South Carolina Massage Therapy Schools & Licensing

South Carolina has one of the lowest requirements for number of hours to acquire your massage therapy license; however, their application fee is high compared to some other states.

Continuing education requirements and renewal fees in South Carolina are among the lowest in the US.  In this article, we will be discussing the main highlights as they apply to massage therapy within the state of South Carolina.

If you would like to find out more information about the rules and regulations here, you may email the South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy at

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

Brief Summary of The Main Highlights

In the state of South Carolina, you must be at least 18 years of age to obtain a massage therapy license and to work freely here.

Additionally, the South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy requires that you attend an approved school of massage and pass a qualifying exam.

After these requirements have been met, you must then submit your application for licensure along with the associated fee for approval by the board.

Schooling Details and Requirements (Credit Hours)

As for the schooling details and requirements towards credited massage therapy hours, you must complete 500 hours worth of massage therapy school.  The South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy must approve the school that you wish to attend.

Additionally, you must pass the National Certification Examination or the Federation of States Examination for Massage Therapy.  Any examination other than the National Certification Examination or the Federation of States Examination must have prior board approval.

Once you have completed the proper schooling and examinations, you must submit your application with the requested information and fee.

Licensure Qualifying Programs

The South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy must approve the school to which you hope to attend.   Below is a partial list of approved schools in the state of South Carolina:

Licensing/Certification Requirements

The South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy requires that after you have completed the necessary schooling and examinations, that you then submit a completed application for approval.

You can access all of the online application forms by clicking here.  The cost to submit your application is $150 and there are specific documents that must be included.  Be sure to follow all directions carefully, so as not to omit any important information or documents.

Key Agencies/Boards involved and their contact information

The South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy is the most important massage therapy governing organization in the state of South Carolina.  The following is the information that you may need to contact the board:

South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy

Kingstree Building, 110 Center View, Columbia SC 29210

P.O. Box 11329, Columbia, SC 29210-1329, Phone: (803) 896-4490 and Fax: (803) 896-4484.  EMAIL:  South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy


SC Dept. of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, Office of Board Services Massage/Bodywork Therapy

110 Centerview Drive, P.O. Box 11329, Columbia, South Carolina 29211-1329, Phone: (803) 896-4588, Email:

Requirements to Start a Massage Business in South Carolina (Massage Establishment License)

Only those who hold a massage therapy license in the state of South Carolina can practice massage.  With that said, you must obtain your license and be properly certified in order to open a massage business in South Carolina.

As you pursue your massage business in South Carolina, be sure that you understand some of the very important rules and guidelines associated with the industry.  For example, massage therapists may not diagnose or treat disease and may not practice spinal or joint manipulation or prescribe medications.

Additionally, the state of South Carolina requires that you include table coverings during massage therapy sessions or services and these must be changed after each person.  Lastly, your massage business must provide clean drapes for each patient for proper coverage and cleanliness.

Massage License Renewal Process

Your massage therapy license must be renewed the following renewal cycle.  Licenses, in the state of South Carolina, are renewed every two years at which time 12 hours of continuing education must be completed.  However, these continuing education hours are waived for you during the first renewal period.

Massage License Reciprocity

If you hold a massage therapy license in another state, you can easily become licensed in South Carolina.  However, the requirements for licensure in that state must be at least equal or greater than South Carolina requirements.

In this, reciprocity could be granted to you.  But if you were to take a state exam instead of the National Certification Exam or the Federation of State Exam, then the South Carolina Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy panel would need to review your exam and ensure that your education meets the requirements that are set for the state of South Carolina.

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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Start your career with training from Schools of Medical Massage. Our massage therapy programs include courses in anatomy, ethics, and business, so our students are fully equipped to succeed in their career.


  • Massage Therapy
Locations:  Lima
Branford Hall Career Institute offers career-focused education that gives you the job skills you need to make the leap into some of today's hottest careers.


  • Massage Therapy
Locations:  Parsippany

Blue Cliff College was founded in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1987 with the goal of becoming one of the most respected Massage Therapy training centers in the nation. In June of 1989, the College in Louisiana received its Proprietary School License from the state. In 1998, the Continuing Education College was proud to receive accreditation from the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC). The Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) is a recognized accrediting agency by the US Department of Education.


  • Massage Therapy - Diploma
Locations:  Fayetteville
Successful careers begin at the Milan Institute. We offer quality hands-on training, experienced faculty and a staff committed to helping you realize your goals.


  • Massage Therapy
Locations:  Bakersfield

At American Institute, we believe you can become whatever you want to be, and we’re ready to help you get there. We pride ourselves on working hard to deliver quality, innovative education to our students that gives them the skills to begin or enhance their careers. We try to help our students meet their goals of changing or enhancing their careers, and also help prospective employers of our graduates in meeting the workforce needs of the 21st century while actively participating in the communities we operate within.


  • Massage Therapy
Locations:  West Hartford

Dorsey has been a trusted career training school in Michigan for over 80 years!

We offer training programs designed to prepare our students for careers in fields such as healthcare, beauty, culinary, and skilled trades




  • Massage Therapy
Locations:  Madison Heights

Cortiva Institute School of Massage Therapy's innovative program will help you learn the art of massage therapy and introduce you to a range of career opportunities. Through a holistic approach to education, you'll be well-trained to work in clinics, hospitals, health clubs, spas, with sport teams, or to start a private practice.


Classes start November 13!


  • Professional Massage Therapy
Locations:  Las Vegas

Pursue your education with Platt College (Oklahoma). We offer hands-on training programs in the culinary arts, allied health, and nursing fields.

*Programs vary by location.

*High school diploma or GED required.

*Licensed by OBPVS.


  • Massage Therapy
Locations:  Lawton

Get a hands-on education at Lincoln Tech. Designed for today’s tough job market, our in-depth programs cover many fields including: Health Sciences, Business and Information Technology, Hospitality, Automotive Technology, HVAC Technology and Electrical Systems Technology. Financial Aid is available for those who qualify. Programs vary by campus.


  • Massage Therapy
Locations:  Lincoln

The Center For Natural Wellness School of Massage Therapy Offers:

  • Full-time and Part-time Classes
  • Hands-On Training in multiple modalities of bodywork
  • Experienced and Dedicated Faculty
  • Innovative and Cutting-edge Curriculum
  • Financial Aid for those who qualify
  • Scholarship and Grant Opportunities
  • LIFETIME Career Placement Services

The Center for Natural Wellness School of Massage Therapy is the perfect place to start training for your massage therapy career.


  • Diploma in Massage Therapy
Locations:  Albany

Find out how to instruct massage in South Carolina 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+

2 comments on “South Carolina Massage Therapy Schools & Licensing
  1. Melissa says:

    Great blog on licensure for massage therapists in South Carolina. Its the almost the same requirements here as Tennessee. The only difference is we need 25 ceus every 2 years where you need only 12 ceus there. Thankyou for sharing! 🙂

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