Interesting facts


  1. Touch is the first sense to develop in humans, and may be the last to fade.
  2. There are approximately 5 million touch receptors in our skin– 3000 in a finger tip.
  3. A touch of any kind can reduce the heart rate and lower blood pressure.
  4. Touch stimulates the release of endorphins (the body’s natural pain killers) which is why a mother’s hug for a child’s skinned knee can literally make it better.
  5. People with eating disorders who receive massage three time a day for ten day’s, gain weight faster and get out of the hospital six days sooner than those who don’t.
  6. Elderly people who massage surrogate grandchildren report higher-esteem and better moods.
  7. Massage before an athletic event, makes the athlete more flexible, enhanced speed and power, and less prone to injury .
  8. Today, there are more than 90,000 Nationally Certified practitioners that serve millions of consumers.
  9. Nationally Certified practitioners provide expertise in various areas of therapeutic massage and body work; including Swedish massage, shiatsu, polarity therapy, Rolfing®, Trager® techniques, reflexology, neuromuscular therapy and many more.
  10. The three most often cited reasons for getting a therapeutic massage are relaxation (27percent), relief of muscle soreness, stiffness or spasm (13percent), and stress reduction (10percent).
  11. Health insurers are increasingly expanding coverage to include alternative medicines. In addition, several healthcare network providers use National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB)  to check the National Certification status of the practitioner.
  12. In 1999, 52 percent of American adults thought of massage as “therapeutic,” which is up 47percent from 1997.
  13. In November 2005, 28 percent of American adults ranked medication and massage as the form of treatment that brought them the greatest relief from pain.
  14. In the same survey, 73 percent of those polled would recommend massage therapy to someone they know. This represents an 8-point increase over a year ago, demonstrating consumer confidence in massage as a part of a healthy lifestyle.
  15. Fifty-four percent of primary care physicians and family practitioners say they would encourage their patients to pursue massage therapy as a complement to medical treatment.
  16. An estimated 20 million Americans receive massage therapy and bodywork each year, according to the National Institute of Health (NIH).
  17. Massage therapy is the third most commonly used form of alternative medicine in the U.S., having been tried by 35 percent of Americans.
  18. Women are more likely than men to have tried alternative treatment.
  19. Americans make more visits to see alternative therapists than to see primary-care physicians, spending $21.2 billion.
  20. Massage and bodywork therapy is sought out by a large number of people in age brackets: 18-24 (22%); 25-34 (31%); 35-44 (25%); 45-54 (22%); 55-64 (19%); and over 65 (9%).
  21. The most important driver to try an alternative treatment is a recommendation from a friend or family member, which leads 62 percent of their patients to these providers.
  22. In 1996, massage therapy and bodywork was officially offered for the first time as a core medical service in the Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta. At the Games, Nationally Certified practitioners were providing key medical services.

Following are findings of a telephone survey conducted by Opinion Research Corporation International, Princeton, NJ, and commissioned by the American Massage Therapy Association® (AMTA®). The survey was conducted August 11-14, 2005 among a national probability sample of 1,014 adults (506 men and 508 women) ages 18 and older, living in private households in the continental United States. The survey has a confidence level of plus or minus 3 percent.

(This is the ninth annual survey of American consumers commissioned by AMTA)

  • Two million more people received a massage this year than last year. Confidence in massage therapy is also high, as nearly three quarters of those surveyed indicate they would recommend massage to someone they know.
  • Approximately 47 million Americans – more than one in five adults surveyed (22 percent) – received a massage within the past 12 months, representing an increase of 2 million people from last year.
  • 34 percent of respondents received a massage within the past five years – an increase of 4 million people from 2003.
  • 90 percent of those polled believe massage can be beneficial to your health. 94 percent of 18-24 year olds believe that statement.
  • Use of massage among those 65 and older has tripled since 1997 (15 percent in 2005 versus 4 percent in 1997.)
  • 73 percent of those polled would recommend massage therapy to someone they know. This represents an 8-point increase over a year ago, demonstrating consumer confidence in massage as a part of a healthy lifestyle.
  • 84 percent of African-Americans (9 points over last year) and 84 percent of Hispanics (6 points over last year) would recommend massage therapy.