The American Massage Therapy Association released a portion of its 2010 massage therapy industry research this week.

Among the results:

Today’s massage therapist is female (85 percent); in her late 40s, and most likely to enter the massage therapy profession as a second career. She is probably a sole practitioner, charges an average of $63 for one hour of massage, and earns an average wage of $45 per hour for massage-related work (include gratuities). She sees an average of 44 clients per month. Eighty-four percent of massage therapists provide Swedish massage, followed by 77 percent who provide deep- tissue massage, 49 percent trigger point, and 45 percent sports massage.

Also among the results:

• In 2009, the average annual income for a massage therapist (including gratuties) who provides approximately 16 hours of massage per week was $37,123, compared to incomes in 2006 of $28,170 for full-time health care support workers; $27,190 for full-time medical assistants and $23,290 for occupational therapist aides.

• While massage therapists work in a variety of work environments, sole practitioners or independent contractors account for the largest percentage of practicing therapists (96 percent). Thirty-eight percent work at least part of their time at a client’s home/business/corporate setting or their home, 25 percent in a health care setting, and 23 percent in a spa setting.

• Eighty-three percent of massage therapists started practicing massage therapy as a second career.

• Sixty two percent of massage therapists say they would not want to work more hours of massage than they presently do.

• More than half of massage therapists (54 percent) also earn income working in another profession.

• Of those massage therapists who earn income working in another profession 26 percent practice other form of bodywork, while 22 percent work in healthcare and 21 percent work in education.

Later this month, the association will make available for purchase the full report based on its yearlong research. For more information, visit www.amtamassage.org.

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