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How To Be A Massage Therapist In Florida

Education Requirements For Licensed Massage Therapists

Massage Therapy Program – Florida Academy

Prospective Florida massage therapists may enroll in Board-approved educational programs or apprenticeship programs. There are separate requirements for each.

Educational Programs: Educational programs may be approved by the Florida Department of Education or by a comparable agency in another state. Approved programs include at least 500 hours of study .

The Florida Board has provided a list of Florida-approved programs, along with their examination pass rates .

Approved educational programs include the following curriculum:

  • Anatomy and physiology: 150 hours
  • Massage theory and history: 100 hours
  • Allied modalities: 76 hours
  • Florida laws and rules: 10 hours
  • Medical errors: 2 hours
  • HIV/ AIDS: 3 hours

The student is to complete no more than six hours of classroom study per day and no more than 30 per calendar week.

Apprenticeship Programs: A massage therapy apprentice must have a sponsor who has practiced for at least three years . The massage therapy establishment must meet requirements delineated in administrative code. It must have textbooks and teaching materials on the following subjects: anatomy, physiology, massage theory, massage-related laws and rules, and hydrotherapy.

Apprenticeships last 12 to 24 months and cover the following content:

  • Anatomy: 300 hours

Of the above requirements, the following must be completed within the first quarter:

  • Anatomy: 100 hours
  • Statutes and rules: 15 hours

Apprentices are subject to quarterly reports.

A Promising Job Outlook For Massage Therapists

As more people choose to live healthier lifestyles and prefer more holistic approaches to health care and pain management, the demand for licensed massage therapists grows. According to O*NET OnLine, the career outlook for massage therapists is much greater than average. In Florida, the need for massage therapists is projected to increase by 29 percent through 2024.

Florida Academy graduates can specialize in a particular type of massage therapy and work in a variety of settings, including:

  • Franchised clinics

How Much Will I Earn

The average annual wage of a massage therapist in Florida was $50,561 in 2021. This is on the lower side of state earnings, with the average national salary at $53,222. Massage therapists who work in Naples-Marco Island earn a similar salary, with the average for this city at $49,171 annually.

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Potential Careers For Massage Students

You can stay close to home or go abroad after obtaining an education in massage. Licensed professionals have the potential to become:

  • Massage therapists in spas
  • Massage therapists on cruise ships and yachts
  • Sports massage therapists
  • Wellness consultants
  • Spa managers or owners of your own practice

If youre someone who loves to help others achieve healing and general wellness, a future in massage therapy may be right for you.

Additional Requirements For Endorsement Applicants

Miami Beach, FL, Massage Therapists

Requirements for Endorsement Applicants

  • Hold an active license in another state with licensing requirements equivalent to or exceeding those required for a license in Florida. Staff will attempt to verify your license during application processing. Additional documentation may be requested if the equivalency of education or examination requirements cannot be determined.
  • Complete a ten-hour Florida Laws and Rules course with an approved CE provider.Approved courses and providers can be found by visiting

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How To Become A Massage Therapist

Entering the field generally requires massage therapist training and licensure/certification. These are the steps you can expect to take for how to be a massage therapist.6

  • Get educated. According to the BLS, education requirements will depend on the state or city you live in. Typically, youll need to complete at least 500 hours of study at a massage therapy school.7 To gain entrance into massage therapy school, the requirements are typically a high school diploma or equivalent. Youll typically learn massage therapy techniques, anatomy, kinesiology, pathology, physiology and ethics in a massage therapy program.
  • Obtain a license or certification. Check the massage therapist requirements for the state you want to work in to see if theres a license or certification required. Typically, youll need to get licensed because massage therapy is a regulated industry in most states. It directly impacts peoples health and well-being, so youll need to meet education, training and exam requirements before you can get licensed and start legally working as a massage therapist. The Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards offers the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination , which is commonly used for massage therapy licensure.8
  • Massage therapy is commonly regulated with licensing requirements in order to protect individuals and businesses. If you plan on being self-employed, youll still need to meet your state licensing requirements in order to provide massage legally.

    What Does A Massage Therapist Do

    Massage therapists use physical touch to manipulate muscles and soft tissues in a process called massage. People seek massage for a variety of reasons, including:

    • Relaxation and stress relief
    • Injury prevention
    • Improved circulation and overall health and well-being

    Massages can range anywhere from 10 minutes on a specific body part, to 2 hours or longer for an all-over body massage. When a massage therapist meets with a client, the therapist will typically conduct an intake session. The therapist will ask the client why theyre seeking a massage and identify any sore or tender areas they have and any injuries the therapist should be aware of.

    During the massage, the client may either be fully clothed or partially clothed, depending on preference. Some therapists will use tools like lotion, oil or hot stones during the massage.

