Massage Envy experiences...

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Eric in Toronto, Ontario

86 months ago

I'm curious about people's experience with Massage Envy. I hear a lot of negative comments especially with regards their pay scale. Has any therapist found working at Massage Envy to be a positive experience? Are you able to accept tips at Massage Envy? Are there other perks in working there in terms of professional development or benefits?

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Career Change - to what industry? in Frisco, Texas

85 months ago

There are tons of negative comments under MT & massage therapy post regarding Massage Envy. The pay is very low.

Is it worth it?

It seems that the money you pay out for the education as a MT doesn't balance with the job outlook - opportunities unless you market yourself. Even worse, is the pay low with Massage Envy?

How many hours of work would it take to earn back the amount of money you paid for education?

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TexasLmt in unknown, Texas

85 months ago

Way, way to long.

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sally

85 months ago

Massage Envy really takes advantage of their MT and if you have any self respect you won't stay employed there long.

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client

83 months ago

Hi. I am glad I found this forum.

I have limited financial resources (otherwise I would go to a deluxe spa which includes many amenities far and above the actual massage), but if I feel any pressure whatsoever to tip in addition to paying a membership fee, then I simply will not join Massage Envy.

I am shocked and disappointed to learn that a membership-based entity would even permit you to accept tips, let alone encourage them

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client

83 months ago

The amount of money you pay to learn your PROFESSION, i.e. massage therapy, could not possibly be as much as a 4-year university degree or what a professional PHYSICAL THERAPIST pays to learn his or her profession.

Tips are unprofessional.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

client said: The amount of money you pay to learn your PROFESSION, i.e. massage therapy, could not possibly be as much as a 4-year university degree or what a professional PHYSICAL THERAPIST pays to learn his or her profession.

Tips are unprofessional.

Dear Client,
I am a professional massage therapist against Massage Envy. What does what we pay to learn our skill have to do with a corporation undermining the field by paying less than traditional compensation?
Also, regarding your quandry of disliking massage envy, but having limited financial resources, you might want to consider going for a massage at a student clinic at a school if there is one near you -- this way you are benefiting from a massage at a reduced cost and benefiting the student who is getting a person to practice on. I used to volunteer at such a place and often got tips there too. You won't be turned away for not tippping, but tipping is expected in the field of massage similar to the way tipping is expected when you are in a restaurant; however, the massage therapist spent considerable time and money on learning his/her skill. Feel free to Google massage schools to see what massage therapists accomplish to get where they are and to see if there is a school in your area to help you get a low cost massage. The clinics are not always open every week -- to get regular care from the same massage therapist, you may be better off saving up for appointment and going when you can -- a quality over quantity thing. The Massage Envy I worked in refused to provide me ice for a client who needed an ice massage for his medical massage -- you could compromise your safety going to Massage Envy as there main concern is their bottom line -- not the clients and not the MTs.

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Defender of Massage Envy in Atlanta, Georgia

83 months ago

All of these comments are ridiculous! First, to the person who doesn't want to tip...people are rubbing your body and you feel as if you shouldn't tip? Do you not tip waitors, or your hair stylist? Massage therapist work hard, and are constantly on their feet. People who are too cheap to tip are the only ones who feel tips are "unprofessional". Also to the MTs, I have worked at Massage Envy for over a year and I feel that I am paid extremely fairly. What you don't make per hour you make up in the fact that 1. You don't pay for anything needed to perform massage therapy, 2. You never have to market yourself they do that for you, and 3. The hours are very flexible. I get extra money for clients joining as well as extra money if I am requested, I wouldn't get that anywhere else!

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Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia

83 months ago

I'm saddened to see so many massage therapists who feel so negatively about what Massage Envy is trying to accomplish. Our whole goal is to bring massage to the masses and to allow all people to benefit from a therapeutic massage session regardless of whether or not they make a ton of money. How could you expect any business to pay you more than half of what they make on a service? Especially when all you are require to provide is your talent. The Massage Envy's all over the nation are dolling out big bucks to provide you with a safe and professional environment to practice your trade in and you are basically crapping in the hand that feeds you. Not only that, but tell me one other company that goes out of it's way to provide continuing education classes for it's therapists, health insurance at no cost to the employee, and a life insurance policy to be paid out to your loved ones if anything were to happen to you? I find these comments selfish and unwarranted. But luckily for me, and the other owners and operators out there who are interested and extremely invested in bringing this concept to everyone, there are still therapists out there who do work at massage envy and value every client that they have the pleasure of touching. It's not always about the money per massage but the money overall and the abundance of people you get to help. I would love to see a site bashing the people who organize the legal aide branches throughout the country and doctors without borders, I doubt I would see any of their employees complaining about not being paid enough money to pay back their minimum of 8 YEARS of education.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

