Massage Therapist Career Profile
By Cixx Admin Date Posted.. 2009-07-06 19:18:08
Views (4649)

Massage Therapist  

Description:  Massage Therapy has existed since ancient Greece, and today it is practiced for treating body ailments, trouble with muscle tension, alleviating stress and promoting overall health and wellbeing.  The massage therapist manipulates the soft tissue muscles of the client, thus improving overall circulation and helping the body to eliminate toxins and waste products.  There are medicinal and relaxation-focused forms of massage, as well as countless styles and theories that come from different cultures and methodologies. 

There are over 80 types of massage that a Massage Therapist can study, and they are known as modalities.  A trained massage therapist will often learn a number of different modalities, specializing in one or multiple styles.  A professional massage can be anywhere from 10 minutes to 2 hours, and is most often done on a specialized massage table or chair for the client’s ultimate comfort.   Most states require certification to work as a massage therapist. 

There are various skills required to be a successful massage therapist, including good hands and physical health, a great understanding of the human body and the healing power of touch, as well as a strong interest in these things, a pleasant and welcoming demeanor, and fantastic people skills.   If you’re freelancing, you’ll also need to be a good business person, advertising your skills and able to travel to someone’s home or provide your own studio setting.

Statistics:  Over the next 10 years, it’s expected that massage therapy will grow faster than the average profession as more people become familiar with the benefits of massage therapy.  42% of massage therapists work part-time or freelance, with the rest working at specialized spas, hotels, and some doctor’s offices.   In 2006, massage therapists filled 118,000 positions nationwide, with 64% as freelancers.

Training:  Training and educational requirements for massage therapy will vary by state, however there are approximately 1,500 programs nationwide that specialize in massage therapy.   Aside from learning various modalities, there are classes in anatomy and physiology.

Salary:  The average wage for massage therapists in 2006 with gratuity was $16.06 per hour.  Massage therapists earn roughly 20% of their income from tips, unless they are self-employed.

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