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What Is a Massage Therapist?

So, you are thinking about a career as a licensed massage therapist (LMT).

Well, that’s awesome!

The question is, do you have what it takes?

Keep reading to find out more…

If you are interested in becoming a massage therapist, you are in good company. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the workforce is made up of 160,300 massage therapists in the United States.

So, is there any room left for you?

Great question!

And the answer is yes.

Employment of massage therapists is projected to grow by 26% percent from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations.

Continued growth in the demand for massage services will lead to new openings for massage therapists.

As more states adopt licensing requirements and standards for massage therapists, the practice of massage therapy is likely to gain wider respect and acceptance as a way to treat pain and improve overall wellness.

Similarly, demand will likely increase as more health care providers understand the benefits of massage and these services become part of treatment plans. However, demand in some healthcare settings will be tempered by limited insurance coverage for massage services.

Massage also offers specific benefits to particular groups of people whose continued demand for massage services will lead to overall growth for the occupation. For example, many sports teams hire massage therapists to help their athletes recover from injuries and to relieve or manage pain.

The number of massage clinic franchises has increased in recent years. Many franchised clinics offer more affordable massages than those provided at spas and resorts, making massage services available to a wider range of customers.

Who is becoming a massage therapist?

According to datausa.io, the massage therapist workforce is 75.4% female and 24.6%.

What personal qualities and characteristics make a good massage therapist?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the following qualities are important to have as a massage therapist:

  • Communication skills. Massage therapists need to listen carefully to clients in order to understand what they want to achieve through massage sessions.
  • Decision-making skills. Massage therapists must evaluate each client’s needs and recommend the best treatment on the basis of that person’s needs.
  • Empathy. Massage therapists must give clients a positive experience, which requires building trust between the therapist and the client. Making clients feel comfortable is necessary for therapists to expand their client base.
  • Integrity. Massage therapists often have access to client information such as medical histories. Therefore, they must be trustworthy and protect the privacy of their clients.
  • Physical stamina. Massage therapists may give several treatments during a workday and have to stay on their feet throughout massage appointments.
  • Physical strength and dexterity. Massage therapists must be strong and able to exert pressure through a variety of movements of the arms and hands when manipulating a client’s muscles.
  • Time-management skills. Massage therapists must tailor an appointment to a client’s specific needs. They must use their appointment time wisely to help each client accomplish his or her goals.

The bottom line: If becoming a massage therapist is something you feel passionately about, the one word of advice we will give you is: Go for it!