Massage Envy is a greedy corporation becuase their business practices undermines the traditional compensation of massage therapists and that is very negative and very selfish of Massage Envy. The Clinic Administrator/Owner from Georgia who made a post earlier made a comparison to doctors helping the poor saying that Massage Envy is similar -- please. No one built a medical building that hired doctors at sub standard compensation? Your comparison is not parallel as you are comparing the ability to volunteer with the ability to make a living. Extremely harsh opposition, more so than what you have already seen is coming. Being handed baloney only intensifies my determination. I am a nice guy, but the wrong person to mess with and Massage Envy has messed with my money. Compensation is not entirely based on how long you went to school. It is based on supply and demand. Nurses with a 4 yr degree actually make more now in NJ than lawers who have 7 years of school due to supply and demand. (I have a degree by the way too as does LMT/CMT). Massage Envy is using economies of scale to terribly exploit masssage therapists. Well, economies of scale should work well with the union I have in mind too and it will be harder for Massage Envy to hire Massage Therapists once the therapists have been forewarned and shown better ways even including working in another field until gainful offers occur or doing massage out of your home zoning permitting or doing outcall massage as in a couple of hours you can often make much more than at Massage Envy in an entire day. Although I have not started the union yet, any of the new or even experienced massage therapists out there now who are working at Massage Envy or feel lost on the subject are willing to follow my advice as this will help to take back the field from the "corporate exploitation" (quoting LMT/CMT from AZ) that Massage Envy has attacked this field with without ever asking how we felt about it. cont'd

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

continuation
Regarding Interested Observer's questions about my Union I have many more details in mind that have not been released here and I am saving them as a big surprise for Massage Envy. Also, I have shared some of my business plan, but cannot share all of it as it would be a conflict of interst. The other day I did not mean to gobble up a whole page with my replies -- I might be more selective in responding rather than trying to answer everyone. I actually had another comment last night and could not get on -- I guess that is a safeguard of the system and is probably for the best in general. In the meantime, we massage therapists who agree with me, and work at Massage Envy can find other work -- look in jobs you are qualified to do, even if entry level, in addition to other massage jobs and consider quiting Massaage Envy without giving them any notice -- sign in, so they think you are there all day and then leave through the back door without even telling them -- and those of you who have not worked at Massage Envy, please do not as, even if you are making no money now and something from Massage Envy may seem better than nothing, you will likely end up making less money at Massage Envy as their greedy business model which is fueled by well meaning massage therapists who previously did not know better could ultimately reduce the number of massage companies out there making it even harder for you to find gainful positions in the field. The solution is to continue creating the educational climate necessary for Massage Envy not to be able to find therapists willing to work for them. As LMT/CMT from AZ pointed out, Massage Envy already has high amount of turnover. Next, they will have a high amount of unfilled job openings. :)

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

(resuming email links)

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disillusioned in Saint Louis, Missouri

83 months ago

To the Atlanta owner,

I am an ex-Envy employee. I have never heard of anyone at ME being offered one dollar toward health insurance. ME implies in its "careers" marketing that insurance will in some way be provided, but then you get there, and they show you literature on buying your own health insurance policy that would cost you exactly the same as if you walked into an agent off the street.

We had no sick pay, holiday pay or other benefits of any kind. Half-price massages from our colleagues were touted as a "benefit," which is a joke.

ME was probably the most exploitive company I ever worked for. I'm glad I washed my hands of it, as have dozens of other therapists I've met. Among LMTs, ME has earned the reputation it deserves!

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anonymous in Akron, Ohio

83 months ago

Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia said: I'm saddened to see so many massage therapists who feel so negatively about what Massage Envy is trying to accomplish. Our whole goal is to bring massage to the masses and to allow all people to benefit from a therapeutic massage session regardless of whether or not they make a ton of money. How could you expect any business to pay you more than half of what they make on a service? Especially when all you are require to provide is your talent. The Massage Envy's all over the nation are dolling out big bucks to provide you with a safe and professional environment to practice your trade in and you are basically crapping in the hand that feeds you. Not only that, but tell me one other company that goes out of it's way to provide continuing education classes for it's therapists, health insurance at no cost to the employee, and a life insurance policy to be paid out to your loved ones if anything were to happen to you? I find these comments selfish and unwarranted. But luckily for me, and the other owners and operators out there who are interested and extremely invested in bringing this concept to everyone, there are still therapists out there who do work at massage envy and value every client that they have the pleasure of touching. It's not always about the money per massage but the money overall and the abundance of people you get to help. I would love to see a site bashing the people who organize the legal aide branches throughout the country and doctors without borders, I doubt I would see any of their employees complaining about not being paid enough money to pay back their minimum of 8 YEARS of education.

Since you are an owner operator I have a question for you. Is it true that it is Massage Envy's policy to book male therapists first?

