A State by State Massage Therapist Licensure Guide

Massage Therapy School in Indianapolis, IN

Who can benefit from massage therapy in Indianapolis? Just about anyone! The list includes people with serious illnesses or chronic pain, professional sports players, infants, even cats, dogs, and horses: Massage therapists here practice it all! Massage patients – the human ones -- sometimes manage to get the service covered by a third party payer; this depends in part on the condition massage is being used to treat. Many other people are believers – enough to pay a nice sum for an hour or two of therapy.

Popular Massage Therapy Schools in Indianapolis

Indiana Massage College allows a student to earn a diploma of sports and medical massage. Among the goals: to take a student beyond the spa in his or her work options. The school is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET).

The Indiana Therapeutic Massage School offers a 625-hour program. Here students are introduced to a wide variety of modalities. The school offers multiple scheduling options; scheduling becomes even more flexible after students have completed some introductory coursework.

Alexandra School of Scientific Therapeutics provides several program options. The comprehensive program here is indeed comprehensive -- it includes animal massage.

Balance Massage School, located 40 miles or so away in Columbus, has a 625-hour program. Among the community service students perform: nursing home arm massage.

Massage Therapy and the Healthcare Establishment

There is a push in Indiana to make it easier for patients to try non-narcotic pain remedies first and to reserve narcotics for those cases where less risky treatments fail. Some good news heralds from this part of the country: A health sciences assistant professor at Indiana University/ Purdue University has found evidence that massage is indeed effective for lower back pain (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/04/170403123315.htm).

Carmel-based American Specialty Health, a company that provides wellness programs through company plans and insurers, is working toward increased coverage for therapeutic massage and other integrative treatments. Anthem, which provides coverage for a large part of the population of Indianapolis, states massage may be covered for some conditions.

The city’s health systems vary in the extent to which they have integrated massage as a treatment for chronic pain and other health conditions. Franciscan Health Wellness Suite has nine massage therapists (https://www.franciscanhealth.org/healthcare-facilities/franciscan-health-massage-therapy-indianapolis-1948). The LMTs have training in a wide variety of modalities, from the expected deep tissue and trigger point therapies to cupping and even vibrational sound massage.

Multiple healthcare organizations in the Indianapolis area are using massage as an adjunct therapy for those in treatment for cancer. The IU Health Simon Cancer offers cancer patients massage therapy at no additional charge as part of its CompleteLife Program (https://iuhealth.org/find-locations/iu-health-simon-cancer-center). Oasis at Franciscan Health Care offers massage among multiple services that help cancer patients feel better and look more like themselves (https://www.franciscanhealth.org/healthcare-facilities/franciscan-health-cancer-center-indianapolis-2053).

The Indianapolis area also boasts multiple practitioners who practice infant massage. Parents and caretakers may turn to the services of a professional massage therapist when a baby is difficult to calm, has trouble with issues like feeding, or just needs a little help with that first life transition. Infant massage is in the public consciousness here. Some healthcare organizations offer brief classes for moms and dads who want to add a little massage to their baby care routines.

Massage Therapist Work Settings

There are a wide range of practice options: massage studios, spas, chiropractic offices, massage schools. Massage schools are not just places to study; they are also places people come for massage! The public often has the opportunity to schedule with professional massage therapists if they want expertise beyond what a student can provide (and if they are willing to pay the higher rate).

Athletes subject their bodies to grueling demands have the dual need of taking care of themselves and getting back to the arena or playing field quickly. The Indiana Pacers are looked after by a team that includes a massage therapist as well as physical therapists and athletic trainers.

Franchises can be a good place to begin one’s career. Massage Heights has been setting up shop in the greater Indianapolis area for a while now (https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/massage-heights-to-open-second-location-in-indianapolis-area-on-dec-21-300573496.html). Individuals who have the resources and the entrepreneurial spirit sometimes opt for their own franchise. Patch reported on a Carmel massage therapist who opened his own Hand and Stone franchise; he described what drew him to this particular model (https://patch.com/indiana/carmel/carmel-man-opens-local-hand-stone-massage-facial-spa). Of course there are other self-employment options – one can open a practice that reflects his or her own unique vision.

Some Indianapolis massage therapists work for Soothe: They provide massage on demand, arriving with massage table in hand (or so to speak). It’s a nice option when one has a busy schedule and little aches and pains creep up that (almost) impact their ability to get things done. As for the therapists who provide the service, it’s reported to be a well-paying gig.

For something even further outside mainstream, there’s massage of cats, dogs, and horses.

Indiana Massage Therapist Salaries

Salary information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is, as of early 2019, based on 2017 data. The massage therapist average hourly pay is especially in the Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson metropolitan area: $28.88. This high average is not a reflection of what the average massage therapist in this area brings in but what many do. The median is just $19.76, very close to the national median, but the figure jumps to $51.61 at the 75th percentile – far above what one sees nationally. At the 10th percentile, the figure is $12.97 – also above the national 10th percentile wage.

The Indianapolis area is more nearly average with regard to job concentration, again according to 2017 BLS data.

Additional Resources

Indiana Massage License Requirements

Massage Schools in Indiana