The salary of a massage therapist is extremely versatile mainly due to the fact that over 70% are self employed. Any profession with an entrepreneurial basis is bound to have large salary dispersion due to the reliance upon personal drive and education. With that being said, there are some statistics collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics that can help untangle the web of massage therapy salaries.
Massage Salary and Wages
According to the most recent update of May 2013, the mean hourly wage for a massage therapist is $19.42 with a median of $17.27. This correlates to a mean annual wage of $40,400 and a median wage of $35,920. This dispersion between the mean and the median can tell us a lot about the salaries massage therapists are receiving.
A median is simply the 50th percentile meaning that 50 percent of massage therapists earn above this number and 50% earn below this number. On the other hand, the mean is just the average of all salaries in the sample. Since the mean is higher than the median, we know that there are some very strong and large numbers on the “above the 50%” side. In other words, while the median may be $35,920, there is a strong number of massage therapists that are making well above this; so many that the mean is actually larger than the median.
How much to charge for a massage?
While the wages given to us by the BLS give us insight into how much a massage therapist is paid, how does this help the massage therapists that are out on their own and charging for their own massages? The American Massage Therapy Association shows from their surveys that massage therapists charge on average $59 for a one hour massage. The AMTA also estimates that 73% of massage therapists are self employed making the amount charged for a one hour massage very relevant.
Reliance on repeat clients
Due to the high cost of acquiring new clients, massage therapists largely rely on word of mouth marketing and repeat clients. This is such an integral part of not only keeping a practice alive, but also making it successful that I created the 5 secrets to client retention. Every day for 5 days you will receive for free 5 of the secrets to client retention.
The Million Dollar Massage Practice
Since we are on the topic of salaries and wages, I wanted to discuss a previous article I had written on the million dollar massage practice. There is a large misconception that massage therapists can never make a lot of money because they are limited by the number of massages they can give. This couldn’t be further from the truth. The article is quite comprehensive and sets the framework for how a massage therapist could build up to owning a million dollar massage practice.
Massage Salary Resources
These are the specific sites that I referenced throughout the article.
To learn how to deal with the finances of your own massage practice, check out my online Business Finance CE course created specifically for massage entrepreneurs.
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