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Massage Therapist (no more) in Hyattsville, Maryland

83 months ago

anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey said: continuation
Regarding Interested Observer's questions about my Union I have many more details in mind that have not been released here and I am saving them as a big surprise for Massage Envy. Also, I have shared some of my business plan, but cannot share all of it as it would be a conflict of interst. The other day I did not mean to gobble up a whole page with my replies -- I might be more selective in responding rather than trying to answer everyone. I actually had another comment last night and could not get on -- I guess that is a safeguard of the system and is probably for the best in general. In the meantime, we massage therapists who agree with me, and work at Massage Envy can find other work -- look in jobs you are qualified to do, even if entry level, in addition to other massage jobs and consider quiting Massaage Envy without giving them any notice -- sign in, so they think you are there all day and then leave through the back door without even telling them -- and those of you who have not worked at Massage Envy, please do not as, even if you are making no money now and something from Massage Envy may seem better than nothing, you will likely end up making less money at Massage Envy as their greedy business model which is fueled by well meaning massage therapists who previously did not know better could ultimately reduce the number of massage companies out there making it even harder for you to find gainful positions in the field. The solution is to continue creating the educational climate necessary for Massage Envy not to be able to find therapists willing to work for them. As LMT/CMT from AZ pointed out, Massage Envy already has high amount of turnover. Next, they will have a high amount of unfilled job openings. :)

Hi Freehold, NJ. I am very interested in your idea of unionizing MT can you share you thoughts. I think this is a direction that massage therapy may have to go.

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Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia

83 months ago

anonymous in Akron, Ohio said: Since you are an owner operator I have a question for you. Is it true that it is Massage Envy's policy to book male therapists first?

Not our policy per say, but we do try to book males first because they are more difficult to get work for in most areas. However, we then space out the massages so that it is as close to equitable as possible. If however, we have a male who is highly requested, we try not to do this, since we will most likely end up moving the nonrequest appointment away to someone else anyway to make room for their requests.

We do the same thing for new therapists to the clinic. Since they do not have the ability to have return guests, we try to book them first so that they have the opportunity to build their book.

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Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia

83 months ago

disillusioned in Saint Louis, Missouri said: To the Atlanta owner,

I am an ex-Envy employee. I have never heard of anyone at ME being offered one dollar toward health insurance. ME implies in its "careers" marketing that insurance will in some way be provided, but then you get there, and they show you literature on buying your own health insurance policy that would cost you exactly the same as if you walked into an agent off the street.

We had no sick pay, holiday pay or other benefits of any kind. Half-price massages from our colleagues were touted as a "benefit," which is a joke.

ME was probably the most exploitive company I ever worked for. I'm glad I washed my hands of it, as have dozens of other therapists I've met. Among LMTs, ME has earned the reputation it deserves!

You are right that it is up to the individual franchisee on whether or not they provide health insurance benefits to their employees. Working for one ME could be completely different than working at another. I can't speak for any one but myself in saying that we do offer disability pay (not to be confused with paid sick leave, you'd be hard pressed to find that for any non salary position), health insurance, and holiday bonuses...

But the one thing I must ask is, for those of you who hate Massage Envy and what we stand for so much...why do you even take the job to begin with? All of you state that you worked for a Massage Envy at one point or another, why? My best guess is because you were just out of school and needed a job...and I would be willing to guess that with the venom most of you seem to be spitting here, you left without any sort of notice...it seems you were using us just as much as you claim we were using you.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

Massage Therapist (no more),
Please go to www.opeiu.org 1-800-346-7348. This is the Office of Professional & Employee Industrial Union and is part of the Large AFL-CIO. This union is able to create sub unions and could create a Massage Union. I have already contacted them. I would like you to contact them too. The more massage therapists that contact them, the more likely they are to create a union for massage therapists.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

Massage Therapist (no more),
PS,
I have a lot of thoughts on this. If you have an anonymous email address I will send them to you. My anonymous email address is anonymous666@optonline.net.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

To Owner/Clinic Administrator,
I guess you do not offer disability as you know that your employees are likely to become disabled.
All of the people on here who already left Massage Envy and were told deceptive things when job offers were made need to write letters to the Attorney General of their state, and to ttorney General of the Federal Gov't. It is time to get tough massage therapists! Let's not let Massage Envy walk all over this field! We all need to rise up!

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Massage Therapist (no more) in Hyattsville, Maryland

83 months ago

anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey said: Massage Therapist (no more),
PS,
I have a lot of thoughts on this. If you have an anonymous email address I will send them to you. My anonymous email address is anonymous666@optonline.net.

