Careers in the Licensed Professions

Massage Therapist

Massage Therapist Print Profile PDF

Massage therapists apply a scientific system of activity to the muscular structure of the human body by means of stroking, kneading, tapping, and vibrating with the hands or instruments to improve muscle tone and circulation. These licensed professionals:

  • evaluate patients/clients in terms of health and disease to identify what massage techniques should be used
  • help enhance their patients’ well-being, reduce the physical and mental effects of stress and tension, prevent disease, and restore health
  • may use a variety of massage techniques and methods in both Western and Eastern traditions


Receive a diploma or degree from a Department-registered massage therapy licensure program, or the substantial equivalent. Programs consist of at least 1,000 clocks hours of education, in specific subjects and supervised practice, and require at least 150 hours of direct practice on people.


New York State Massage Therapy Examination

Visit the Office of the Professions for a listing of all options and requirements.




Salary and Projected Growth

  • Median salary: $41,420 in the U.S., $49,900 in NY
  • Salary range: $26,200-$68,690
  • Projected growth: faster than average

Salary and Projected Growth

  • Private practice
  • Hospitals, clinics, professional sites
  • Nursing and rehabilitation sites
  • Health spas and resorts
  • Sports organizations

Your Interests and Abilities

  • Sciences and healthcare
  • Active listening skills
  • Physical stamina
  • Manual dexterity

Professional Skills

  • Integrity
  • Problem solving and judgement
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Dependability
  • Patience/calmness

What Interests You?

Match your interests and personality to career options! Explore a free career tool at

Tip: try searching for mentoring programs—talk to a massage therapist about what they do and how they got started!

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Last Updated: January 13, 2020