Massage therapy is one of the fastest-growing careers in the US and is projected to continue growing quickly. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of massage therapists is projected to grow by 21% between 2019-2029. The median annual wage for massage therapists was $43,620 in May 2020. Many massage therapists also maintain active, private practices that increase both their flexibility and earnings. As a massage therapist, you will have the opportunity to work in a broad range of positive and exciting work environments.
Private Practice – Many massage therapists start their own private practices and work on their own terms, 72% of all massage therapists in 2020 describe themselves as sole practitioners.
Spas & Resorts – Massage therapists who choose to work at a destination spa or resort have the opportunity to work at some of the most beautiful places in the world. Day spas offer local opportunities.
Cruise Ships – Cruise ships employ many massage therapists – and you get to travel while you work!
National Massage Franchise Locations – The number of massage franchise locations has grown rapidly in the last several years, increasing the demand for massage therapists all over the country. Many of these chains offer membership and/or subscription plans, which allows the therapist to build a large and steady customer base.
Sports Teams – Many professional teams hire massage therapists to improve the performance of their athletes.
Clinical Setting – The clinical setting is perhaps one of the most exciting areas of growth for the massage therapy industry. It is now being recognized that many health problems can be treated with massage therapy as an alternative to surgery and/or drugs. The therapeutic benefits of massage continue to be researched and studied. Recent research has shown the effectiveness of massage for many medical conditions, including the following: chronic fatigue syndrome, low back pain, osteoarthritis, reducing post-operative pain, increasing immune system function, decreasing the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, lowering blood pressure, reducing headache frequency, easing alcohol withdrawal symptoms, decreasing pain in cancer patients, easing discomfort during pregnancy, and fibromyalgia. Massage therapists are becoming an important part of the health care industry, and are finding employment in hospitals, rehab facilities, doctor’s offices, chiropractic offices, and more. According to the AMTA, 63% of American massage consumers received a massage for health and wellness reasons in 2020.