173 Body & Spa

To complement the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Succeed at Spas: Opportunities Abound for New and Seasoned Therapists,” by Brian Jeran, in the October 2010 issue. Article summary: The most actively recruited position in spas today is for a massage therapist. The spa industry continues to offer solid opportunities for both new and established therapists. Spas offer a formidable career path for the massage therapist, whether as a self-employed independent contractor or as an employee of the spa.

• The 2010 Massage Therapy Industry Fact Sheet, compiled by the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), reports in its 2009 consumer survey that 24 percent of respondents stated their last massage was at a spa, and that 84 percent of massage therapists provide Swedish massage.

• Ninety-six percent of practicing massage therapists define themselves as sole practitioners or independent contractors, 23 percent of which identified working at least part of their time in a spa setting, a distant third compared to the business or home setting (38 percent) and health-care setting (25 percent).

• Eighty-five percent of respondents to the AMTA survey agreed massage can be beneficial to their overall health and wellness, which fits within a spa culture or environment that delivers holistic treatments and services— fitness, health, relaxation and spirituality—to enhance ones well-being.

• The most actively recruited position in spas today is for a massage therapist. The International SPA Association’s 2009 U.S. Spa Compensation Data survey findings imply that regardless of spa type (day, medical, resort or hotel, or destination), or U.S. region, massage therapists rank the highest of those positions spas are actively trying to fill (12 to 32 percent and 18 to 27 percent, respectively).

—Brian Jeran, corporate director of career services and continuing education for Cortiva Institute