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  1. #1
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    Mar. 6, 2002
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    Oregon
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    Default Anyone here an LMT?

    I'd love to hear from professionals currently in the business. I'm looking at education options for myself to break into a different industry for the long term, and massage therapy has always been something I've had an interest in. If you've also branched out into the equine side of things, I'd be even more interested in hearing from you.

    Is it a viable profession in the current economy? More beneficial to work out of a spa/clinic or independently?
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what
    lies with in us. - Emerson



  2. #2
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    Jun. 24, 2006
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    My mother is a CMT (no licensing requirement in NJ) and has been for 14 years or so? She has her own spa and even had her own trade show for quite some time.

    The issue is... you can't work 40 hours a week doing that. Between not filling your book and the stress it puts on your body its almost physically impossible. So great PT money but don't look at as a 40 hour option. In addition most spas do anywhere from a 70/30 to a 50/50 split so factor it in. Still great money, great industry.

    If I were to enter that industry I would rather work out of a spa or medical office for safety and just trying to keep it that quiet at home. For instance if you have dogs, etc. I would have no issues doing house calla for established clients or referrals.

    I feel pretty knowledgeable since I was the business manager but PM me and I will put you in contact with my mom, she'd be happy to talk to you and is very accomplished in her field.



  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by magicteetango View Post
    My mother is a CMT (no licensing requirement in NJ) and has been for 14 years or so? She has her own spa and even had her own trade show for quite some time.

    The issue is... you can't work 40 hours a week doing that. Between not filling your book and the stress it puts on your body its almost physically impossible. So great PT money but don't look at as a 40 hour option. In addition most spas do anywhere from a 70/30 to a 50/50 split so factor it in. Still great money, great industry.

    If I were to enter that industry I would rather work out of a spa or medical office for safety and just trying to keep it that quiet at home. For instance if you have dogs, etc. I would have no issues doing house calla for established clients or referrals.

    I feel pretty knowledgeable since I was the business manager but PM me and I will put you in contact with my mom, she'd be happy to talk to you and is very accomplished in her field.
    Hmm... I don't exactly see how it would be great PT money when the education is $10k in tuition alone! I appreciate the info, and it does make me wonder how location might affect the industry.
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what
    lies with in us. - Emerson



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb. 22, 2012
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    255

    Default

    I frequent a chain of massage spas called "massage envy". They also offer facials
    Which would be another skill that wouldn't be exhausting. Here in fl you can also add certificates in microdermabrasion or laser hair removal once you get your state
    Facials licensure.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
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    Jun. 24, 2006
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    Default

    Kind of forgot to figure that in lol. I just see so many schools blabbing about $$ and every therapist I have spoken to has agreed with me that it isn't realistic. If you really have a passion for it totally worth it but I really think even with the fullest book that 40 hours would be physically impossible, or at the least you sure won't want to ride afterwards! It is exhausting! Don't mean to rain on your parade I just find it really unrealistic what they say you can make.

    As far as the horse stuff I only know two people, both work FT elsewhere and one said it was very hard to find consistent clients.

    ETA: Arabracer has a great idea!



  6. #6
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    Mar. 6, 2002
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    Quote Originally Posted by magicteetango View Post
    Kind of forgot to figure that in lol. I just see so many schools blabbing about $$ and every therapist I have spoken to has agreed with me that it isn't realistic. If you really have a passion for it totally worth it but I really think even with the fullest book that 40 hours would be physically impossible, or at the least you sure won't want to ride afterwards! It is exhausting! Don't mean to rain on your parade I just find it really unrealistic what they say you can make.

    As far as the horse stuff I only know two people, both work FT elsewhere and one said it was very hard to find consistent clients.

    ETA: Arabracer has a great idea!
    I'd be curious to know your location. I can think of at least half a dozen people that are certified equine massage therapists within an hour of me - and I know there are quite a few more that I've seen advertised or heard recommended. I know at least one that does horses-only full time! I imagine location/average income for the area is a HUGE factor in whether or not that type of industry is FT or PT - I live in the Willamette Valley, where the focus is primarily sporthorses and performance horses.

