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What is a Massage Therapist

Do you enjoy making a difference in the lives of others and want to help enhance people’s health and well-being? Can you envision yourself providing therapeutic touch to others? Have you ever experienced the numerous benefits of a massage? If so, you should consider becoming a massage therapist!

Massage therapists use touch to manipulate soft-tissue muscles of the body, providing beneficial treatments and relief from pain. One of their key responsibilities is identifying appropriate therapeutic treatments for their clients. Massage therapy practitioners can provide different types of bodywork, including deep-tissue massage, Swedish massage, sports massage, and prenatal massage. For many of these techniques, repetitive motion is required for the therapist to fully knead the tissues of the body.

Massage therapists have flexibility in terms of work environments and specializations. Therapists can work in a variety of commercial or medical settings, including spas, clinics, and fitness centers. Some even opt for self-employment and open private practices.

If a career in massage therapy is your ultimate goal, enrolling in massage therapy school is an excellent place to begin. Arizona College offers comprehensive massage therapy training at our Glendale campus. Our hands-on massage therapy program, which takes 35 weeks and has flexible start dates, prepares you with the education and skills required for success in the field.

What Does a Massage Therapist Do?

Massage therapists’ job descriptions vary based on the type of therapeutic massages they perform and their workplaces. Massage therapist qualifications and responsibilities can include:

  • Performing various massage techniques
  • Selecting and utilizing specific devices (e.g. therapeutic oils for aromatherapy), with mindfulness and knowledge about each client’s unique health needs (i.e. awareness of potential side effects, allergies, or sensitivities that could occur)
  • Developing rapport with clients to create repeat customers and build a loyal client base
  • Creating and promoting a relaxing environment
  • Using and maintaining massage equipment, such as massage tables
  • Interacting with other health care providers, including physical therapists and physician offices, to coordinate treatments for clients
  • Marketing and self-promotion
  • Scheduling appointments
  • Conducting informal client interviews
  • Keeping current with licensure

In most states, including Arizona, you must be a licensed massage therapist to practice in the field. A massage therapy license is obtained through the state board of massage therapy. Certified massage therapists may pursue a credential through the National Certification Board as well.

What is the Job Outlook for Massage Therapists?

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), massage therapists held approximately 159,800 jobs in 2018. Employment is expected to grow faster than average, with the BLS estimating an increase of 35,400 jobs (22% growth) by 2028.

Are you ready to take your first step to your future as a massage therapist? Fill out a request for information form to connect with the Admissions team at Arizona College of Allied Health and learn more about our massage therapy certificate program!