How Much Do Massage Therapists Make? Salary Information By State and Career Info

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated March 9, 2021

Published February 25, 2020

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Massage therapists help their clients relax and treat and manage pain and discomfort using an alternative healthcare method of massage. If you are considering a career as a massage therapist, having detailed salary information can help you decide if it's the right career path for you. In this article, we provide detailed massage therapist salary insights including the states with the highest average salaries for massage therapists.

How much do massage therapists make?

The national average salary for a massage therapist in the United States is recorded here $27.93 per hour working about 30-35 hours per week, although salary averages are frequently updated on Indeed. When looking at the national average salary for a position, it is important to consider other compensation factors such as overtime pay, bonuses, benefits packages and cost of living to help you decide whether a career is right for you.

Related: Learn About Being a Massage Therapist

Massage therapist job outlook

The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics projects massage therapists will enjoy a job growth outlook of 22% between the years 2018 and 2028. This job growth outlook is much faster than the national average for all occupations (at 5%). This means massage therapists should enjoy high levels of career stability and have several career opportunities available to them.

Related: Massage Therapist Resume Samples

Massage therapist salaries by state

When comparing the average salary of each state, it is important to consider the average salary and the comparison of the cost of living for each state to make sure you are getting an accurate picture of costs vs income. Here is a list of massage therapist salaries by state as recorded at the time of this article:

  • Alabama: $43,787 per year

  • Alaska: $91,644.80 per year

  • Arizona: $46,488 per year

  • Arkansas: $41,985 per year

  • California: $44,887 per year

  • Colorado: $60,174.40 per year

  • Connecticut: $48,420 per year

  • Delaware: $45,318 per year

  • Florida: $47,964.80 per year

  • Georgia: $62,420.80 per year

  • Hawaii: $48,949 per year

  • Idaho: $55,036.80 per year

  • Illinois: $49,063 per year

  • Indiana: $44,648 per year

  • Iowa: $48,048 per year

  • Kansas: $45,128 per year

  • Kentucky: $50,024 per year

  • Louisiana: $44,229 per year

  • Maine: $43,676 per year

  • Maryland: $50,038 per year

  • Massachusetts: $47,767 per year

  • Michigan: $58,177.60 per year

  • Minnesota: $52,852.80 per year

  • Mississippi: $41,275 per year

  • Missouri: $56,700.80 per year

  • Montana: $45,200 per year

  • Nebraska: $46,100 per year

  • Nevada: $56,555.20 per year

  • New Hampshire: $45,791 per year

  • New Jersey: $48,738 per year

  • New Mexico: $44,655 per year

  • New York: $83,553.60 per year

  • North Carolina: $47,012 per year

  • North Dakota: $61,995 per year

  • Ohio: $59,009.60 per year

  • Oklahoma: $58,697.60 per year

  • Oregon: $66,539.20 per year

  • Pennsylvania: $61,089.60 per year

  • Rhode Island: $50,239 per year

  • South Carolina: $43,969 per year

  • South Dakota: $45,862 per year

  • Tennessee: $44,123 per year

  • Texas: $55,515.20 per year

  • Utah: $58,198.40 per year

  • Vermont: $48,029 per year

  • Virginia: $48,445 per year

  • Washington: $67,641.60 per year

  • West Virginia: $44,700 per year

  • Wisconsin: $45,555 per year

  • Wyoming: $66,102.40 per year

How to increase a massage therapist salary

Follow these steps to increase your salary as a massage therapist:

  1. Choose the right geographic location.

  2. Build a loyal client base.

  3. Continue your education and training to diversify your skills.

  4. Improve your marketing and business skills.

1. Choose the right geographic location

Salaries of massage therapists vary by location based on the demand for massage therapists in the area and the area's cost of living. It is important for you to choose a geographic location that balances your earning potential and your cost of living.

2. Build a loyal client base

Next, massage therapists need to build a large, loyal client base. Even massage therapists who are working in salons and spas should seek to build their personal client base. Doing this creates a foundation for which you can advance your career by potentially opening your own massage therapy practice.

Related: 17 of the Best Self-Employed Jobs

3. Continue your education and training to diversify your skills

Taking continuing education courses and receiving additional training to diversify your skills will help increase your career value. Specializing in specific areas and techniques of massage therapy can help you increase your salary by expanding the type of services you can offer. Additionally, you can also seek additional professional training in services that are related to massage therapy to expand your service offerings and increase your salary as a massage therapist.

4. Improve your marketing and business skills

Finally, massage therapists can increase their salaries by improving their marketing and business skills and knowledge. Expanding your personal knowledge and skill level in marketing and business can help you find more clients to add to your client base.

Related careers

The following are several careers related to the career of a massage therapist:

  • Physical Therapist

  • Occupational Therapist

  • Respiratory Therapist

  • Athletic Trainer

  • Occupational Therapy Assistant

Frequently asked questions about massage therapist salaries

Here are a few frequently asked questions about the salary of a massage therapist:

  • How are massage therapists paid?

  • Do massage therapists receive tips?

  • How long does it take to become a massage therapist?

How are massage therapists paid?

Massage therapists can be paid in several different ways. Many massage therapists who work in small massage therapy offices, spas and health clubs are paid per massage, while other massage therapists are paid per hour or paid a fixed annual salary. The method in which a massage therapist is paid often depends on where the massage therapist works, how many hours they work and whether or not they are self-employed.

Do massage therapists receive tips?

Many massage therapists receive tips in addition to their base salary or compensation. Whether or not you receive tips as a massage therapist will vary greatly depending on where you work and whether or not they have a no-tipping policy. In general, massage therapists who do earn tips receive tips that are between 15 and 20% of the cost of the massage.

How long does it take to become a massage therapist?

To become a massage therapist, you will first need to complete a massage therapy education program. On average, these programs take between one and two years to complete. The amount of time it takes to complete a massage therapy education program varies based on how long the program you enroll in is and whether you attend the program full-time or part-time. Most massage therapy education programs involve a combination of in-class learning and practicum experience. Once you complete your massage therapy education program, you will need to pass the licensing exam to become a licensed massage therapist.

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