4 Excellent Reasons to Attend a California Massage School
Becoming a massage therapist is a truly worthwhile goal to pursue. The field offers the potential to make a good living by doing something enjoyable, active, and gratifying. Plus, people who perform massage services offer positive ways for members of their community to get relief from physical or mental tension. And the therapies they offer are often good complements to other kinds of health and medical treatments.
So, why start looking into California massage schools and building your professional future in this state? Here are four of the top reasons:
1. California Massage Certification Is Voluntary
As someone thinking about entering this vocation, you might wonder how to become a licensed massage therapist in California. It's definitely an important aspect to consider. But here's the simple bottom line: State-level certification is purely voluntary. Earning it, however, can have a lot of benefits. And if you don't earn it, you still might need some form of local permit or authorization to practice massage in the town or city you work in.
What are the benefits of getting state certification? One of the main advantages is the extra respect it can provide among potential clients, employers, and others in the massage industry. Also, it gives you the freedom to practice massage therapy anywhere in California without having to get any other permits for it from local municipalities. (The exception is that you would still need a business license to operate your own massage therapy clinic.)
Becoming a Certified Massage Therapist (CMT) in this state primarily requires:*
- Successfully completing a minimum of 500 hours of education from a school approved by the California Massage Therapy Council
- Passing one of two exams—either (1) the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Exam (MBLEx) from the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards or (2) the Board Certification Exam for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (BCTMB) from the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork
2. Good Training Is Easy to Find Throughout the State
In this part of the country, you don't have to go far to attend a massage therapy school. California has an abundance of institutions that can train you to become a professional in the field. In fact, Southern California, Central California, and Northern California are all home to multiple schools. For example, you'll find a lot of options in regions like:
- San Diego County
- Riverside County, including the Coachella Valley
- Los Angeles County
- San Bernardino County
- The San Fernando Valley
- The San Joaquin Valley, including Kern, Tulare, and Merced counties
- Fresno County
- The Bay Area, including Santa Clara, Alameda, and Contra Costa counties
- The Sacramento Valley
- Solano County
Plus, many of the programs you can find incorporate training in a variety of massage techniques, including common modalities like deep-tissue massage, Swedish massage, and sports massage. And the best massage therapy schools in California often provide the option of choosing additional specialties to explore.
3. The Job Outlook Is Very Bright
Massage is growing in popularity as more and more people seek ways to enhance their well-being. Older people, especially, are turning to massage therapy in rising numbers for the health benefits it can provide. And since this state has one of America's largest populations and most robust economies, it's full of potential clients. In fact, in 2014, the state had the highest level of massage therapy employment in America.**
And California's massage therapists are projected to enjoy an increase in employment of 18 percent between 2012 and 2022. That translates to about 500 job openings each year over that period.***
4. You Can Generate a Good Income
In 2015, the average pay for a massage therapist in California was $20.83 per hour. For full-time work, that's equal to a yearly salary of $43,330, which is higher than the national average for this occupation. And some massage therapists eventually earn more than $73,800 a year.**
Start Fulfilling Your Aspirations
Explore an impressive variety of massage therapy schools in California right now. All it takes is your zip code to begin an easy search for programs being offered near you!
* California Massage Therapy Council, website last visited on June 10, 2015.
** Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, website last visited on April 14, 2016.
*** State of California, Employment Development Department, website last visited on June 10, 2015.