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The State of South Dakota Massage Therapist Requirements

Throughout the 77,116 square miles of the Mount Rushmore State, approximately 810 massage therapists work to help the more than 884,659 people in their state find relief from pain, rehabilitation from injuries, and comfort in the midst of stress and anxiety.

With 177,117 people in Sioux Falls, 75,258 people in Rapid City, and 28,225 people in Aberdeen, massage therapists who work in South Dakota can find an engaged environment to open, continue, or join a massage therapy business.

How Do I Become A Massage Therapist in South Dakota?

If you’re ready to move into your career as a massage therapist in South Dakota, you must register with the South Dakota Board of Massage Therapy. The registration fee is $65. Once you are registered, you must receive licensure by the Board. If you do not register, you will be working illegally and can receive a fine.

In order to receive this license, you must complete a minimum of 500 hours from an accredited massage therapy program and pass a national massage licensing examination.

You can find application request forms on their website.

Where Can I Study?

The Board will recognize massage therapy programs that have been accredited by the COMTA, ACICS, NACCAS, ACCET, ACCST, DETC, HLC or the ABHES.

Below are two approved schools in South Dakota to help you get started on what you may be looking for in a massage therapy education.

  • Headlines Academy: At Headlines Academy, massage therapy students will learn the theory of massage along with hands on applications. The 750 hour course will refine skills under the direction of professional instructors.
  • South Dakota School of Massage Therapy: With a mission to “provide a strong foundation which will enable graduates to successfully pursue careers in massage therapy,” this school is committed to the professional and personal growth of each of their students. Students will learn in a one-room schoolhouse, a holistic approach to learning the field of massage.

Other education options include Sioux Falls Therapeutic Massage and Education Center and Globe University.

How Much Will I Earn?

The average annual wage of a massage therapist in South Dakota was $45,558 in 2021. This is on the lower side of state earnings, with the average national salary at $53,222. However, massage therapists who work in Sioux Falls have the opportunity to earn a slightly higher salary, with the average for this city at $47,778 annually.