States That Accept the MBLEx Exam
The MBLEx, or the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination, is currently accepted by 43 states, the District of Columbia, and a few U.S. territories as part of the process to establish whether or not an individual seeking to become a massage therapist is properly trained and qualified. Those who successfully pass this exam are eligible to become licensed massage therapists in any of these 44 states, given that they fulfill any other requirements set by each state.
As part of licensure requirements, the MBLEx is accepted in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, S. Virgin Islands, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
The MBLEx is administered by the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards (FSMTB), an organization that was formed to help standardize the process by which massage therapists could become licensed to practice throughout the United States.
Regulation of the Massage Therapy Industry
The massage therapy industry in regulated in the vast majority of states. Only Minnesota, Vermont, Kansas, and Wyoming do not have any for state regulations that govern massage therapy industry standards or licensure.
Students of massage therapy are advised to research the state in which they live or hope to practice in order to make sure that they fully understand and meet the requirements set by their state. Most states that regulate this industry require that students take the MBLEx in addition to having completed a certain number of training hours. The number of hours varies greatly by state, as Texas requires only 500 training hours while Nebraska requires 1000.
Additionally, states set their own standards regarding the process of renewing massage therapy licenses. In order to be eligible for renewal of their license, a massage therapist may be required to complete a certain number of continuing education requirements, which may be offered in-person or online. The period during which a massage therapy license remains valid also varies from state to state, as some therapists may be required to renew their licenses every year while others may be able to go two to three years between renewals.
Preparing for the MBLEx
Individuals who are considering becoming massage therapists will want to familiarize themselves with the content found on the MBLEx, as it is the most widely accepted licensing credential in the massage therapy industry. The exam is designed to test students' knowledge of massage therapy, as well as related concepts like anatomy and physiology, kinesiology, and the various laws and ethics that are pertinent to working in this industry.
While massage therapy education and training programs will provide the bulk of a student's preparation for this exam, students may also be interested in completing a test prep course designed specifically for the MBLEx. Study.com offers an MBLEx study guide, that includes a comprehensive overview of all the topics covered on the test as well as practice quizzes and study tools. Test-takers can also benefit from a full practice exam, with over 360 questions formatted similarly to those found on the exam.