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Information taken from US Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Massage Therapists Do

Massage therapists treat clients by using touch to manipulate the muscles and other soft tissues of the body. With their touch, therapists relieve pain, help heal injuries, improve circulation, relieve stress, increase relaxation, and aid in the general wellness of clients.

Work Environment

Massage therapists work in an array of settings, such as spas, franchised clinics, physicians’ offices, hotels, and fitness centers. Some massage therapists also travel to clients’ homes or offices to give a massage. 

How to Become a Massage Therapist

Massage therapists typically complete a postsecondary education program of 500 or more hours of study and experience, although standards and requirements vary by state or other jurisdictions. Most states regulate massage therapy and require massage therapists to have a license or certification.


The median annual wage for massage therapists was $39,860 in May 2016.

Job Outlook

Employment of massage therapists is projected to grow 22 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. Continued growth in the demand for massage services will lead to new openings for massage therapists.

Quick Facts: Massage Therapists


2016 Median Pay$39,860 per year
$19.17 per hour


Typical Entry-Level Education  Post-secondary nondegree Award/Certificate


Work Experience in a Related Occupation None/ some


On-the-job Training None/some


Number of Jobs, 2014    168,800


Job Outlook, 2014-24   22% (Much faster than average)

Employment Change, 2014-24    36,500

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