MassageAccording to a recent nationwide consumer survey released by the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), approximately 47 million adult Americans received a massage within the past year. The latest figures show continued growth in the number of consumers receiving a massage--with two million more people having received a massage than a year ago.

The survey is released in conjunction with the AMTA's National Massage Therapy Awareness Week, Oct. 23-29. The week is dedicated to educating consumers on the benefits of massage therapy for overall health and wellness. This year's theme is "Massage: A Key to a Healthier You."

The survey also found that among those who received a massage for pain relief, the same percentage of respondents (28 percent) ranked massage therapy and medication as bringing the greatest relief from pain.

The survey also shows increases in the number of healthcare providers who promote the benefits of massage to their patients. Twenty-one percent of consumers surveyed said they had discussed massage therapy with their doctor or other healthcare provider, up from 14 percent in 2002.

"Along with massage therapy's continued popularity for relaxation and stress relief, this year's survey findings show higher numbers of consumers turning to massage therapy for pain relief than we've ever seen before," says Mary Beth Braun, president of AMTA.

Consumer confidence in massage therapy also is up sharply; with 73 percent stating they would recommend it to someone they know, compared to 65 percent a year ago.

The annual consumer survey was conducted by Opinion Research Corporation International Aug. 11-14, 2005, among a national probability sample of 1,014 adults (506 men and 508 women) aged 18 and older, living in private households in the continental United States. The survey has a confidence level of plus or minus three percent. This is the ninth annual massage therapy survey of American consumers commissioned by the AMTA.

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