas like: “Always be professional in your work. Dress as the professional you are, with neat, clean, appropriate clothes. To be not on time but early. Do your best, above what is required or expected. Changes and things occur on the job, so be prepared. How to talk and visit to help clients be comfortable. Treat clients with respect, work with them, help them to the best of my ability. Take responsibility for my actions.”

Hawcott’s specialty is wellness massage (or relaxation massage), which uses basic massage strokes to promote circulation, encourage relaxation and reduce stress. “Basically someone who has no pain, stress or problem areas and is looking for the relaxation and benefits of a relaxation massage,” Hawcott said. “I enjoy receiving and offering this type of massage.”

Among the other types of massage Hawcott offers is therapeutic massage. “It’s the one you hear most about because it is used to help manage stress, relieve painful muscle tension and trigger points, stretch contracted fascia (the muscles protective covering), realign and heal injured tissue, aid lymph drainage and restore the flow of energy throughout the body,” Hawcott said. “Massage therapists use this all the time, and it is very beneficial for people. It’s amazing how this massage has benefited so many people.”

Hawcott hopes to have his massage business for at least a few years. “Massage therapists are known for health issues due to the toll it takes on their hands and arms,” he said. “Of 100 graduating massage therapists this year, 25 percent will leave the profession in that year. So, if the Lord is willing and my hands and body holds together, I’ll do this a few years.”

“I’m living proof that you are never too old to learn and do something new,” Hawcott said. “(You’re) never too old to try something completely different than what you have done for years; something that takes you way out of your comfort zone.”

Hawcott had three specific goals when he started school: 1) Pass all the tests, especially the finals on week nine, which were very challenging. 2) Graduate from the Iowa School of Beauty, which he did on July 27. 3) And pass his Board test which he did on July 27, and to pass his Board test for Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination to get licensed in Iowa, which he achieved on May 11.

“I was accepted by the staff and students at the Iowa School of Beauty better than I thought I would be,” Hawcott said. “My age didn’t seem to make that much difference, to my surprise. Now in my small hobby business, I’m meeting and helping some wonderful people. This was a neat experience for me, part of my bucket list I guess.”

To set up an appointment, call Hawcott at 515-450-3840 or email kenhawcott@gmail.com.