    With the clients goals and physical condition in mind, the massage therapist will massage the body to improve relaxation and relieve and prevent long-term pain. Massage therapists typically use their hands, while some may also use body parts such as elbows and feet to deliver massage. Massage therapists communicate with clients during the massage to ensure the session is pain-free.

    After a massage session, the masseuse will provide the client with recommendations, which may include hydration, posture guidelines and stretching exercises. The therapist will also recommend an ongoing massage plan to help the client achieve their goals.

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    Why Become A Massage Therapist

    Massage therapists are in high demand these days.1

    The BLS attributes massage therapist job growth to a few factors. One is that more states are requiring licensing and other standards in order for massage therapists to practice. This adds to the legitimacy of massage therapist work, which makes people more likely to seek out massage for wellness.

    Another reason for the growth of massage therapy jobs is that physicians are increasingly recommending massages to their patients care plans. In some countries around the world, like in Australia, remedial massage is even covered by health insurance.2 As massages health care reputation increases, its also expected to be a more popular and more widely available form of treatment.

    Best States to Work as a Massage Therapist

    The following are the states with the highest employment levels for massage therapists as of May 2020, according to the BLS, along with employment data.4 These estimates do not include self-employed massage therapists, which the BLS reports make up the largest employment source for massage therapy, with 38% of massage therapists working as self-employed workers.5


    Calculating The Cost To Get A Florida Massage License

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    If you are considering getting a Florida massage license, you may wonder how much it potentially will to cost to obtain and renew a massage license. The truth is that cost will vary depending on your situation. You will incur different costs due to different fees charged by your state, school, and whether you plan to own a business or work as an employee in Florida. Below is a list of the fees you will or may incur so you can budget accordingly.

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    All Of The Steps Must Be Completed Before Or On The First Day Of Class

    In the event that a student does not have all required documentation the students enrollment may be moved to the next class or the students program kit will be held until all steps are completed an all required documentation is provided.


    Accepted students will be notified of acceptance and be provided with a class start date. Orientation during the first week of classes is mandatory and all students must attend.

    Check Your State Regulation Of Massage Therapy

    As you may know, massage therapy is regulated at the state level, but you have not asked why this is the case.

    In the United States, all health care fields, such as massage therapy have a defined scope of practice.

    Licensure exists as a legal regulatory process to ensure that medical practitioners stay within their scope of practice.

    This board also ensures that you are sufficiently qualified to practice treating the general public.

    As such, violating licensing and scope of practice laws may result in legal punishment.

    Who regulates licensure for massage therapy?

    Massage therapy licensure is handled at the state level, usually by a state board of massage therapy.

    For example, in Florida, the license to practice massage therapy is granted by the State of Florida Board of Massage Therapy.

    How does the state determine the scope of practice for massage therapy?

    While massage therapy practice is legally regulated by the state, massage therapy competency is determined by the Federation of State Massage Boards .

    The FSMB is the nationally-recognized professional organization that sets the educational and training standards for massage therapists.

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    Florida Massage Therapy Certification

    Massage therapists must be licensed in Florida. The Florida Board of Massage Therapy issues the licenses. You will need to apply for a license once you meet all of the requirements.

    Requirements for the massage therapist license in Florida are made clear on the Florida Board of Massage Therapy site. First, applicants should be at least 18 years old when they apply. Second, applicants will need to have a background check.

    For people who have never had a massage therapy license or who do not hold a license in another state, there are additional requirements. Applicants will have needed to complete a course of study in massage therapy at an approved school .

    Next, applicants will need to take and pass the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination . Bright Education Institute designed a curriculum that meets the Florida Board of Massage Therapys standards for training. The program also prepares students to take the MBLEx.

    What should you do next? The final requirement is to attend a 10-hour Florida Laws and Rules course. Then submit the licensing application and fee. Processing of the application typically takes 5 to 7 days.

    How To Become A Massage Therapist In Florida: License Requirements

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    To work as a massage therapist in Florida, there are several regulations you will need to follow so that you can qualify for a Florida massage license. Becoming a massage therapist takes a combination of practical and theoretical learning, as well as developing an understanding of the regulations that surround the profession. So, if you’re looking to find out how to become a massage therapist in Florida, this article should help you to navigate the process.

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    What To Look For In A Massage Therapy School

    Before you compare massage therapist programs, it helps to research licensure requirements for the state you want to practice in. That way, you can choose one of the massage therapy programs that meets the requirements and can help you get licensed to work.

    As you look at massage therapist classes, consider these factors.

    Also, make sure the school you attend teaches the kinds of massage youre interested in. Some schools teach a wide variety, so youre prepared to provide clients with their preferred massage method.

    Massage Therapy Vs Massage Establishment In Florida As Provided By Law

    At the state level, you can obtain a license for an individual working as a massage therapist or a company providing massage therapy for customers. The first type is a professional or occupational license, while the latter is a license applied to a companys place of business.