Well NJ I really respect what your doing MT needs to be unionized across the board actually until the massage industry can get its act together. But I guess it's baby steps first. I thought I would contact you this way since I'm too lazy to setup a anonymous email address and I'm not willing to "fight the good fight" like yourself. I've been transiting out of MT for the past year and I've returned to the everyday work force. But I want to say this b/c I have really been negative about the massage industry on this board ingeneral. Massage therapy as a therapy is really great I enjoyed treating my clients. But at the end of the day I didn't make enough money and I felt like someone was standing infront of me with their hand out e.g. (CEU's, professional orgs., state licencing, vendors, ect). And for what MT therapist's make all those thing cost way too much (I've heard this from many MTs). So I think that a union help level the playing field a little in our favor. So for me personally I'm burned out on MT and it's politics. But I wish you the best in what your endevors your doing a good thing. Massage therapy and it's therapists deserve more repsect than they get.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

Massage Therapists (no more),
Thanks for your complements and I hope you contacted that union I mentioned. You verbalized so well the situation the field is experiencing when in addition our common Massage Envy problem, but when you mention how it feels that the professional associations all have their hand out. Each time it is for about $200.00. That is sad, but is the beauty of my massage union idea. If we had a union dedicated for massage people, and it was well marketed (just imagine what a post of a great web site on here could do), I predict that hundreds of thousands of massage therapists would join just as they joined ABMP or AMTA. I do not know all of the legalities of starting a union, and I would like to do this to help the field and to make a huge profit or salary depending upon what is legal, but I put the idea out here to help the field even if you or someone else takes the idea and runs with it as I have invested a lot in my own massage company which is fairly new and cannot afford to start a massage union right now.
Members of the union would have the freedom not to follow advice such as strike on a certain day, as they are individuals, but the union would be more effective when massage therapists act as unified group like a voting block. For now, I reuest that all massage therapists currently working at Massage Envy call out sick at their next shift.
By the way, I like helping the client too. I like when I am able to make knots go away and for the client to enjoy the massage, so they come back again.

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Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia

83 months ago

anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey said: To Owner/Clinic Administrator,
I guess you do not offer disability as you know that your employees are likely to become disabled.
All of the people on here who already left Massage Envy and were told deceptive things when job offers were made need to write letters to the Attorney General of their state, and to ttorney General of the Federal Gov't. It is time to get tough massage therapists! Let's not let Massage Envy walk all over this field! We all need to rise up!

I just stated above that we do offer disability that pays 80% of your average pay for the pay period for up to 12 weeks. I don't know how that does not qualify as disability pay. All we require is that you work full time for a therapist for us to offer this benefit to you, and that is 23 hours a week. Like I said, we do not offer paid vacation unless your are a salaried employee.

I find these arguements pointless since no matter what I say, you find what we are doing exploitive. So I will end this here. Good luck.

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Fed Up in Wilmette, Illinois

83 months ago

Defender of Massage Envy in Atlanta, Georgia said: All of these comments are ridiculous! First, to the person who doesn't want to tip...people are rubbing your body and you feel as if you shouldn't tip? Do you not tip waitors, or your hair stylist? Massage therapist work hard, and are constantly on their feet. People who are too cheap to tip are the only ones who feel tips are "unprofessional". Also to the MTs, I have worked at Massage Envy for over a year and I feel that I am paid extremely fairly. What you don't make per hour you make up in the fact that 1. You don't pay for anything needed to perform massage therapy, 2. You never have to market yourself they do that for you, and 3. The hours are very flexible. I get extra money for clients joining as well as extra money if I am requested, I wouldn't get that anywhere else!

Dear Defender,

Massage Envy (or Massage Enemy, as I like to call it) is the biggest shame ever unleashed on massage therapists. The company is getting rich on cheap massages provided by therapists who don't know any better. Wise up! You've getting used by these charlatans!

Massage Envy is indefencible!

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Fed Up in Wilmette, Illinois

83 months ago

Defender of Massage Envy in Atlanta, Georgia said: All of these comments are ridiculous! I get extra money for clients joining as well as extra money if I am requested, I wouldn't get that anywhere else!

Defender,

I believe that you have not looked very hard to find a quality clinic to work at if you really have these views about this faulty enterprise. If you really are a therapist as you claim and not just another ME shill, do your homework! You couldn't have found a worse place to work for yourself!

You can't with any real intellence defend Massage Enemy because it is truly IN-defencible!!!!

