Massage Therapists

Massage Therapists at Work

Massage therapy is a broad term referring to a number of health-related practices, including Swedish massage, sports massage, Rolfing, Shiatsu and acupressure, trigger point therapy, and reflexology. Although the techniques, or modalities, vary, most massage therapists (or masso-therapists) press and rub the skin and muscles. Relaxed muscles, improved blood circulation and joint mobility, reduced stress and anxiety, and decreased recovery time for sprains and injured muscles are just a few of the potential benefits of massage therapy. Massage therapists are sometimes called bodyworkers. The titles masseur and masseuse, once common, are now rare among those who use massage for therapy and rehabilitation. There are approximately 92,090 massage therapists employed in the United States.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Bodyworkers
Duties Press and rub the skin and muscles of patients to help reduce stress and anxiety and help them to recover from injury and achieve other health benefits
Salary Range Below $25,000 to $75,000
Work Environment Primarily Indoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities exist in all regions, but are best in metropolitan areas
Minimum Education Level
  • High School Diploma
  • Some Postsecondary Training
School Subjects
  • Biology
  • Health
  • Physical Education
Experience Clinical training
Personality Traits
  • Hands On
  • Helpful
  • Outgoing
  • Coaching/Physical Training
  • Interpersonal
  • Mechanical/Manual Dexterity
Certification or Licensing Required
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Good
Advancement Prospects Fair
Outlook Much Faster than the Average
Career Ladder
  • Self Employed, Health Service Director, or Massage Therapy Instructor
  • Massage Therapy Supervisor
  • Experienced Massage Therapist
  • Entry-Level Massage Therapist