    I haven't actually been in contact with any of the schools yet, so wasn't aware of what they say you make - but thanks for the heads up. We have quite a few Massage Envy stores around here, that is particularly what I was thinking of in terms of working out of an established business versus starting your own (and leasing a space).
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what
    lies with in us. - Emerson



  7. #7
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    Jun. 24, 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heinz 57 View Post
    I'd be curious to know your location. I can think of at least half a dozen people that are certified equine massage therapists within an hour of me - and I know there are quite a few more that I've seen advertised or heard recommended. I know at least one that does horses-only full time! I imagine location/average income for the area is a HUGE factor in whether or not that type of industry is FT or PT - I live in the Willamette Valley, where the focus is primarily sporthorses and performance horses.

    I haven't actually been in contact with any of the schools yet, so wasn't aware of what they say you make - but thanks for the heads up. We have quite a few Massage Envy stores around here, that is particularly what I was thinking of in terms of working out of an established business versus starting your own (and leasing a space).

    I am outside Harrisburg, PA now. The one who said she couldn't keep clients was in Orlando, FL. My mother's spa is in Ocean City, NJ.



  8. #8
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    Mar. 6, 2002
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    Quote Originally Posted by magicteetango View Post
    I am outside Harrisburg, PA now. The one who said she couldn't keep clients was in Orlando, FL. My mother's spa is in Ocean City, NJ.
    Hmm, well, maybe it's a west coast thing? I don't know what the difference is, but I'm also not familiar with the market in the areas you mentioned.
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what
    lies with in us. - Emerson



  9. #9
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    Feb. 22, 2012
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    Default

    Laser hair removal is very busy in south Florida year -round. I'm considering the facial specialist just so I can pursue the laser certificate. My friend does this and makes good money plus tips.



  10. #10
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    Nov. 13, 2005
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    Kentucky
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    Default

    I am an LMT. The pay is good depending on what you are used to making-- I do not make very much at my day job so the pay is pretty darn good in my world. I did a couples massage tonight after my regular job and made more than half of what I make in 8 hours at the desk job in just one hour. However, I did not get into it for the money. I like helping people and I wanted to do something interesting. Massage fits both of those things for me. School was super fun, but I recommend going to a GOOD school otherwise the national certification will be quite challenging. The faster but less thorough schools in my area have a very low pass rate and it is becoming a requirement to pass the national boards in more and more states. I am a fairly new LMT so I may feel differently in a year, but so far, I really like it!



  11. #11
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    Jul. 14, 2011
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    Warren County, NJ
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    I've been a CMT in NJ since 2004 and have been working steadily since 2006. Honestly, it's good money on a per hour basis, but to make really good money, be prepared to cripple yourself. The most one hour massages I can do in one day is 5 or 6, although I've heard of people doing more than that. They are probably at the beginning of their career. These days, 4 or 5 in one day is more than enough. The repetitive strain injury risk is very high. I have shoulder pain that effects me every second of my day. I work in a nice day spa; business has slowed down quite a bit the past few years, and so my income has steadily decreased. I'd love to get bodywork for myself, but I can't afford it nor find someone I want to trade with.

    My school was great and I loved every minute of it. However, I doubt that half of my class are still doing massage. It's a great supplemental income combined with something much less physically demanding. Pay your dues working in a place with a lot of different clients before going out on your own----the years of experience will prepare you for anything.

    I enjoy my job but dread doing it now. I'm living paycheck to paycheck, in pain every day and looking for a steady office job, which I had before I moved to another part of the state.