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anne vienne in Alexandria, Louisiana

83 months ago

I love eing a thertapist, and have een one for over five years. I have worked on several different pay scales: but I,ve ALWAYS made atleast half of each service that I provide. I knew at massage envy I'd e payed less but, for the amount of ack to back ALL DAY massages that you do, the pay is to low. I still want to help peoplew and less them with my touch ut, I've still got to make a living without urning out before I'm thirty. Massage Envy is a fine entry level job, or maye for a therapist who preforms massage on the side as a hobby. If you arent'fresh out of school, you may feel pretty jipped after a while. It's funny ecuase Massage Envy knows that they aren't paying farely( those who come without a membership for $78/hr. the therapist still gets paid the same low rate! Envy has a policy that you can quit at any time with no prior notice, and no strings attached. They know you're going to burn out, and eventually quit when your fed up! They don't want any messes to clean up with such a high turn out. Anyways, it's been 3 weeks, and I'm already plotting to quit. NOt to brag, ut my massage style is to over qualifyied for their pay scale.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

Anne Vienne,
Thank you for your post. Massage Envy counts on the fact that unsuspecting Massage Therapists will work for them for a little while before they quit. What you might want to consider, and I really mean this, is to do some other job full time while looking for a reputable massage company to work for. Even if it is being a bank teller or working at McDonald's you will IMMEDIATELY make more money than at Massage Envy. Also contact www.opeiu.com about forming a massage union. If you quit Massage Envy, you should leave a going away present -- print a couple of pages from this Massage Envy Forum and put it in everyone's locker anonymously at a time when the most massage therapists are there and no one is in the breakroom to see you do it.

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anne vienne in Alexandria, Louisiana

83 months ago

Actually I came back to give the full post becuase earlier I was hurried. I actually have a petite spa of my own, and drive over to Envy only on Sundays. Actually, gas is so high that this "extra drive ( though very gratifying to meet/help new walks of life)is no longer feesible. I origanally did it becuase there's few jobs in this town, and I needed the back to back action. I now realize that while it's been hard ork, and fun, I need to step back and just put more umph into my own business. I drive 2 hrs. to get there so you know where the tips go! You can really build your clientele because it's VERY easy to be VERY GOOD over there. The problem is that it's so darn back to ack that it's unrealistic to think that a therapist can get a break to recharge let alone simply go to the bathroom. It's wham! BAM! thanks MAM! os SIR! literally. You see, the franchise owners have no clue how it really is for the therapist, and you know why? HOW many of them can you name that are actual massage therapists ? TELL mE? Probaly zilch. I felt a little guilty complaining allowed to the other therapists. It was like the poor things had no idea what I was talkig about. And who am I to rain on there healing journey parades. I f they would just go 50/50 even they'd have enough therapists to actually make they're business worth running. Who wants to hire, fire, and have people qiut on you all day. THat's just more money you have to pay your poor CPA for filing all that paper work.
It's great to offer affordable massage to the masses, I mean as a massage therapist I say thank God for the eastern Medicine meets western medicine revolution. What we are looking at here is exactly like the Wal'mart take over. I say COME ON! at the end of the day would it really hurt the franchise fees to pay your the therapist atleast 50/50? Either way the bills still get paid Then Some right?

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licensed in Atlanta, Georgia

83 months ago

i'm also a therapist at a massage envy in the atlanta area and maybe it's our region or our franchise owners or who knows what but in my experience most of our therapists seem happy with the job. I mean who wouldn't love to be paid more, but i think we're paid fairly. i worked for a cruise line for about 9 months and i can attest that in that setting i was truly treated like a slave. i did anywhere between 10 and 14 massages a day and wasn't paid enough for the strain. at ME atleast i get to say i'll only do 6 in a day and know it won't deviate from that more than a half hour. just my opinion tho so i guess to each his own but i like it.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

Licensed in Atlanta, GA,
What are you going to do when Massage Envy tells everyone that they now pay $10 per massage? That is what I anticipate them easily doing just as they easily got massage therapists to work for them for only $15. Even if they are the easiest place to ge a massage job, mt's are better off working even in another field while waiting for another massage job that pays ethically. This action by enough MT's would force the compensation to be within traditional compensation again which is $30 for doing a $60 massage; not $15.

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anne vienne in Alexandria, Louisiana

83 months ago

Yes there are certain reasons why any therapist may find themselves having to work at ME, and I 'm sure positions will be filled as long as they are open. Like i said FINE entry level job BUT, I don't see how anyone could make a career out of being there...unless of course you own the place! In a way I feel like I'm volunteering when I'm there. volunteer work is always good right? Other than that Way to draining, and stressful for full time status. I need backup income like many new small business owners, but man it feels sweet to do a massage at my place, and Finally make ALL the money for the hardwork that only I DID. Good luck to all at Envy, and HAPPY 2nd income to ya!

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

83 months ago

(Reestablishing web links -- sometimes I forget to click below)

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me in Calhan, Colorado

83 months ago

client said: The amount of money you pay to learn your PROFESSION, i.e. massage therapy, could not possibly be as much as a 4-year university degree or what a professional PHYSICAL THERAPIST pays to learn his or her profession.

Tips are unprofessional.

I paid 20,000 dollars for my degree in massage therapy.

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Sean Slovik in Melbourne, Florida

83 months ago

me in Calhan, Colorado said: I paid 20,000 dollars for my degree in massage therapy.

I think $20 K is a little high for an MT education, but if you also got an academic degree along with it, perhaps it was worth it. I still think you could have gotten enough training to perform competent massage for under $10K, maybe a bit less if you shopped around.

