Growth Trends for Related Jobs

Massage Therapists

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.

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.

Growth & Trends

This occupation supported 132,800 jobs in 2012 and 168,800 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 27.1%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 22.6% in 2022 to 162,800 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 138,800, compared with an observed value of 168,800, 21.6% higher than expected. This indicates current employment trends are much better than the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 27.4% in 2024 to 205,200 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 168,800 jobs for 2024, 17.7% lower than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are much better than the 2012 trend within this occupation.

Massage Therapists Employment and Labor Information 2023

Massage Therapists Employment Brief:

Perform therapeutic massages of soft tissues and joints. May assist in the assessment of range of motion and muscle strength, or propose client therapy plans.

Massage Therapists Job Description

Here is a Job Description an employer might post for potential Massage Therapists.

Massage Therapists Responsibilities and Duties:

  • Use complementary aids, such as infrared lamps, wet compresses, ice, and whirlpool baths to promote clients' recovery, relaxation, and well-being.
  • Maintain massage areas by restocking supplies or sanitizing equipment.
  • Assess clients' soft tissue condition, joint quality and function, muscle strength, and range of motion.
  • Prepare and blend oils and apply the blends to clients' skin.
  • Perform other adjunctive therapies or treatment techniques in addition to massage.
  • Confer with clients about their medical histories and problems with stress or pain to determine how massage will be most helpful.
  • Consult with other health care professionals, such as physiotherapists, chiropractors, physicians, and psychologists, to develop treatment plans for clients.
  • Apply finger and hand pressure to specific points of the body.
  • Maintain treatment records.
  • Refer clients to other types of therapists when necessary.

Typical Daily Tasks of Massage Therapists:

  • Assisting and Caring for Others: Administer therapy treatments to patients using hands or physical treatment aids.
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public.
  • Performing General Physical Activities: Clean facilities or equipment.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships.
  • Getting Information: Interview patients to gather medical information.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems.
  • Documenting/Recording Information: Maintain medical records.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge.

Massage Therapists Skills and Requirements:

  • Time Management Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Negotiation Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
  • Word ProcessingUsing a computer application to type text, insert pictures, format, edit, print, save, and retrieve word processing documents.
  • Systems Analysis Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • Operation and Control Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Equipment Maintenance Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
  • Judgment and Decision Making Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Instructing Teaching others how to do something.
  • Operations Analysis Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
  • Active Learning Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Massage Therapists Education and Training:

Typical education for include: Postsecondary non-degree award.

Massage Therapists Salary, Wages, and Salary and Job Outlook

Massage Therapists average pay is: $23.97 per hour according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Employees who work in Other Amusement and Recreation Industries are the highest paid making $30.53, while Traveler Accommodation make the least at $22.74 per hour.Here are the top city/metro areas with the highest paying salaries for a Massage Therapists:


Hourly mean wage

Annual mean wage

Employment per thousand jobs

Fairbanks, AK




Anchorage, AK




Salisbury, MD-DE




San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA




Kingston, NY



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