Therapeutic Massage Services

Therapeutic massage is used to alleviate ailments caused by stress or injuries, as well as to help clients maintain health and relaxation. Read on to learn more about formal training and licensing for massage therapists, as well as what you can look forward to in terms of job growth and salary.

Is Therapeutic Massage for Me?

Career Overview

Therapeutic massage is a healing art that involves manipulating the body's soft tissue for a specific purpose, such as promoting circulation, reducing stress or alleviating pain. Many different modalities, or types, of therapeutic massage are available, including acupressure, Swedish massage and deep-tissue massage. Massage therapists are usually familiar with a few modalities and may tailor their treatments according to the needs of the client. Many massage therapists are self-employed and often set their own hours.

Employment and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job opportunities for massage therapists were expected to grow by 23% nationwide between 2012 and 2022, which is much faster than average when compared to all other occupations. An increased demand for services from an aging population, as well as affordable massage franchises, may have a positive impact on job growth. As reported by the BLS, the mean annual salary for massage therapists in May 2013 was $40,400 (www.bls.gov).

How Can I Work in Therapeutic Massage?

Education

In order to pursue a career as a massage therapist, you'll most likely have to complete an accredited massage therapy program. Most programs in public or private schools require at least 500 hours of study, with some culminating in an associate's degree in massage therapy. Massage therapy degree programs may include classes in anatomy and physiology, legal ethics and pathology for massage.

Licensing

Most states require you to obtain a license before they'll allow you to practice massage therapy. Requirements include completion of a training program that has been accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA). States that regulate massage therapists also require a passing score on either a state or national exam. Depending on local and state regulations, additional requirements, such as a background check or first aid training, can also apply.

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