    If you want to help people and make a lot of money, go to cosmetology school. One stylist at my salon made $75K last year. You'll work a lot, but it's a lot easier to make a lot more money.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by magicteetango View Post
    I am outside Harrisburg, PA now. The one who said she couldn't keep clients was in Orlando, FL. My mother's spa is in Ocean City, NJ.
    I'm in Harrisburg and was an LMT. I loved the work, but couldn't make a living at it. People would think nothing of not showing up or cancelling. It's pretty hard to pay the mortgage when you count on your book but the money ends up not coming in.

    I had a few great customers who relied on the massage for medical purposes, but it just wasn't enough - and I was REALLY good and had great references. I also worked in a couple different modalities.

    With the economy in the state it's in, people are giving up non-essentials, and for the most part, massage falls into that category.

    If you are married and looking for fun money, sure, go for it. But I'd never suggest it as a carreer that you will base your sole income on, especially in this area. It's not exactly the alternative healing mecca of the world.
    http://www.tbhsa.com/index.html

    Originally Posted by JSwan
    I love feral children. They taste like chicken.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul. 24, 2001
    Location
    MA, USA
    Posts
    110

    Default

    I worked as an LMT for several years and agree that it is very difficult to make a living. I worked out of a chiropractic office for people part time and did equine massage part time. It was a great experience, but after about five years I still did not make enough to have benefits and I began having problems with carpal tunnel and neck pain.

    I am an ER nurse now, which has been quite the change of pace, but I love it!

    There are so many less than stellar schools churning out students now - it is really doing a disservice to the industry.



  14. #14
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    Mar. 6, 2002
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    Oregon
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MyGiantPony View Post
    If you are married and looking for fun money, sure, go for it. But I'd never suggest it as a carreer that you will base your sole income on, especially in this area. It's not exactly the alternative healing mecca of the world.
    Yes, I'm married. We do NEED me to have a job at this point, but in the future (the next few years, hopefully) we do intend to have a baby and the ability to set my hours to some degree is attractive. I won't always need to be FT at an 8-5 job. Though my current employer provides what we use as our primary healthcare, Mr. Heinz is military and we do have Tricare as well.

    There is a great school right here in my town, which is another reason I was considering it, it's not one of those national chains with an infomercial that runs in between episodes of Jerry Springer. Oregon School of Massage.
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what
    lies with in us. - Emerson



  15. #15

    Default

    Oregon School of Massage is one of the best, so you would get an excellent education. In your circumstances, it may be a good choice, but weigh the cost of tuition against the earning potential, especially once you have a baby. You'll have to look into child care vs. income at that point.
    http://www.tbhsa.com/index.html

    Originally Posted by JSwan
    I love feral children. They taste like chicken.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep. 25, 2009
    Location
    Colorado
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    94

    Default

    Timely post! I start massage therapy school next month and am currently in school for Intergrated Manual Therapy. In my case, both the curricula are extremely complementary, with minimal overlap, so I'm using the massage school to make contacts and look into other areas of alternative medicine. The school I'll be attending has a 100% pass rate for the state licensing exam and goes through traditional massage techniques as well as things like trigger point therapy, structural release, myofascial release, reflexology, acupressure, muscle energy, aromatherapy, etc.

    What I'm finding interesting is that NONE of the IMT people have physical complaints from working on other people (for decades, in some cases) and at the massage school I'm attending, none of the instructors and none of the alumni talk about having physical problems from massage. I'm fairly blunt, so I've asked people if they have any issues they think might come from practicing IMT/massage for so long and they've all said "no", then chalk it up to the difference in traditional massage/bodywork styles versus the ones I'm pursuing. The massage therapists I've talked to (from the school) work about 25-30 hours/week, while all the IMT therapists I know work 40 hours/week. I'm in Colorado and in my area you can work for a spa/salon for anywhere from $20-$40/hour plus tips and benefits, or work on your own. I've been keeping an eye on the job listings for several months now and I'm consistently seeing an average of 5 job postings/week for massage therapists, so at least in my area, it seems like it's a fairly strong career.



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