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Neuromuscular Therapy Training

Learn about Neuromuscular Therapy Training and Careers

man massaging and stretching womans calf musicle

A specialized form of manual therapy, neuromuscular therapy (NMT) integrates specific massage techniques, flexibility stretching and home care practices to eliminate the causes of neuromuscular pain.

NMT theory explains how injury, trauma and other factors can destabilize nerve transmission, making the body vulnerable to pain and dysfunction.

Through neuromuscular therapy training, students learn to manipulate muscles, tendons and connective tissue to restore balance to the central nervous system.

Career Overview

Neuromuscular therapy examines five elements that cause pain:

  • ischemia (lack of blood flow),
  • trigger points (learn about trigger point therapy),
  • nerve compression,
  • postural distortion,
  • and biomechanical (movement) dysfunction.

During an initial session, neuromuscular therapists interview patients about their health history, current physical condition, lifestyle, and stress levels and devise a treatment plan that addresses their pain syndromes.

Using fingers, knuckles or elbows, neuromuscular therapists apply concentrated pressure on areas of pain until they reach a trigger point, usually a spot that’s extra tender or numb. At this point, they’ll begin a stronger, more localized massage to relax the muscle. Relaxing muscles in this way releases lactic acid, increasing blood and oxygen flow, which, in turn, enhances the function of joints, muscles and movement.

Training and Education

What You’ll Study in Neuromuscular Therapy School

Classes in neuromuscular therapy training typically come in the form of continuing education or advanced training seminars available at massage and healing arts schools. You can expect neuromuscular training course work to cover the following:

  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Functions and dysfunctions of muscles and joints in the torso, cranium, upper extremities and lower extremities
  • Postural analysis
  • Massage and structural balancing
  • Neuromuscular treatment protocols

Average Length of Study

Depending on the program, neuromuscular training can take two to three days of seminar time. Some schools may offer different levels of neuromuscular therapy training that cover the causes and treatments for specific pain and emotional syndromes, such as scoliosis, carpal tunnel, migraines and even depression and guilt.

Average Tuition

Tuition for neuromuscular training ranges from $400 to $500 per seminar. Schools typically offer seminars through the course of the year and in different regions of the country to allow for greater scheduling flexibility for students.

Neuromuscular Therapy Certification

Certification in neuromuscular therapy is available through seminar programs. Typically, neuromuscular training counts toward continuing education credits for massage therapists and other natural healing professions that benefit from using integrative therapies like NMT in practice.

Career Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) current Occupational Outlook Handbook, employment of massage therapists will grow at a rate of 20% through 2031, which is much faster than average.

The public’s ongoing interest in using natural healing alternatives, particularly massage, to relieve pain, injuries and stress is just one of the many factors that will contribute to the growth in massage therapy jobs in the coming decade.

Neuromuscular Therapy Salary

According to the BLS, salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience and a variety of other factors.

In general, massage therapists who work in private practice can earn higher salaries than those who work for an employer. However, self-employed therapists do have to cover costs associated with running their own business. Find salaries for your state below.

Massage Therapists

National data

Median Salary: $46,910

Projected job growth: 20%

10th Percentile: $24,450

25th Percentile: $34,770

75th Percentile: $60,510

90th Percentile: $77,600

Projected job growth: 20%

State data

State Median Salary Bottom 10% Top 10%
Alaska $121,120 $30,330 $154,310
Alabama $28,810 $17,050 $48,730
Arkansas $37,970 $23,440 $60,400
Arizona $43,150 $29,160 $61,890
California $47,590 $29,270 $92,590
Colorado $47,900 $29,670 $62,600
Connecticut $53,060 $26,100 $113,830
District of Columbia $47,230 $31,340 $61,250
Delaware $43,600 $24,040 $78,690
Florida $38,600 $23,360 $73,190
Georgia $38,050 $18,050 $62,650
Hawaii $49,080 $23,260 $96,520
Iowa $46,440 $24,580 $60,490
Idaho $47,980 $24,470 $128,110
Illinois $49,130 $23,670 $79,010
Indiana $47,960 $22,680 $80,880
Kansas $39,370 $16,860 $66,060
Kentucky $48,700 $28,810 $78,560
Louisiana $29,550 $17,440 $78,990
Massachusetts $58,190 $37,070 $97,240
Maryland $46,940 $24,440 $122,960
Maine $39,200 $30,150 $77,450
Michigan $59,040 $26,040 $97,410
Minnesota $46,910 $29,130 $73,290
Missouri $36,610 $21,420 $60,450
Mississippi $43,460 $28,310 $51,520
Montana $59,380 $22,680 $82,970
North Carolina $47,120 $22,740 $68,920
North Dakota $60,550 $30,380 $87,620
Nebraska $46,640 $23,110 $79,010
New Hampshire $47,980 $23,250 $77,440
New Jersey $44,870 $29,110 $61,670
New Mexico $38,330 $28,190 $79,010
Nevada $30,700 $17,720 $59,380
New York $47,460 $31,930 $75,940
Ohio $46,490 $29,380 $76,190
Oklahoma $47,550 $26,160 $59,380
Oregon $70,300 $30,350 $94,020
Pennsylvania $46,410 $25,890 $71,500
Rhode Island $30,350 $24,540 $30,350
South Carolina $35,880 $17,440 $55,800
South Dakota $30,780 $23,340 $49,300
Tennessee $45,400 $18,850 $60,400
Texas $42,860 $22,330 $62,680
Utah $45,910 $18,020 $65,640
Virginia $46,460 $21,190 $76,250
Vermont $47,850 $29,650 $61,340
Washington $65,610 $31,150 $88,610
Wisconsin $39,300 $17,470 $61,450
West Virginia $46,640 $23,340 $75,450
Wyoming $47,820 $29,010 $61,690

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 2021 median salary; projected job growth through 2031. Actual salaries vary depending on location, level of education, years of experience, work environment, and other factors. Salaries may differ even more for those who are self-employed or work part time.

Is a Neuromuscular Therapy Career Right for You?

A career in neuromuscular therapy requires advanced training in muscular and skeletal systems, the nervous system, and neuromuscular massage techniques. Much like a career as a massage therapist, earning a living as a neuromuscular therapy specialist takes business savvy and marketing skills to build a client base.

If you are interested in a neuromuscular therapy career, take a closer look at neuromuscular training courses. Then choose the neuromuscular school that meets your personal and professional needs.

Learn how neuromuscular therapy is similar to myofascial release.

Sources: Buckland Massage & Neuromuscular Center, Cortiva Institute, NMT Center, St. John Neuromuscular Therapy Seminars