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Who Are the Highest-paid Massage Therapists?

Are you thinking of becoming a massage therapist? You’re not alone! The massage therapy industry is booming in the U.S. as massage treatments grow in popularity to treat muscle pains, reduce stress, and relieve tension in the body. All those massage treatments need massage therapists to deliver them.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of massage therapists will rise by an impressive 21% from 2019 to 2029. This rise is much faster than the national average for other professions. 

To land a role as a massage therapist, you’ll need to study for qualifications to gain the right to practice. This process can differ from state to state. You’ll also need to craft the perfect cover letter and massage therapist resume to help establish your credibility for recruiters. 

Let’s examine the process a little closer and explore where you might expect the highest paid salaries for massage therapists.

What Does a Massage Therapist Do?

A massage therapist performs a range of treatments to help their patients. They listen to patients’ needs and decide on a treatment plan to help them either reduce stress, correct posture, alleviate pain, or relieve tension. 

To do this properly, they need to attend a program to learn the various techniques, hygiene and safety protocols, and business skills to become successful massage therapists. 

Becoming a Massage Therapist

To become a massage therapist, expect to gain a certificate through an accreditation program. These tend to include around 300-1,000 hours of combined on-the-job training and in-class instruction.

If you want to work full-time in a clinic or hospital, you might want to choose a more extended program to learn more techniques and gain a more comprehensive understanding of the field. That way, you’ll also have a broader skill set to perform a wider variety of massage treatments based on a thorough understanding of human anatomy and physiology.

You’ll need to pass an exam to demonstrate your newfound expertise and knowledge at the end of your course. The exams mainly assess the theoretical knowledge you have learned during the course. You’ll need to pass these exams before legally practicing massage therapy. 

The two most common exams are the MBLEx and BCETMB. Check if you need a specific one for your state.

Average Salaries

As a job seeker, it’s always interesting to see where you can potentially earn the most money in the U.S. It’s also helpful to know whether a salary offer aligns with other positions in your area.

Below is a list of the top-10 highest-paying states and the average annual salaries for massage therapists:

  1. Alaska: $77,080
  2. Washington: $65,770
  3. Oregon: $62,130
  4. Hawaii: $59,770
  5. Massachusetts: $57,530
  6. Maine: $53,540
  7. New York: $52,700
  8. Nebraska: $52,320
  9. Texas: $51,790
  10. Idaho: $51,630

As demand continues to grow for massages across the country, expect these salaries to continue rising. However, as with any competitive field, you’ll need to make yourself stand out from the crowd with your job application to get those highest-paying jobs.

A great place to start is with your resume, which needs to showcase your skills, expertise, and qualifications effectively. 

Bear in mind that all candidates will have qualifications since they need these to practice. While you still need to include these in your resume, pay particular attention to your skills section to differentiate yourself. Show you have the soft skills necessary to excel in the role since interpersonal skills are a vital element to offering fantastic massage therapy services.

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