A massage therapist needs to be skilled with different massage techniques, but also be a person that invokes trust and helps clients feel comfortable and taken care of. It is a job that requires strong hands and a determined mindset, and not to forget – a great resume.
Have a look at these tips and suggestions, followed by a complete resume sample, and get ready to write your own captivating resume for your next job application!
Resume objective for massage therapists
In most U.S states, you need a license to work as a massage therapist, but you also need to be a pleasant person for your coworkers to work with. The resume objective is your chance to show your future employer who you are, beyond just your credentials, and to highlight your top skills.
According to US News, a 22.2% employment growth is predicted before 2028 for massage therapists, which means that somewhere around 35,400 new positions are likely to open up. This means that there is no better time than now to polish up your resume, starting with the resume objective.
A massage therapist needs good knowledge of human anatomy to relieve joint pain and manipulate soft tissue safely, so take a moment and think about how you can transmit your knowledge, skills and personality in your massage therapist resume objective.
The dozens of resumes we sampled led us to the conclusion that massage therapists should consider including a resume objective in their resume.
Most applicants may have similar work experience, certifications, and credentials, but there is only one of you, and this is where you prove yourself.
Licensed massage therapist with broad knowledge of different massage techniques, including holistic massage therapy and sports massage. Specialized in neuromuscular therapy, team player, and with a passion for excellent customer service.
Resume skills for massage therapists
While sampling resumes and analyzing job post content, we saw a mix of soft and hard skills listed on massage therapist resumes. Considering how important personality is when working as a massage therapist, it is a great idea to list soft skills (more related to personality) to showcase your persona.
Hard skills worth listing are massage techniques you master, any certifications you have or relevant experience.
The Acupuncture and Massage College highlights another important skill for massage therapists, and that is the passion and ability to motivate the business and yourself as a professional.
We used this as a starting point in our investigations, and found that a massage therapist resume often tends to include experience related to marketing and leadership as well.
Use the skill section to show yourself off as a natural leader, a team player that will make a good coworker, someone who understands marketing, and who always has the client’s best at heart.
Professional | Passionate | Kind | Team player | Excellent listener | Therapeutic massage | Thai massage | Prenatal massage | Deep tissue therapy | Swedish massage | Administrative experience | Marketing background | Customer-oriented
Massage therapist work experience
The trick when writing the work experience part of a massage therapist resume is to know how to turn past work duties into achievements. What did you do during your employment that could be listed as an achievement?
Avoid writing plain statements like “I helped an old lady with her back pain,” and instead, use strong action verbs to make it sound more impressive. A better alternative would be: “Successfully implemented carefully selected massage techniques to relieve chronic back pain.”
See the difference? You can say the same thing in many different ways, and if you think of your resume as advertisement, you can impress the hiring manager with your actual achievements without the need to exaggerate.
It is common for massage therapists to get a little stuck when writing down their work experience, but think about what you’ve done in the past that could be considered an achievement when worded right.
Sample Work Experience
BlueStar Resort & Golf, Ocala, FL
Massage Therapist 2017 – 2020
Maintained important customer relationships, provided therapeutic massage treatments, worked closely with the fitness manager aid in sports injury prevention and handled paperwork.
- Introduced a new system for handling client information and bills, which reduced the time required to close up at night.
- Conducted marketing strategies online by implementing a company blog to reach a new client group.
- Obtained additional certification in order to offer the clients a wider range of massage techniques and treatments.
- Trained the other massagists in Lymphatic Drainage, which meant the clinic could take on more clients.
Alyeska Resort, Girdwood, AK
Massage Therapist, 2013 – 2016
Worked with Shiatsu, Hot Stone, Swedish and Deep Tissue techniques, provided Hydrotherapy services and was responsible for assessing clients and suggesting treatments.
- Held a public demonstration to show the benefits of therapeutic massage, where the outcome was a 46.7% business increase.
- Introduced Swedish massage to the services offered, which became an instant client favorite.
- Became the most frequently requested massage therapist within the first 3 months of employment.
- Trained two new massage therapists to save the company both time and money.
Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, Farmington PA
Massage Therapist Apprentice, 2011 – 2012
Trained with experienced therapists at a Forbes top-rated spa, and received invaluable training in reflexology, hot stone massage, deep tissue- and therapeutic massage.
- Implemented a new practice of sending personalized self-massage suggestions home with each client.
- Excelled in providing Pressure Point foot massages, which became frequently requested at the clinic.
- Took the initiative to improve the Spa’s online presence through targeted social media posts, resulting in a peak in business.
- Participated in a program where the spa provided massages for a local football team.
Massage therapist education
There are currently over 245 accredited massage therapy institutions in the United States, according to the American Massage Therapy Institution, and all you need is your High School diploma to be accepted to these.
As a result, many massage therapists will list a High School education and a Massage Therapy degree, without having obtained any other academic degree. This is something we also noticed in the dozens of resumes and massage therapy job posts we sampled.
Massage therapy school programs need to be accredited by the United States Department of Education, and these types of programs can go in this section, while individual courses should go in the ‘Course’ section.
There is no need to list your High School diploma if you have, for example, a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree. When hiring massage therapists, recruiters tend to pay attention mostly to massage related education.
If you have studied marketing or business, this also tends to be a plus, due to the importance of marketing yourself and your workplace when you are a massage therapist.
Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cardiff, United Kingdom
B.A. in Sport Conditioning, Rehabilitation and Massage, 2013 – 2017
National University of Health Sciences, Lombard, IL
Associate of Applied Science in Massage Therapy, 2011 – 2013
Wilson High School, Washington, D.C.
High School Diploma, 2008 – 2011
In our research, it became clear that not all massage therapists choose to include a course section, and it should be done only if you have taken additional massage courses that are relevant to your future job.
If your courses were included in a study program listed in the education section, there generally isn’t a point in listing these here, unless they are very specific for the position.
For example, if your study program included a course in Thai massage and if the work post mentions it – list it here to make sure it pops out.
- Deep Tissue Massage Certificate Course
- Massage Therapist Diploma Course
- Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage Certificate Course
- Thai Foot Reflexology Massage Certificate Course
Having a license is mandatory in most states, which is usually issued by the NCETMB (National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork), the MBLEx (the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination) or the individual state you are active in.
You may be required to have one of the above along with a specific state license, or only one, depending on your home state.
When you apply for a new job, most workplaces prefer that you already have an active (current) license, so make sure your licenses are up to date before you list it on your resume.
- Nevada State Licensed Massage Therapist (Current)
- NCETMB License
- MBLEx License
Complete massage therapist resume sample
When looking through job posts while researching for this article, we decided to pick one to demonstrate how to write a compelling massage therapist resume.
The below job post is real, and we have written a sample resume based on the requirements mentioned.
The University of California is looking for a massage therapist who is licensed to work in the state of California, and who has a CPR certificate issued by the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association.
They want someone with 2 years of professional experience, integrity and the ability to work as a team. Organizational skills are also essential.
Skilled massage therapist with 4+ years of experience working with various techniques such as neuromuscular therapy, tissue mobilization and deep tissue therapy. Certified in hydrotherapy and prenatal massage, and with a drive to continue improving lives.
Knowledgeable | 5+ years of experience | Dedicated | Friendly | American Red Cross CPR Certificate | CAMTC License | Therapeutic massage | Reflexology | Cranial Sacral Massage | Equipment handling | Therapy modification |
Marriott, Sonoma, CA
Massage Therapist, 2017 – 2020
Provided massage and other treatment options to hotel guests, and worked together with the other massage therapists to provide a comfortable and unforgettable spa experience.
- Implemented new hygiene and clean-up routines to accommodate clients with allergies, which received positive attention from the hotel management.
- Introduced Thai massage which increased client retention rate by 57%.
- Talked each client through the process and provided suggestions for home treatments between appointments.
- Was awarded for always being available for additional shifts and weekend work.
The Meritage Resort & Spa, Napa, CA
SPA Massage Therapist, 2013 – 2017
Responsible for scheduling appointments, keeping track of expenses, delegating the work tasks between the staff and providing high-quality massage therapy treatments to high-end clientele.
- Successfully marketed the hotel’s lotions, essential oils and body care product line.
- Restructured the spa budget to better make use of the hotel’s financial assets.
- Offered customized treatment plans based on age, pre-existing health conditions and client preferences.
- Participated in an initiative to promote preventive massage therapy, which brought in younger clients.
- California Massage Therapy Council Certificate (current)
- American Red Cross CPR Certificate
- Deep Tissue Massage Certificate
Arizona Western College, Yuma, AZ
Massage Therapy Mastery Program, 2015 – 2017
Arizona Western College, Yuma, AZ
Associate of Applied Science in Massage Therapy, 2013 – 2015
- Deep Tissue Massage Certificate Course
A massage therapist is thorough and knowledgeable, and while you may think your resume is just a piece of paper – it is actually quite the opposite. The hiring manager is likely to be looking at every section of your resume, so make sure that everything you put in there serves a purpose.
Working so closely with clients is a big responsibility, where actions will reflect directly on the company. As a result, you shouldn’t be surprised if future employers are picky, and it is essential to write a resume that stands out.
- Have your state specific certifications in order and list them both in the certification section and among your skills.
- If the job post requires knowledge of a specific massage technique, make sure to highlight these skills as much as possible.
- Soft skills a massage therapist needs are the ability to listen, communicate and take appropriate action. You can show off these skills on your resume by properly adapting it to the job post, showcasing your best attributes and demonstrating professionalism.
Tips from Experts
“Sell what they are buying. For example, don’t sell yourself from your previous experiences and jobs. Write your resume towards the position you are applying for – not your past job titles.” – Gloria Coppola, Owner of Massage Pro C.E.
“You should have good communication skills, the ability to read other people and be empathetic and able to listen to what they are telling you. There are many times when you don’t just become their massage therapist, but their therapist, with problems.” – Spencer Harwood, HM Massage
“You might have a vision of how this is going to go. You are going to go to school, get your license, get your own room, get your table, get your sheets, you already got your logo. You got this panned out, there are going to be people lined up outside your door to get a massage. …That is false. You need to make sure you understand marketing and sales.” – Patrick Cook, Life Touch Massage LLC
It can be hard to sell yourself in writing, but this is only because we are not used to it. When you work with massage therapy, you sell your services and your skills to your customers every day, and writing a massage therapist resume is not that different.
What are you good at, and what are your strengths? These are two fundamental parts of a massage therapist resume.
If you can find a way to highlight your experience and expertise, while also showing off your personality and your passion for the trade – you will be one big step closer to getting your dream massage therapist job.