Regardless I believe the $20,000 figure is peanuts compared to the $30-$40K needed for the 4yr pre-entry bachelor's degree plus the $55-65K needed for the M.S. or doctorate required to practice either PT or OT, not to mention the 6-8 years you're not making any money while out of the workforce.

Keep also in mind that while massage CEU classes are expensive, PT and OT CEU classes are typically double for the same number of credits.

I know these things because I've gone both routes (MT and OT). Yes, PT's and OT's make good money, sometimes really good money as employees ($60-$80K/year).

But considering the investment for MT, even at only $24,000 per year of income (based upon the $12 per hour figure commonly mentioned), MT is still the better deal:

Figure yearly return on investment:
$24,000 per yr income/$10,000 school investment=240% return per year. (not to mention, some potential for tips)

Compare that to PT or OT:
$72,000 per yr income (avg.)/$95,000 school investment=76% return per year. (No tips expected or allowed).

Last point:
I've known some MT's, and I've known some PT's and OT's. Taking money out of the equation, I can say judging by all of their remarks over the years, MT's display much more satisfaction about working with massage clients, than OT's and PT's with their patients.

That's an aspect you'll never be able to quantify with money.

www.male-massage-therapist.com/
www.a-body-for-living.com/
www.massage-therapy-research.com/

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licensed in Atlanta, Georgia

83 months ago

anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey said: Licensed in Atlanta, GA,
What are you going to do when Massage Envy tells everyone that they now pay $10 per massage? That is what I anticipate them easily doing just as they easily got massage therapists to work for them for only $15. Even if they are the easiest place to ge a massage job, mt's are better off working even in another field while waiting for another massage job that pays ethically. This action by enough MT's would force the compensation to be within traditional compensation again which is $30 for doing a $60 massage; not $15.

At any job there is the possiblity of wages being cut and I agree that I would be unhappy if that were to happen because i truly enjoy my job and would hate to have to leave it. I think unfortunately we have flooded the marketplace and the balance of supply and demand is off. I don't believe that therapists will be able to make those highers wages again until there are either less therapists or more jobs. its not that i don't believe i am worth more, but i would rather be doing what i want than holding out for pay that isnt around right now. again, just my opinion.

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Jeez! You guys are hilarious! in Saint Petersburg, Florida

82 months ago

Fed Up in Wilmette, Illinois said: Defender,

I believe that you have not looked very hard to find a quality clinic to work at if you really have these views about this faulty enterprise. If you really are a therapist as you claim and not just another ME shill, do your homework! You couldn't have found a worse place to work for yourself!

You can't with any real intellence defend Massage Enemy because it is truly IN-defencible!!!![/QUOTE

Ok then I guess I will never go to ME, wish your company luck in the future!

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

82 months ago

To Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia:
You wrote that you want to bring "massage to the masses," and rhetorical nonsense about how can you expect a business to "pay more than half of what they make on a service" and that we massage therapists are "basically crapping in the hand that feeds you" and you find this forum's comments often "selfish and unwarranted."
Regarding quote 2: traditionally most massage places have been paying half of what is chareged for a massage and since most places that I know of still are, ME could do so if it chose to. Quote 3: Massage Envy is the one doing the crapping and is the hand that is trying to take our harvest away as they are certainly not feeding anyone. Quote 4: I find Massage Envy to be selfish and unwarranted. In addition, I find your comments and position to be selfish and noticed that ME has not opened up in cities like Newark, NJ, that have greater masses than the suburbs -- this would fit the mission that you claim better, but we know that the mission you claim is a false one. Just as Massage Envy overall does not care about massage therapists, we massage therapists should not care about Massage Envy -- have no mercy, comrades, when submitting articles to that magazine or engaging in other forms of permissable activism. If Massage Envy goes out of business, they brought it upon themselves from their extreme greed.

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LMT in Orlando, Florida

82 months ago

Well, as someone pointed out, Massage Envy is a franchise, so with that one encounters variations in how ownership runs its clinics. There are a few in the area here and for the most part, perhaps in large part because the clinic administrator is from the massage education field, our therapists are not "run into the ground." We are asked to give an assessment of our abilites and given breaks so that the clients receive a quality experience, and so the therapist feels balanced. Some days and some clients are more difficult than others, to be sure, but overall it seems to work.

As far as pay, I wish there was a higher guaranteed pay scale instead of relying on a tip from a client to round out my hourly wage, which averages about $26, conservatively. As a person with many years in the industry, where I paid all the overhead, I find that I break about even if I look at my time investment with each client, the length of hands-on time, and the expenses associated with running a private practice, despite itemizing tax deductions.