    Florida Statutes §480.033 define the term massage establishment as a site or premises, or portion thereof, wherein a massage therapist practices massage therapy. The owner of a massage establishment is not necessarily a therapist.

    Under Florida law, an establishment owner refers to the person who has ownership interest in a massage establishment, which includes:

    • An individual who holds a massage establishment office,
    • A general partner of a partnership,
    • An owner or officer of a corporation, and
    • A member of a limited liability company and its subsidiaries who holds a massage establishment license

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    Foundation Form And Function: Foundation Concepts Of Core Stability

    About the CourseAbout the CourseFlorida Massage: this course is approved as general hours. You will not receive hands-on credit for this course.Course Release Date: May 17th, 2022About the CourseAbout the CourseAbout the CourseFlorida Massage: this course is approved as general hours. You will not receive hands-on credit for this course.About the CourseFlorida Massage: this course is approved as general hours. You will not receive hands-on credit for this course.About the CourseFlorida Massage: this course is approved as general hours. You will not receive hands-on credit for this course.Course Release Date: May 20, 2022 About the CourseAbout the CourseAbout the CourseFlorida Massage: this course is approved as general hours. You will not receive hands-on credit for this course.Course Release Date: 5/27/2022 About the CourseAbout the CourseFlorida Massage: this course is approved as general hours. You will not receive hands-on credit for this course.About the CourseFlorida Massage: this course is approved as general hours. You will not receive hands-on credit for this course.

    Finish Any Additional Requirements

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    It is possible you will need to submit materials in addition to the ones listed above.

    I used to recommend people submit their school transcripts and exam scores in all cases. However, the Board office has updated their process, and sometimes they can make an application decision based on your state license verification.

    Unfortunately, a complete list of which state licenses need to submit additional information is not available, as license verification comes in many forms and states sometimes change what they provide with a verification.

    Once an application has been received, it will be reviewed by Board staff. Upon review, it may be necessary for Board staff to request the additional information below.

    School Transcript

    In some cases, the Board office can make the determination of completion of 500 hours without a transcript through the state verification. However, if this education equivalency cannot be determined, Board staff will request a change of application method and request documentation of education.

    Exam Scores

    As with school transcripts, if proof of exam cannot be determined through your license verification, the Board staff will request your licensing exam scores. If you took an exam to get your current license, or sometime after you got your license, you can most likely use those scores for your Florida license.

    64B7-25.004 Endorsements. says the following about those who have an active license and are applying by endorsement:

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    Laws And Statutes Governing Massage Establishments

    Massage Therapy is highly regulated in Florida. Numerous laws and statutes protect patients and clients. The two main areas of laws are:

    • The Florida Massage Practice Act: Chapter 480 of the Florida Statutes
    • Chapter 64B7 in the Florida Administration Code

    A brief summary is included however, an attorney can explain this exhaustive list of rules and regulations. The list of statutes includes qualifications for massage therapists. Age requirements, education, license application and renewal information, fees, and much more is thoroughly explained. Additionally, Massage Establishment regulations are explained in great detail. Of great importance to business owners is the Disciplinary Action section . This statute explains grounds for disciplinary action by the Massage Therapy Board. Basically, Section details what you are not supposed to do in your business.

    Requirements For All Applicants

    • Beat least 18 years of age or have received a high school diploma or high school equivalency diploma.
    • Determine the correct method of application:
    • If you do not hold an active massage therapist license in another state, or if you hold an active license which did not require you to graduate from a course of study of 500 or more clock hours, you will need to apply by examination.
    • If you do hold a massage therapist license in another state which required you to complete a course of study of 500 or more clock hours as a requirement of licensing, you will likely apply You will be required to pass an approved examination if the state you are endorsing from did not require you to take an examination for licensing.
    • Additional requirements for examination and endorsement methods can be found below.
  • Complete a background screening with an approved Livescan provider.Visit for additional information.
  • Submit your application and fee payment. To explore additional requirements, choose a method below:
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    Where Can I Study

    The Florida Board of Massage Therapy provides a list of approved schools where future LMTs can complete their 500 required hours.

    Since there are dozens of education options in Florida, it may be helpful for you to narrow down where in Florida you would like to study. Miami is a popular city to study massage, with two leading programs there: Florida College of Natural Health and Miami Dade College.

    • Florida College of Natural Health: Accredited by the ACCSC, students at this school can graduate in as little as six and a half months. This school has been serving Florida for more than 20 years, and many graduates work for the top massage and spa industry employers in the nation. Florida College of Natural Health also has locations in Orlando and Fort Lauderdale.
    • Miami Dade College: This massage therapy program is approved by the State of Florida Board of Massage Therapy, and will prepare students to apply for one of the National Certification Board of examinations. Students will earn hours in hydrotherapy, anatomy and physiology, allied modalities, and standards for massage therapy.

    Other education options outside of Miami include Central Florida School of Massage Therapy in Orlando and Alpha School of Massage in Jacksonville.

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