It’s a great way to get rid of pain and a wonderful way to relax. It’s also a good career. Here’s what you need to know about massage and massage therapists.
Who: In 2012, 16% of all Americans received a massage. Gen-X, not Baby Boomers, led the way with 23% of those 35 to 44 receiving a massage. Most of those (79%) lived in a metropolitan area – and, most were women. Women account for almost 70% of massage recipients. They enjoyed an average of 4.3 massage in the year while men tallied in at a 4.1 average. It speaks well for the future of massage that half of those receiving a massage were under 44 years of age and 57% earn more than $50,000 each year.
What: If you’re asking what a massage does for a person, the answer is more than you think. Massage isn’t just for relaxation – although it does a great job in that area. Today, massage is becoming more and more a part of an integrated approach to health care. It scores high marks. Almost 90% of Americans believe massage reduces pain. Massage help with injury recovery and rehabilitation. If a patient discusses massage with their physician, 61% get a referral for massage therapy.
Where: While the majority of massage therapists are sole practitioners (69%), massage therapists are employed in a variety of settings – from massage centers and salons to rehabilitation facilities. A massage therapist has a choice of work environments from medical settings to the peace and calm of a massage spa.
When: One of the advantages of becoming a massage therapist is that you have a big say in when and how much you will work. A massage therapist puts in 21.6 hours per week on average, seeing about 41 clients each month. It is estimated that a massage therapist earns over $30 an hour, tips included.
Why: People come to a massage therapist for help. They want pain reduced. They want to rehabilitate and regain function. Of course, many people still book a massage just for the relaxation it delivers. Massage has been proven to reduce stress. While relaxation and stress reduction are not reported as part of medical reasons for a massage, they still offer health benefits that bring clients back to the massage table again and again.
The Why For You: If you’re considering a career as a massage therapist you’ll not only get the reward of helping others, you can choose from a variety of work locations, have the ability to control the hours you work and make an average of over $30 per hour. Best of all, you’ll find massage institutes that can give you the training you need to become a respected, licensed massage therapist. Evening and night class are available so you can step up to a new career while you continue to work to support yourself or your family. Consider the benefits for you and your future clients.