I did not become a massage therapist to become wealthy; for me, bodywork is a calling, and my needs are being met by working at Massage Envy to supplement my other income as an educator (of massage). I appreciate the freedom to do massage and go home, rather than handle all of the business related responsibilities that I did for so long. I also appreciate that at my particular clinic, the therapists needs are honored. I cannot speak to anyone else's experience, but completely understand the ire resulting from having an unsympathetic employer who expects a therapist to be a machine.

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NO NAME in Salt Lake City, Utah

82 months ago

Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia said: I'm saddened to see so many massage therapists who feel so negatively about what Massage Envy is trying to accomplish. Our whole goal is to bring massage to the masses and to allow all people to benefit from a therapeutic massage session regardless of whether or not they make a ton of money. How could you expect any business to pay you more than half of what they make on a service? Especially when all you are require to provide is your talent. The Massage Envy's all over the nation are dolling out big bucks to provide you with a safe and professional environment to practice your trade in and you are basically crapping in the hand that feeds you. Not only that, but tell me one other company that goes out of it's way to provide continuing education classes for it's therapists, health insurance at no cost to the employee, and a life insurance policy to be paid out to your loved ones if anything were to happen to you? I find these comments selfish and unwarranted. But luckily for me, and the other owners and operators out there who are interested and extremely invested in bringing this concept to everyone, there are still therapists out there who do work at massage envy and value every client that they have the pleasure of touching. It's not always about the money per massage but the money overall and the abundance of people you get to help. I would love to see a site bashing the people who organize the legal aide branches throughout the country and doctors without borders, I doubt I would see any of their employees complaining about not being paid enough money to pay back their minimum of 8 YEARS of education.

YOU WOULD LIKE TO THINK A MASSAGE CLINIC IS A SAFE ENVIRONMENT BUT THE SAD TRUTH IS MOST ARE NOT. JUST 3 WEEKS AGO A MAN (L.M.T.) WAS CHARGED FOR RAPE. AT A MASSAGE ENVY IN SALT LAKE CITY UTAH.

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Anne in Corvallis, Oregon

82 months ago

Just a few comments in response to the ME owner (who appears to have left the conversation but maybe potential employees will be helped by this info):

I made 75% as an independent contractor with very low overhead (practically free business cards & brochures from vistaprint and linen service were my only expenses), and now make 60% plus awesome tips at a locally owned spa. We get health insurance at 32 hours on the clock per week (mandatory 15 minute breaks between appointments and half hour lunch for a six hour day - we have a woman on staff who's breastfeeding, so she takes an hour <which reminds me we also have had 2 women go on maternity leave since I started, and while they weren't paid, they did get to take as much time as they wanted knowing their jobs would be there upon return; also had a staff member take off for a 6 month road trip and came back on when she returned>, plus we can leave or come in late if we don't have any appointments booked); a week paid leave (based on our average pay for the past 12 weeks) starting our first year, and increasing as we advance in experience (our pay also increases as they charge a higher rate to guests for more highly demanded massage techs; plus we make extra for doing deep tissue, prenatal, hot stone treatments, steam towels, scrubs, etc); we have a $200 per year continuing education allowance (also increasing as we advance); we set our own schedules (not just picking from shifts, but deciding to start at 11am instead of the 9am opening time); our managers bring in cakes for birthdays; we have team meetings with lunch provided; we are provided with whatever tools we request (specific lotions, essential oils, heat packs...)

So don't feel like you have to settle for whatever job you can find; everyone deserves work they love and employers that love them!

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John in Salt Lake City, Utah

82 months ago

I would like to employ 4 MTs in a clinc that is designed to be a chiropractic, PT, gym, and mental health/life coaching clinic I would pay 50/50 thinking if they charge 60-60/hour and were an independent contractor.
Would I provide the tables or would MTs as independents?>
I would like to know how to design the rooms/ facilities to accomodate this relationship?
Any interest?

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LMT in Whitman, Massachusetts

82 months ago

John,
Check with your local board of health on the requirements for the facility you are planning. In some communities massage rooms need to have a sink in the room and a window in the door. Also a window opening to the outside. Though this may sound archaic, it is the law in some towns.

I would have the massage therapists as independent contractors. As far as the massage tables go, it would be wise to provide electric tables for your potential therapists. It is also much easier to adjust the table to the correct height for the therapist and the client. besides. it takes time to set up, haul, and take down the table, sheets, and other things the therapist needs to do their work. Most therapists do not want to leave their table in a place that is not secure. Oh, and by the way, you can not have locks on the massage room doors, it is against the law in most places.

Keep the massage area away from the gym component. Gyms are very noisy. One can not relax to gym type uptempo music. If the client cannot relax, the muscles will resist deep work which is needed in most cases.

Good Luck in your endeavor.

