Massachusetts Massage Therapy Schools Requirements

As one of the most northern states in the United States, Massachusetts is a small state with much to offer you as an aspiring massage therapist.  Here, American history is rich, being the home of Plymouth Rock and Harvard University.  Many people visit Massachusetts for the weather, historical aspects and to just “get away”.  Here you can make a substantial living as a massage therapist.  The incomes are great and the opportunities are abounding.

Scroll straight to the bottom to see a list of the top massage therapy schools in Massachusetts.

Brief Summary of the Main Highlights

Massachusetts has set forth extensive schooling, licensing, renewal and reciprocity guidelines for you as an aspiring massage therapist to abide by.  It is very important for you to follow all of these requirements as they are.  Continue reading to find out more about the information you will need as either a new or seasoned massage therapist here in Massachusetts.

Schooling Details and Requirements (Credit Hours)

The state of Massachusetts requires that you obtain at least 650 hours of in class supervised classroom credits from an approved massage therapy school or program.  The breakdown of the total 650 hours is as follows:

  • 550 of these hours should be of academic courses including:
    • 100 hours of Anatomy and Physiology
    • 45 hours of Pathology
    • 45 hours of Kinesiology
    • 300 hours in supervised classroom Massage Theory and Techniques
    • 60 hours in Business Ethics, Professionalism and Practice
    • The remaining 100 hours must be from an unpaid, supervised clinical or internship.

In addition to the educational requirements, it is recommended that you take one of the following licensing exams although it is not required in the state of Massachusetts.

Licensure Qualifying Programs

There are several approved massage therapy schools that provide the required curriculum for your massage therapy license.  The following is a list of these schools and programs along with their contact information.

MassBay Community College
250 Eliot Street
Ashland, MA 01721
Phone: 508-881-9393

Bristol Community College
11 Field Road
Attleboro, MA 02703
Phone: 888-710-8999

Lincoln Tech
365 Westgate Drive
Brockton, MA 02301
Phone: 508-941-0730

Everest Institute
70 Everett Avenue
Chelsea, MA 02150
Phone: 617-889-5999

The Massage School
1 Northampton Street
Easthampton, MA 01027
Phone: 413-529-2900

New England Institute of Reflexology
P.O. Box 537
East Wareham, MA 02538
Phone: 508-317-3044

Bristol Community College
777 Elsbree Street
Fall River, MA 02720
Phone: 508-678-2811

Salter School
82 Hartwell Street
Fall River, MA 02720
Phone: 508-730-2740

MassBay Community College
19 Flagg Drive
Framingham, MA 01702
Phone: 508-270-4000

Mt. Wachusett Community College
444 Green Street
Gardner, MA 01440
Phone: 978-632-6600

Berkshire Community College
343 Main Street
Great Barrington, MA 01230
Phone: 800-816-1233

Greenfield Community College
1 College Drive
Greenfield, MA 01301
Phone: 413-775-1000

Massage Institute of Cape Cod
64 Enterprise Road
Hyannis, MA 02601
Phone: 508-771-5354

Spa Tech Institute
126 High Street
Ipswich, MA 01938
Phone: 978-356-0414

Kripalu School of Massage & Bodywork
West Street at Richmond Mountain Road
Lenox, MA 01240
Phone: 866-200-5203

Lincoln Tech
211 Plain Street
Lowell, MA 01240
Phone: 978-458-4800

Salter School
2 Florence Street
Malden, MA 02148
Phone: 781-324-5454

Elizabeth Grady
222 Boston Avenue
Medford, MA 02155
Phone: 781-960-0111

Bristol Community College
188 Union Street
New Bedford, MA 02740
Phone: 508-678-2811 ext. 4000

Acusage Academy
250 Main Street
Oxford, MA 01540
Phone: 508-987-0178

Berkshire Community College
1350 West Street
Pittsfield, MA 01201
Phone: 800-816-1233

Mildred Elley
505 East Street
Pittsfield, MA 01201
Phone: 413-442-0333

Spa Tech Institute
59 Industrial Park Road
Plymouth, MA 02360
Phone: 508-747-3130

Acupressure Therapy Institute
One Billings Road
Quincy, MA 02171
Phone: 617-697-1477

Lincoln Tech
5 Middlesex Avenue
Somerville, MA 02145
Phone: 617-776-3500

Wellness Resource Center School of Massage
250 Foundry Street Rt. #106
South Easton, MA
Phone: 508-996-6054

Central Mass School of Massage Therapy
200 Main Street
Spencer, MA 01562
Phone: 508-885-0306

Springfield Technical Community College
Armory Square #1
Springfield, MA 01102
Phone: 413-781-7822

Salter School
515 Woburn Street
Tewksbury, MA 01876
Phone: 978-934-9300

Cortiva Institute
103 Morse Street
Watertown, MA 02472
Phone: 617-688-1000

MassBay Community College
50 Oakland Street
Wellesley Hills, MA 02481
Phone: 781-239-3000

Bancroft School of Massage Therapy
333 Shrewbury Street
Worcester, MA 01604
Phone: 866-352-9409

Licensing/Certification Requirements

To obtain a massage license in the state of Massachusetts you must complete and submit the following documents. Once you have met and submitted these documents, you will be typically granted licensure within 4-8 weeks.

