The fastest growing environment for this sector in the last decade is the spa industry. Spas in the United States employ more than two hundred fifty thousand people and china escort therapy is the most requested service.5 The spa industry is experiencing a high growth rate, an estimated 15-16 percent per year.6 Spas provide a distinct employment advantage for some massage therapists, especially those fresh out of school. A new therapist needs to gain confidence and experience by working on a large number of people. In addition, the economic pressures of setting up a private practice may be overwhelming when combined with remaining school expenses. We can expect steady growth in the spa sector for at least several more years.
One area where health and personal care styles of massage are beginning to converge is in medical spas. Medical spas offer similar services to traditional spas but also frequently employ licensed physicians or other healthcare providers. Treatments at medical spas often address not only wellness or beauty enhancement, but also various health problems as well. This innovative development could provide a greater degree of communication and participation between the healthcare and personal care sectors of massage. However, medical spas will need to employ practitioners with the skill base to adequately accomplish spas' advertised healthcare massage services.
Another trend likely to continue in the coming decades is the growth of massage girls franchise businesses. Advocates for these businesses claim to offer longer hours and charge less in an effort to make massage more accessible to a greater number of people. Some practitioners are uncomfortable with the franchise business model because they believe the lower cost may undercut services provided by private individuals or independent clinics. However, franchise businesses could serve an important niche in making massage more visible and accessible to those who might not ordinarily pursue it. On the other hand, there are concerns about how it will affect the overall perception of massage therapy by the general consumer.
It remains to be seen how or if franchise businesses--where treatments are designed to be similar and greater emphasis is placed on business success for the franchise owner--will change the nature of personal care massage china. In general, there are concerns about quality with the franchise setting. This issue is discussed below in education and training.