Massage Therapy School in Buffalo, NY

Buffalo, New York was selected by SpareFoot as the #1 city to start a massage business; this was based primarily on economic factors like studio rental costs, housing costs and price per session. Although the write-up was in 2016 (, it appears some conditions remain very favorable – this is a place where homes go cheap!

Although the ‘top spot’ selection was for setting up one’s own practice, there are bright spots for other massage therapists, despite the city being a bit chilly. The cost of living is relatively low, massage has a healthcare presence, and there are some innovative wellness centers and some very restive parks and gardens. (As for the chill, Sparefoot noted to ‘pack one’s hot oil’.)

Popular Massage Schools in Buffalo, NY

The New York Institute of Massage is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. The program is 1,124 hours and can be pursued on a full- or part-time basis; the full-time option takes just a year. Medical massage and Oriental massage are among the styles covered. Students carry out 80 massage sessions in the student clinic. They receive some academic credits which they can transfer into an associate program if they choose.

Trocaire College offers a three semester massage therapy program that students can complete in less than a year. The third semester includes a neurology course and an elective. Trocaire College massage therapy students complete a Mercy Action Project prior to graduation.

Niagara Community College offers an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) program. It covers a variety of bodywork modalities, including Swedish, prenatal, and Shiatsu/ Eastern modalities.

Buffalo Massage Practices to Explore Employment With

In this part of New York, one finds a number of well-rated massage studios and wellness centers; the latter include professionals from multiple CAM disciplines. Some practices are spas; these typically include skin care services and may offer a variety of relaxation packages. The following are among the popular massage practices in the Buffalo area:

Massage Therapeutic Arts, a self-proclaimed sanctuary, has many very positive client ratings. The facility offers clients a number of choices of modality, some relatively uncommon. There’s Ashiatsu bar therapy, table Thai, myofascial release, and bamboo, among others. Their take on the combined hot/ cold stone massage is Jade Stone Massage. Spa treatments may combine massage and other goodies. Expo ranked this as the #5 spa in all of Upstate New York (

Spa Alexis at the Hyatt Regency meanwhile was ranked #3; this spa provides customized massages with add-ons such as hot stone, bamboo, and hot oil. Clients pay more than the average here for massage services.

Phoenix Rising is primarily massage, but there’s also a chiropractor onboard. The practice boasts five LMTs. The massage therapists here are independent contractors. Their bios describe their areas of expertise and style of massage; one describes how her experience as a patient brought her to massage. Clients may select their preferred provider – a not uncommon practice. The team also includes a dog who acts as professional greeter.

Purely Connected Massage Therapy and Wellness has five massage therapists onboard. Clients can receive a variety of therapies; the integrative massage blends modalities to meet client needs.

Buffalo Holistic Center is LMT-owned. The team includes nine additional massage therapists as well as a small number of professionals who practice other disciplines. The facility has an infrared sauna and is able to offer two types of light therapy.

Buffalo Alternative Therapies is an acupuncturist-massage therapist team that offers services on a sliding scale.

Rejuvinex also offers a number of modalities, including both traditional prenatal massage and Thai prenatal massage.

Chair Massage Pit Stop is a local chair massage company. Corporate massage, the business informs the public, can increase productivity. Among the Pit Stop programs is Pit Stop for Pups, a workplace wellness program which raises money for Friends of the City of Buffalo Animal Shelter.

Many LMTs operate their own small practices, often in their own names.

Massage in the Buffalo Healthcare Field

Massage therapists who provide medical or clinical services can be stationed many places, from very small offices to major hospitals. Some massage therapy is covered by insurance. Even at small practices, massage therapists may be credentialed by insurers. Natural Pain Management and Wellness, for example, advises potential clients that their massages may be covered when prescribed by healthcare professionals such as physical therapists ( Multiple insurance providers are listed on the website. There are currently three LMTs onboard. Natural Pain Management and Wellness was among those hiring in 2019; the hire was sought for “medical massage only”.

Some massage therapists even find their way to healthcare systems like Catholic Health. Massage Magazine stated that inpatients at Sisters of Charity Hospital in Buffalo sometimes receive massage by doctor prescription ( Outpatients often use Catholic Health massage services for rehabilitation, which may be covered by their worker’s compensation or no-fault auto insurance.

Massage Therapist Pay in Buffalo

The median hourly wage for a massage therapist in the Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls area was $27.19 in 2018 — well above the national median. The mid-range was $20.65 to $29.91.

Volunteer Opportunities

Massage therapists may volunteer for multiple reasons: to help others and to leverage their own careers. Some are making lives better for those in crisis. Grace House is a case in point. It is a guest house for families who have a loved one at the hospital; an LMT volunteers hours there.

The New York Chapter of the American Massage Association has both a community service massage team and a sports massage team.

Additional Resources

New York Massage License Requirements

Massage Schools in New York State