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Career and Education Opportunities for Massage Therapists in Huntington, West Virginia

Huntington, West Virginia provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for massage therapists. There are currently 500 working massage therapists in West Virginia; this should grow 12% to about 560 working massage therapists in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for massage therapists, which sees this job pool growing by about 18.9% over the next eight years. In general, massage therapists massage customers for hygienic or remedial purposes.

Massage therapists earn approximately $14 per hour or $29,430 annually on average in West Virginia. Nationally they average about $16 per hour or $34,900 per year. Compared with people working in the overall category of Physical Therapy, people working as massage therapists in West Virginia earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Physical Therapy nationally. Jobs in this field include: licensed massage therapist, massage operator, and masseur.

There are seventeen schools of higher education in the Huntington area, including two within twenty-five miles of Huntington where you can get a degree to start your career as a massage therapist. Massage therapists usually hold a post-secondary certificate, so you can expect to spend a short time training to become a massage therapist if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Massage Therapist

Massage Therapist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, massage therapists massage customers for hygienic or remedial purposes.

Massage therapists apply finger and hand pressure to specific points of the body. They also massage and knead muscles and soft tissues of the body to furnish treatment for medical conditions or wellness maintenance. Equally important, massage therapists have to talk with clients about their medical histories and problems with stress or pain to establish how massage will be most helpful. They are often called upon to assess clients' soft tissue condition, joint quality and function and range of motion. They are expected to design and propose client treatment plans that specify which types of massage are to be used. Finally, massage therapists treat clients in professional settings or travel to clients' offices and homes.

Every day, massage therapists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for massage therapists to ready and blend oils and apply the blends to clients' skin. Somewhat less frequently, massage therapists are also expected to apply finger and hand pressure to specific points of the body.

Massage therapists sometimes are asked to refer clients to other types of therapists when needed. They also have to be able to take care of treatment records And finally, they sometimes have to talk with clients about their medical histories and problems with stress or pain to establish how massage will be most helpful.

Like many other jobs, massage therapists must be reliable and have a strong concern for others.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Huntington include:

  • Physical Therapy Aide. Under close supervision of a physical therapist or physical therapy assistant, perform only delegated, selected, or routine tasks in specific situations. These duties include preparing the patient and the treatment area.
  • Physical Therapy Assistant. Assist physical therapists in providing physical therapy treatments and procedures. May, in accordance with State laws, assist in the development of treatment plans, carry out routine functions, document the progress of treatment, and modify specific treatments in accordance with patient status and within the scope of treatment plans established by a physical therapist. Generally requires formal training.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Massage Therapist Training

Marshall Community and Technical College - Huntington, WV

Marshall Community and Technical College, 1 John Marshall Way, Huntington, WV 25755. Marshall Community and Technical College is a small college located in Huntington, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,533 students. Marshall Community and Technical College has an associate's degree program in Massage Therapy/Therapeutic Massage which graduated six students in 2008.

O C Collins Career Center - Chesapeake, OH

O C Collins Career Center, 11627 State Rte 243, Chesapeake, OH 45619-0000. O C Collins Career Center is a small school located in Chesapeake, Ohio. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 550 students. O C Collins Career Center has a one to two year program in Massage Therapy/Therapeutic Massage.

CERTIFICATIONS

Nationally Certified in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork: Practitioners know that NCBTMB certification is much more than a credential.

For more information, see the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Huntington, West Virginia

Huntington, West Virginia
Huntington, West Virginia photo by DelanoPatterson

Huntington is situated in Cabell County, West Virginia. It has a population of over 49,185, which has shrunk by 4.4% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Huntington, 84, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Huntington cost $195,100 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, sixteen new homes were built in Huntington, down from thirty-five the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Huntington are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is health care, educational services, and construction. The average travel time to work is about 18 minutes. More than 22.4% of Huntington residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.8%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Huntington is 7.7%, which is the same as West Virginia's average of 7.7%. About 24.7% of Huntington's residents are below the poverty line, which is worse than the state average.

The percentage of Huntington residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 42.7%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Glorious Church of God in Christ, South Side United Methodist Church and Good Samaritan United Methodist Church are some of the churches located in Huntington. The largest religious groups are the American Baptist Churches in the USA, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Huntington is home to the Northcott Hall and the Foster Memorial Home as well as Holderby Commons and United States Post Office and Courthouse Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Westland Plaza Shopping Center, Fairfield Plaza Shopping Center and Huntington Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Huntington can choose from Super 8, Cabell Huntington Hospital and Garden Park for temporary stays in the area.