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Used & Abused MT in Westminster, Maryland

81 months ago

anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey said: Massage Therapists (no more),
Thanks for your complements and I hope you contacted that union I mentioned. You verbalized so well the situation the field is experiencing when in addition our common Massage Envy problem, but when you mention how it feels that the professional associations all have their hand out. Each time it is for about $200.00. That is sad, but is the beauty of my massage union idea. If we had a union dedicated for massage people, and it was well marketed (just imagine what a post of a great web site on here could do), I predict that hundreds of thousands of massage therapists would join just as they joined ABMP or AMTA. I do not know all of the legalities of starting a union, and I would like to do this to help the field and to make a huge profit or salary depending upon what is legal, but I put the idea out here to help the field even if you or someone else takes the idea and runs with it as I have invested a lot in my own massage company which is fairly new and cannot afford to start a massage union right now.
Members of the union would have the freedom not to follow advice such as strike on a certain day, as they are individuals, but the union would be more effective when massage therapists act as unified group like a voting block. For now, I reuest that all massage therapists currently working at Massage Envy call out sick at their next shift.
By the way, I like helping the client too. I like when I am able to make knots go away and for the client to enjoy the massage, so they come back again.

Speaking of AMTA; I just recently have been enlightened to the fact that Massage Envy among other scoundrals were at the AMTA conference in Middleboro last week!!!! AMTA welcomes these greedy, disrespectful, unconcious people to set up; employ; and advertise at their yearly conference???????? I personally...among other MT's are canceling our insurance through AMTA pronto!!!!!!!!

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

81 months ago

To Used & Abused MT,
You can get insurance through ABMP instead. It is adequate, in my opinion (AMTA offers the biggest coverage, but ABMP has a lot too).
While the professional agencies do some good, it mainly seems to be about the money. They should not forget the hand that feeds them, i.e. the massgae therapist. We resent companies like Massage Envy which denigrate the massage therapy field. AMTA should not back Massage Envy -- they should take the ethical role and tell them they have a conflict of interest. If asked what, they could tell them that they do not feel (I do not speak for AMTA) that Massage Envy pays ethically.

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D in Oceanside, California

81 months ago

anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey said: Anne Vienne,
Thank you for your post. Massage Envy counts on the fact that unsuspecting Massage Therapists will work for them for a little while before they quit. What you might want to consider, and I really mean this, is to do some other job full time while looking for a reputable massage company to work for. Even if it is being a bank teller or working at McDonald's you will IMMEDIATELY make more money than at Massage Envy. Also contact www.opeiu.com about forming a massage union. If you quit Massage Envy, you should leave a going away present -- print a couple of pages from this Massage Envy Forum and put it in everyone's locker anonymously at a time when the most massage therapists are there and no one is in the breakroom to see you do it.

Sounds like they have a break room and you expect someone to be in there.
The more body types you massage the better. Experience is worth the price and McDonalds is great if you want to go into managment. If you love massage then
do massage.

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

81 months ago

D:
You do not see the big picture.

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Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia

81 months ago

anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey said: To Used & Abused MT,
You can get insurance through ABMP instead. It is adequate, in my opinion (AMTA offers the biggest coverage, but ABMP has a lot too).
While the professional agencies do some good, it mainly seems to be about the money. They should not forget the hand that feeds them, i.e. the massgae therapist. We resent companies like Massage Envy which denigrate the massage therapy field. AMTA should not back Massage Envy -- they should take the ethical role and tell them they have a conflict of interest. If asked what, they could tell them that they do not feel (I do not speak for AMTA) that Massage Envy pays ethically.

Haha, ABMP has a program with Massage Envy where it gives our therapists a discount on their insurance. Good luck finding a company who provides liability insurance who does not back Massage Envy. They, being smart business people, understand that we are the largest employer of massage therapists in the country. It would be foolish of them not to try to secure a spot in our wake.

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Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta, Georgia

81 months ago

NO NAME in Salt Lake City, Utah said: YOU WOULD LIKE TO THINK A MASSAGE CLINIC IS A SAFE ENVIRONMENT BUT THE SAD TRUTH IS MOST ARE NOT. JUST 3 WEEKS AGO A MAN (L.M.T.) WAS CHARGED FOR RAPE. AT A MASSAGE ENVY IN SALT LAKE CITY UTAH.

I meant safe for the therapist. We run background checks, require a licence (where that governing body also provides a background check)and train all of our therapists on proper draping and ethical protocols...if an individual still chooses to do something illegal, short of going back in time, there is very little more we as owners can do to stop it. I suppose we could sit in on every massage and watch to make sure everything is being done properly, but I have a feeling our clients wouldn't like it and our therapists would resent it.

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D in Oceanside, California

81 months ago

Thanks...

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anonymous anonmous in Freehold, New Jersey

81 months ago

To Owner/Clinic Administrator in Atlanta Georgia:
Not sure about that statement -- Massage Envy had hired me before I was certified even though they advertize "certified/licensed therapists."

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