  • A completed application for licensure.
  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Have completed a high school education; possess a high school diploma or an equivalent GED.
  • You must provide the Board with two letters of reference.  One letter should be from a previous employer in the massage industry or medical field, a massage therapy professor or an actual therapist in which you had contact.  The other letter should be from any unrelated person who can attest to your personal and professional integrity.
  • Be in good standing.
  • Successfully take and complete a massage therapy education as outlined above in the schooling requirements section.
  • You should not have been convicted of any crimes.  A criminal background will be required before you will be able to possess a massage therapy license.
  • You must provide proof of liability insurance coverage of at least $1,000,000 per occurrence.
  • Pay a non-refundable fee of $225.

Key Agencies/Boards involved and their contact information

The Board of Registration of Massage Therapy for Massachusetts is the primary organization that has been created to oversee and regulate the massage industry for the state of Massachusetts, including licensure procedures.  If you would like to speak with a representative about your massage license, please feel free to contact the Board at the following address or number:

Division of Professional Licensure
239 Causeway Street
Boston, MA 02114
Phone: 617-727-1747
Fax: 617-727-0139

Requirements to Start A Massage Business in Massachusetts (Massage Establishment License)

Before the Board will issue an establishment license, you must make sure that your building and establishment is inspected first.  Once your establishment has been inspected you will need to submit an application for a massage establishment.

You can find this application by following the link provided here.  Depending upon what type of establishment you are applying for, the application will vary.  If you are going to work as a single therapist, please use and refer to the application linked here; however, if you plan to have multiple therapists within one establishment, please use the application provided here.  An application must be submitted for each physical location you plan to open.

With your application you will need to submit the following documentation:

  • A copy of the floor plan you will be using,
  • Copies of all local permits you have obtained,
  • A Statement by Compliance Officer,
  • A compliance plan,
  • A copy of the worker’s compensation insurance policy you have purchased, including the coverage dates,
  • A check or money order for $150 made payable to the “Commonwealth of Massachusetts”.
  • Mail your application and supporting documents and fee to the following address:

Board of Massage Therapy
1000 Washington Street, Suite 710: Establishment Licensure
Boston, MA 02118-6100

Massage License Renewal Process

There are several avenues that can be taken for renewal of a massage therapy license or a lapsed/expired license.  To simply renew your massage license, make sure that you meet the following requirements:

  • Every year, your massage license will be due for renewal.  In the state of Massachusetts, your license will expire on the 28th day of your birth month.
  • You must submit a completed written or electronic renewal application and the required $150 renewal fee before the expiration date.
  • You must provide proof that you have not been convicted of crime during the previous year of licensure.
  • You must provide proof of professional liability insurance of at least $1,000,000.
  • You must meet or exceed the required continuing education hours – however, this is under development at the time.  Be sure to check the Board’s website for any updates on continuing education credits.

To renew a lapsed or expired license:

  • If you fail to meet the requirements for renewal, then your massage license will be marked as “expired” and “not in good standing”.  If your license happens to fall into this category, you should not practice massage therapy until you are able to renew your license.
  • To reinstate your massage license within five years from the date of expiration, you must pay the $150 renewal fee, the fee for the current licensure period and a late fee.
  • You must also meet all continuing education hours that are required by the Board.  As of right now, the continuing education criteria are under review.  Be sure to check with the Board periodically to make sure you do not miss out on the continuing education information after it is created and developed.

Massage License Reciprocity

The Board can and will accept applications for reciprocity only after the non-refundable $225 application fee and application have been received.  The following requirements must be met as well:

  • Submit an application for endorsement.
  • Meet similar or exact requirements and standards set for massage licensing in the state of Massachusetts,
  • Be of good moral standing
  • The Board will not allow you to obtain your massage therapy license if your previous license has been revoked or suspended by a different state or jurisdiction.

Note: Specific personnel information, office addresses, fees, payments etc. may change over time. Although we do our best to keep this site up to date, please ensure you contact the state board to obtain the most recent information at the time of your application. 

Here is a list of the top massage therapy schools near you. We have an arrangement with all of them that allow you to request information for FREE. Please do so and take that first step toward a better future.

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Link to video lesson.

Learn how to become a massage school instructor in Massachusetts here.

Neal Lyons is a founding member and volunteer contributor at the MTSI Institute, an information based portal dedicated to guiding and assisting aspiring massage therapists establish a successful career in massage. Neal is a published author and has collaborated on several mobile applications that serve the massage profession. You can view his published work on Amazon, iTunes, Barnes & Noble, Sony and Kobo. You can connect with him on Facebook, Twitter and on Google+

Posted in Certification, Massage Therapy Schools, State by State Requirements

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