Healthcare & Medical

Massage Therapist

Massage therapists manipulate muscles and soft-tissue by touch, to relieve pain, help heal injuries, reduce stress and increase relaxation.

  • Entry-level education

    VET qualification

  • Job outlook

    1 2 3 4 5

What does a Massage Therapist do?

Massage therapists manipulate muscles and soft-tissue by touch, to relieve pain, help heal injuries, reduce stress and increase relaxation.

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Work activities

As a massage therapist, you would:

  • ask clients about injuries, issues and medical history
  • evaluate clients by locating painful or tense areas of the body
  • manipulate muscles and other soft tissues using touch and pressure
  • use massage oil to reduce friction during treatments
  • create an ongoing treatment plan
  • document clients' conditions and progress
  • provide clients with guidance on stretching, strengthening, overall relaxation, and how to improve their posture
  • advise clients on how to maintain their wellbeing.

Different types of massage use different techniques. You may specialise in one technique, such as sports massage or reflexology.

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Key skills and interests

To become a massage therapist, you would need:

  • confidence and comfort in working closely with clients
  • an in-depth knowledge of massage techniques
  • good physical strength and stamina
  • empathy and understanding
  • a smart appearance
  • good personal hygiene.
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Working hours and conditions

Working Hours

If you are employed by a massage salon you would work a standard number of hours per week, which may include evenings and weekends. As a self-employed massage therapist, you could choose your own working hours to suit the needs of your clients.

Conditions

You may work in a salon, a healthcare facility, from home or travel to clients' houses or workplaces.

A current drivers' licence is likely to be necessary. If you provide mobile massage, you would also require your own massage table.

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How to become an Massage Therapist?

Entry Level Education

A VET qualification in massage therapy practice or remedial massage is usually required to become a massage therapist. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your senior secondary school certificate or equivalent.

You may also become a massage therapist through a traineeship in Massage Therapy Practice or Remedial Massage. Generally employers require a senior secondary school certificate or equivalent

Massage therapists wanting to offer health fund rebates to private health fund members must complete a Diploma of Remedial Massage and be a member of an industry association.

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Job outlook

  • 1 2 3 4 5

Employment of massage therapists is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations.

The complementary medicine sector has grown strongly over the last five years, and is predicted to continue to grow. The increasing acceptance of complementary therapies to help relieve pain and stress will lead to new openings for massage therapists.

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